Strutting across the stage with the swagger of a confident newcomer and the casually steely backbone of a veteran, Leslie Jones has camera presence for days, blessed with a smile that could light up a room and an ebullient, infectious, downright mischievous energy. As brash as she is candid, Jones has a remarkable knack with audience rapport, able to both engage and soothe her audience, sometimes in the course of a single interaction like nothing could be more natural. She tackles a variety of subjects throughout the special’s length, including her insistence that young adults should enjoy themselves as much as possible to the gradual differences between youth and maturity, with the natural cadence of an experienced conversationalist. She appears entirely at ease with herself both as a person and as a performer, which adds a genuinely electric honesty to her routine because you feel as though you’re just hanging out with her instead of watching a professional comic. I’ll admit it does start to run out of steam as it approaches the credits, and maybe she goes back to some of the same jokes a few times too many, but I still had a smile on my face just about the entire time.
Rating: ★★★★ (out of 5)