That’s what a very pregnant Ali Wong tells the audience in her new Netflix special, Hard Knock Wife, speaking of her young daughter, whom Wong was carrying during her 2016 special Baby Cobra.
The Mother’s Day release slot is property of Ali Wong, thanks to Baby Cobra, which came out before Mother’s Day two years ago and made her famous enough to be recognized on the street.
This is a hilarious special that becomes thrilling whenever Wong tests her own descriptive powers and the audience’s capacity to absorb images of squalor, misery, or pain.
It’s bracing, in some ways cathartic, to hear a parent talk this way about their experiences, as Wong does here.
Wong describes breastfeeding as if it were a form of torture: “The nurse promised me I would have a particularly easy time because my nipples look like fingers,” she says, then goes on to describe her milk flow as looking like the Fountains of the Bellagio.
In both specials, Wong covers a lot more territory than just pregnancy and motherhood: there’s raw, often hilarious material about sex, dating, and marriage in both, including a period-sex story that ends up feeling curiously inspirational.
There are also absurdist bits about race and feminism that seem like ironic hipster “Politically incorrect” takes that are at risk of turning sour until you realize Wong is mainly just skewering herself.
Wong has perfected that basic yet elusive trick that some writers spend their entire lives failing to master: She makes you feel as if it’s just the two of you, and she trusts you enough to tell you how she really feels.