As Netflix announced today that it beat out HBO to keep Ali Wong in the fold, HBO swings back with their own exclusive stand-up special offerings that will be coming to their streaming service HBO Max next year. It’s a pretty intriguing slate thus far that includes comedy superstar Tracy Morgan, comedy star on-the-rise John Early, New Zealand comedy star making-her-way-stateside Rose Matafeo, and up-and-coming political English comedy star Ahir Shah.
We were actually wondering what would happen to this sort of segment in stand-up comedy as Netflix is currently in the business of doling out hours for comedy’s biggest stars and then giving who they think are up-and-comers (but are somewhat established, certainly enough for an hour special) 30 min. or 15 min. specials. Our hunch was that Amazon and other streaming services/networks like HBO Max would fill in this niche and it is certainly coming to pass. Amazon’s already put out hours from Alice Wetterlund and I Mom So Hard and, from the looks of this announcement, HBO is getting in while the getting is good.