Nanette, the Netflix special from Australian comedian Hannah Gadsby, territory on the streaming service well over a month ago. For that reason, it should be the last act WIRED is doing a piece on. However, in the six weeks since the special first ceased, the conversation around it has actually increased–and by now, the special has established itself as a sleeper phenomenon. Treating openly with the sexism, homophobia, and assaults Gadsby has dealt with in her working life, Nanette swiftly grew the title most frequently preceded by “Have you seen…” during the typically quiet months of June and July. And in the process, it absolutely upended what a humor special could be in the process.
Which means we needed to talk about it, more. Below we gathered writers and writers Angela Watercutter, Jason Kehe, Alexis Sobel Fitts, and Peter Rubin for a roundtable discussion about Nanette and what, precisely, realise it such an unexpected success.