Beth Stelling: If You Didn’t Want Me Then Review

By Romey Norton
Published: October 3, 2023 (Last updated: October 25, 2023)


Armed with her sleepy-time tea, Beth brings her dry, underplayed, storytelling comedy to the screens, and it makes a fine, easy evening watch.

Well, we certainly want her now! From the Victoria Theatre in Dayton, Ohio (her hometown), comedian Beth Stelling and Netflix bring us a one-hour comedy special in If You Didn’t Want Me Then, and fans are sure to be delighted. The comedian makes jokes about aging in dog years, camping with a fake husband, and monitoring her dad’s raccoon army.

If you’re not familiar with Beth Stelling, here is a little background for you. Beth released her first comedy album, Sweet Beth, which helped her gain attention and establish her as a rising talent in comedy circles. Her career really took off when she made her television debut on Conan in 2014. Over the last ten years, she’s performed on popular programs like Jimmy Kimmel Live!, The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail, and Last Call with Carson Daly.

I bet she feels like a huge star now hitting the screens of Netflix and being able to share her comedy worldwide. 

Beth Stelling: If You Didn’t Want Me Then Review

It’s a laid-back style of comedy, nothing too political or slap-your-face silly. For example, she’s wearing plain black jeans and a plain black t-shirt, not fancy or exuberant, she’s just being her plain old self. The backdrop is a classic theatre stage, and the simplicity is lovely to see since we can focus on her jokes and her facial expressions. 

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Beth’s storytelling is where her comedy is strongest as she’s captivating when engrossed in a tale. These monologues and reflections on growing older, on her relationship with her mother and sisters, all are relatable so there is something for everyone to enjoy. I resonated with the “tree trunk” legs and discussions about getting older.

Now, it’s not all cute stories — she throws some jokes about death and pedophilia in there, and her dead guinea pigs. 

Beth Stelling: If You Didn’t Want Me Then Review

I love how she’s performing in her hometown. Beth was born and raised in Oakwood, Ohio, a suburb of Dayton. Here she honed her skills by participating in the Ohio Speech and Debate Association Championship in Humorous Interpretation during high school. This shows what a down-to-earth and humble person she is. Beth makes small references to the town, like setting her stories in local stores and getting huge reactions from the audience. However, we don’t see these reactions, just hear them. 

I would have enjoyed some shots of the audience laughing and reacting to her comedy (we get some shots at the very end showing standing ovations — rightly so — and some snippets during the credits.) It’s also great to see the size of the audience. Not that the amount matters, but seeing the whole auditorium helps build the scene. There is a section where she tries to get some audience participation when talking about the pill, and only one speaks out. This can be daunting for some comedians but Beth handles it like a pro and it turns out to be a very funny segment. 

Even though I wasn’t screaming laughing, there are certain parts that really made me giggle, and overall it is easy and inoffensive to watch. No being canceled on the cards here! 

Is Beth Stelling: If You Didn’t Want Me Then worth watching?

Despite some obvious exceptions like Whitney Cummings, Nikki Glazer, Iliza Schlesinger, Taylor Tomlinson, and Amy Schumer, it could be argued that female comedians are still underplayed and underappreciated in the mainstream, so I implore you to give this comedy special a try. It’s one hour of dry, witty stories which are guaranteed to make you laugh. I know I’ll certainly watch Beth’s comedy again. 

What did you think of Beth Stelling: If You Didn’t Want Me Then? Comment below.

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