Whoever convinced Mike MacDonald to release a stand-up comedy DVD should be congratulated, feted, and toasted.

This absolutely superb, smart, and clean stand-up comic has been around for some 30 years but had yet to release a stand-up comedy DVD or CD. VSC’s Mike MacDonald A Comic Stripped is a DVD featuring his three CBC stand-up comedy specials from the early nineties. Twenty years later the material is still a propos.

I once got the impression it was because MacDonald did not release a CD or DVD because he did not think the material aged well. On Target (1990), My House My Rules (1992) and Happy As I Can Be (1993) are all funny and fresh.

The best of the three stand-up comedy specials on this DVD is My House, My Rules. This is a 45-minute or so autobiographical piece about growing up in the seventies, being a teenager, and MacDonald’s parents and brothers. If you ever grew up, you will recognize yourself in this special.

The more serious of the three specials is Happy As I Can Be. MacDonald begins with light fare such as technology and the decreasing patience level in our society, has an interesting bit on death, trying to start a family. He gets much more topical than usual with a series of pieces on what are still hot button issues like homophobia, racism, and abortion and pro-choice. Everything works in Happy As I Can Be, proving once again how talented MacDonald is.

The comparatively lesser of the comedy specials on this Mike MacDonald DVD is On Target. Comparatively lesser is the key here. The footage is a little grainy, basically VHS quality. The bits on Fatal Attraction and being faithful is but one of the many relationship comedy bits here. Unlike any other comic, when MacDonald does relationship comedy it is not to put down his wife in any way, far from it.

Mike MacDonald A Comic Stripped is a must have DVD. Now only is someone could get on this guy’s back again and get more stuff released.

The special feature on this DVD is a Just For Laughs piece with Mike MacDonald doing his air guitar piece. Brilliant.

A Comic Stripped
Mike MacDonald
Stand-up Comedy DVD
VSC 2010
130 minutes

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