“To tell a teenager that she stick to lip gloss - when she’s being directly impacted by policies affecting her lifestyle and the lifestyle of those around her - is frankly irresponsible.” - Teen Vogue’s Phillip Picardi on The Daily Show
As the American-born child of parents who emigrated from India, comic Hasan Minhaj often feels a little out of place. “I exist in this hyphen,” he says. “I’m an Indian-American-Muslim kid, but am I more Indian or am I more American? What part of my identity am I?”
Those are the kinds of questions Minhaj deliberately sidestepped when was getting his start in comedy. “It was almost like I was on the playground all over again,” he says of his early career. “I just was afraid if I get real … people aren’t going to like it; they’re going to think I’m a freak.”
After years doing stand-up, Minhaj became a correspondent with The Daily Show in 2014. The following year, he starred in Homecoming King, a one-man stand-up show in which he began to open up on stage about his experiences as a “third culture kid” who doesn’t fully share in either the culture of his parents or that of his hometown of Davis, Calif.
“It wasn’t until I started exploring the personal stuff, the one-man-show stuff, that I kind of got a chance to be more open to the audience and to my family,” he says.
Minhaj’s new stand-up special, which is also called Homecoming King, is available on Netflix starting Tuesday.