Jim Gaffigan is back with his fifth special, “One for each of my five children and hopefully my last,” he states in the early stages of Cinco, now streaming on Netflix. Gaffigan is at his absolute best in his latest effort deconstructing his current situation as if he were an auto-mechanic taking a car apart piece by piece. All the way to down to the final lug nut. He explains how he’s become fat, lazy, and confused garnering inspiration from the grandparents in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Being a father has put him in quite a pickle. When his kids ask if they could go outside and experience life he responds without skipping a beat, “No. It’s closed.” Activities just aren’t on his agenda at any time. “You know how the first thing you notice when you go hiking is that it was a mistake.”
Gaffigan is more comfortable than ever in his skin on stage and beyond relatable to the point that you feel like he’s simply narrating your life with geo-targeted positioning. Originally from the mid-west, he discusses how his family must have been tricked into moving there because of the misery it has brought upon his family. Binge watching, fairs, and of course food are all additional subjects slayed by pinpoint accuracy only Gaffigan can provide.
When breaking down his current outfit, the comic expresses the sympathy he has for his belt, “I could have been a watchband for David Beckham!” And then Gaffigan goes on a five minute joking spree about belts while weaving in and out of the now famous voice found inside his head and his sloth-like outside voice. Sarcasm, wit, self deprecation, honesty, and just the right amount of awkward reliability are all in abundance on Cinco.
Comedy is something that he’s been attracted to since day one, eventually moving to New York City to pursue it leaving Chesterton, IN behind. This has lead to his illustrious and rewarding career in stand-up, acting, writing, and animation which culminated in a pinnacle performance at Madison Square Garden as well as his own television series on TV Land aptly titled, The Jim Gaffigan Show. A semi-autobiographical series about his life bringing his real life kids into the fold. Gaffigan does this again at the top of Cinco where his family is featured in what only can be described as an homage to the Close Encounters of the Third Kind films of the past. His family is awakened in the middle of the night by a mysterious noise coming from the kitchen’s refrigerator. At first you’re not sure if you are watching his new special or a trailer for a new sci-fi thriller due out in the summer. His kids do a fantastic job. They are sure to follow in their father’s footsteps.
Cinco rounds out nicely with a discussion about mullets, why men don’t really change their clothes, who really runs this world, and how exhausting parenting is. Gaffigan leaves you wanting more and wishing you were on a 12 hour road trip so you could get lost in his thoughts of perfection for the entire trip. This special also makes us wish there was a drawstring stuffed animal version of Jim available for purchase for those times we come to a crossroads in our life and need a helping hand. We could just pull the string and have the answers sarcastically delivered to us from the voice of the man who sees the world with such honesty and simplicity. It would just say, “Take a nap” or “Sleep through it and it will just go away” every time you pulled it. Gaffigan is Catholic and doesn’t shy away from that fact. So if there really is a Jesus and he is set to return, let’s all hope he or she is a lot like Jim.
You can stream Jim Gaffigan: Cinco right now on Netflix.