Stand-up comedian Felipa Esparza performs in his Netflix comedy special, “Bad Decisions.” Photo Credit: Patrick Wymore/Netflix 

This year has been disastrous for stand-up comedy, as many comedians have been sidelined from performing and many venues have shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

But 2020 has been a surprisingly good year for stand-up comedy specials on television, particularly ones performed by Latino comics. Many of the specials made available this year on services such as Netflix and HBO Max were filmed before the pandemic took hold, but released while many families were stuck at home and badly in need of laughs.

As the holidays approach, and people across the country brace for more months at home with family, here are a few of the best Latino comedy specials released in 2020 that you might have missed:

“Gina Brillon: The Floor is Lava.” The New York City comedian’s third stand-up special is available on Amazon Prime Video and is a confidently hilarious look at city living, marriage, and “Broke people games.”

“Felipe Esparza: Bad Decisions.” The “Last Comic Standing” winner who more recently appeared on “The Eric Andre Show” performs his act as two 60-minute specials, one version in English, the other in Spanish. You can find this one on Netflix

“George Lopez: We’ll Do It For Half.” The most recent stand-up special from comic and sitcom actor George Lopez may be his most overtly political act yet, with chunks on immigration, 2020 politics, and Latinx culture. It’s available on Netflix.

“The Ha Festival: The Art of Comedy Special.” This star-studded comedy show, filmed in San Antonio, Texas in February, is hosted by Angelah Johnson and features Pedro Salinas, Mark Viera, Danny Trejo, Carmen Lynch, Eugenio Derbez, and many others. You can find it on HBO Max.” 

“Entre Nos.” A regular series featuring comedians including Mark Viera, Shayla Rivera, Nick Guerra, Francisco Ramos and other up-and-comers debuted this summer on HBO. It’s available on HBOLatino and HBO Max. Nine episodes are currently available.

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Author

Omar L. Gallaga is a freelance journalist living in Central Texas who has written for NPR, The Wall Street Journal, Rolling Stone, Engadget, Hispanic Magazine, CNN, MSNBC, and The Washington Post. He was a longtime technology and culture writer at The Austin American-Statesman, where he helped launch the newspaper ¡ahora sí! and two podcasts.