The Jester’s Privilege ~ Catherine Cohen: The Twist?… She’s Gorgeous

Source: NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Another twist? She’s much more! She’s funny, she’s epochal, she’s talented, and most importantly, she’s going to tell you all about it. Many times.

Going into this special, there wasn’t much to expect, since Catherine Cohen doesn’t have a lot of public work to go off of, other than a few acting roles here and there. However, this show, labeled as “comedy cabaret,” has been her thing since 2018, and if nothing else, this fact was what was most evident. You may never have heard of her, but she owns that motherfucking space. Joe’s Pub is her stage, Henry Koperski is her accompanist, and The Twist…? She’s Gorgeous is her show.

I mean, performing comedy itself takes a lot of ego and perhaps equal parts shame. Performing musical comedy? Arguably even more so. Performing jazzy piano tunes about event invites and women’s clothing while tottering around onstage in white boots and a pink, sequined romper? That’s a level of ego comparable to Kanye West, and a level of shame equal to Kanye’s PR team. And you know what? She not only pulls it off, but she kills it.

Her self-aware, yet self-important persona is curated so masterfully, it’s damn near impossible to listen to her “humble brag” about her life without cracking a smile. And by humble brag, I mean oversharing about going to a therapist twice a week and having a dating life on par with Britney Spears. Her arrogance is clearly a character for the stage, but it’s not often you see someone use it as a vehicle to let one’s true personality shine through and talk about things that matter to them.

Just because there’s a lot to praise, however, doesn’t mean there’s a lot to be desired as well. There were jokes that followed the same structure as the hour went on, so there were sections that felt a bit stale. That being said, the best part is that for all of its downsides, the format of the show is so fresh, I never felt robbed of entertainment or a good time, but rather I realized what high of a ceiling this type of show could have.

An icon in her own right, Cohen feeds the audience with anything and everything you’d want from a musical comic. For all of the repetitiveness and trudge at times, she easily makes up for it in panache and a well-cultivated show. I believe Cohen has the makings of a true superstar, and The Twist…? She’s Gorgeous is a small example of her total potential. But it’s, like, no big deal, you know?

7.5/10

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Nick McGlynn

Nick McGlynn

He/Him. Approaching the “trying something” era of my life. Twitter/Instagram: nickwritesjokes