Tig Notaro: Hilarious comedian makes documentary about breast cancer, motherhood and love
The documentary is a dip in its most personal moments
Breast cancer is a very serious and threatening disease for women. Comedian Tig Notaro knows this very well. And it is told to us through a documentary full of emotion, truth and a lot of laughter.
Tig is a very special kind of comedian. The main reason I love her is because she has this serious smiley style and monotony in her voice. It throws the attack and remains unexpressed. No fanfares, no exaggerations in delivery. Watch the episode on Netflix and you will understand what I mean.
The documentary (which you will also find on Netflix) is more than just a comic book story. It is a dip in its most personal moments. The collapse at the scene due to a severe pneumonia, the death of her mother after a week, the diagnosis of breast cancer, the double mastectomy. I do not know if this is a documentary about breast cancer or about life itself. How to survive when the pressures go back and forth and you do not manage to digest one so as to manage the next.
The loss of her mother and the cancer came at a very strange time, but they did not stand in the way. That was when Tig had already decided she wanted to be a mother. The treatments did not allow her to conceive herself, and this is something she learns in front of the camera.
However, the purpose of "Tig" is not to fetishize pain and cry over vanity and the realization of how hard life can become. There is light and that is exactly what Notaro wants to show. At that time he met her partner, Stephanie Allynne, with whom she was originally friends. They came closer and shared together the journey of gaining a family through a surrogate mother. In 2016, they had their twin sons, Max and Finn, and they are together to this day.
Humor as a means of relief (and not only for her)
When we talk about serious illnesses, we tend to think only pessimistically and fall into deep depression. It is a very normal reaction and each of us reacts very differently to difficult situations. Tig Notaro comes as a very good reminder of the moments when life becomes merciless and we are called to continue. It also reminds us of the value of humor and self-sarcasm. It works as a relief and helps all those who identify. "For a lifetime I used to say that my chest is flat and now it is taking revenge on me. Are you like that I will kill you ", says Tig during a stand up, in which she announces her illness and makes it the central issue.