Amazon Prime announces first stand-up special: Jim Gaffigan


Amazon Prime is getting into stand-up comedy. They’ve announced that comedian Jim Gaffigan’s Quality Time will be their first original stand-up special. It will be released later this year.

Netflix is winning the streaming wars when it comes to stand-up comedy. They’ve been steadily releasing specials for years. Comedians ranging from Anjelah Johnson, Hanna Gadsby, and Ali Wong to Bill Burr, Chris Rock, and Dave Chapelle have all garnered buzz on Netflix. They dropped 47 half-hour specials from around the world on New Years Day with Comedians of the World. Amazon Prime wants a piece of the comedy audience and Jim Gaffigan is the man to give it to them.

Gaffigan is a safe choice for a first original comedy special. He released several of his own specials on Netflix before releasing last year’s Noble Ape to on-demand options. This isn’t a comic trying to work his way out of middling on the road. He’s a professional with a built-in audience.

That built-in audience is accessible to almost all of the key demographics. Gaffigan’s material is generally observing safe topics such as parenting, his obesity, and food. He’s also one of the cleanest comedians working today. In other words, you can pop a Jim Gaffigan special on in a waiting room, in a grocery store, or even at work without having to worry about any provocative subjects being discussed with profanity.

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Gaffigan is also a New York Times Best Selling Author. He earned that honor for 2013s Dad is Fat. He followed that up in 2014 with Food: A Love Story. In 2015, The Jim Gaffigan Show premiered on TV Land. It received positive reviews in both of its seasons. Gaffigan ranked eighth in Forbes highest paid comedians of 2018 list.

Amazon will almost undoubtedly branch out with many different types of comedians as they grow their roster. Gaffigan is a great starting point. His fan base will likely seek out his new special based on announcements on Gaffigan’s social media and other advertisements. A large portion of these fans won’t know and definitely won’t care about streaming wars. They’ll go where their guy is. That gives Amazon access to the sweetest resource of all: untapped, new viewership.

This is also a strategic move for marketing and branding. You can enjoy Gaffigan’s stand-up special and then watch him in the upcoming film Troop Zero, with co-stars Viola Davis (How to Get Away with Murder) and Allison Janney (Mom). It’s not so coincidentally produced by Amazon Studios.

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Gaffigan tapes Quality Time on March 9. So, we should look for the special to hit Amazon Prime sometime in the late Summer or early Fall. Then there’ll be a whole new front in the streaming wars.

Are you excited that Amazon Prime is getting into stand-up comedy? Do you think Netflix has too many specials out there? Let’s discuss in the comments!

Source: Deadline