A year ago yesterday, Bo Burnham released Inside on Netflix. It was one of those rare specials that got ingrained into the pop culture lexicon. For months, the special was seemingly everywhere, as was Bo. However, Bo went out of his way to not talk about the special in the last year, simply letting the special speak for itself.
Curious fans finally got a good glimpse into the Emmy, Grammy, and Critics Choice Award winning special yesterday. First, he cryptically tweeted out “Stay tuned…”. This was followed by Bo detailing he’d be dropping an Outakes special on his YouTube channel an hour later. True to his word, that’s just what he did.
a year ago today, i released a special called inside. i’ve spent the last two months editing together material that i shot for the special but didn’t end up using. it will be on my youtube channel in one hour. i hope you enjoy it.
— Bo Burnham (@boburnham) May 31, 2022
It’s an hour long special that features loads of new material, behind-the-scenes footage, alternative takes, cut monologues, and more. It serves its purpose as far as giving fans an additional inside look at how the special came together. However, he also is completely candid throughout the creative process. He is narrating that – after a month – he has nothing he has deemed useable. He is seen yelling in frustration, contemplating whether or not a special effect will work the way he intended it to. (He did).
It’s super raw throughout, and provides a look at what we can only imagine was a frustrating 14-month process in trying to assemble Inside. At the end of the special, you do have a deeper appreciation for just how he managed to pull it all off, all whilst considering growing frustrated at the state of affairs in the midst of 2020.
At one moment in particular, he announces he’s scrapping the special entirely. His reasoning behind this was ”because the thing I’m writing about isn’t ending. So it’s hard to end whatever this is. I feel like I’m waiting for some big idea that’s going to tie it all together and make sense of it and satisfy me. But I don’t think that’s going to happen.” Thankfully, he was able to find the ending he was looking for.
Other highlights throughout include a rant about people who say their least favorite word is “moist,” a song dedicated to his long-time girlfriend, a monologue questioning why he started posting videos in the first place, alternate versions of Bezos, and an emotional song about the chicken that crossed the road. But perhaps the song that will get people talking most is his Joe Biden “tribute,” in which he is frustrated that “they’re really gonna make me vote for Joe Biden.”
Another takeaway is that the special had a lot more parodies of internet and social media culture than what made the final cut. Throughout the special you see various parody ads, content creation, a hilariously spot-on send-up of what we can only assume is The Joe Rogan Experience, and more.
If you found yourself wishing Inside was an extra hour in length, then this is definitely worth checking out!