Kate Berlant is an excellent oddball comic out of New York whom I first saw at the All Jane No Dick comedy festival last year, a well-curated lineup that introduced me to a lot of comics I've followed since. (She will not, regrettably, be in the second installment of the festival, in October, but there are plenty of other great performers on the bill.) The New York Times just discovered her and their article is wonderfully over-the-top:
She may be best understood as an avant-garde theater artist whose aggressive artifice makes the irreverent argument that comedy needn’t be rooted in truth. In 2005 I wrote an essay arguing that the theatrical avant-garde was shrugging off its black turtleneck reputation and embracing broad, silly comedy. In a complementary trend, comedy has expanded its tent to include formally daring artists like Tig Notaro, Reggie Watts and Ms. Berlant. You might call this growing genre experimental comedy.
Although, when he's not inventing unnecessary and not altogether coherent genres of comedy to describe a comic he likes, the writer does make this excellent point:
"This veneration of comedic truth, often at the expense of less-cited virtues like imagination, has become so widespread and unquestioned that comics sound like rappers boasting about being 'real.'
There's something to that. I blame Marc Maron.
The All Jane No Dick festival runs Oct 17-20—consider it your chance to discover the next great new female comics before the New York Times does.