Aziz Ansari has become the latest comedian to self-release a stand-up special on his website — Dangerously Delicious, which features an hour of Ansari's undeniably vulgar-yet-hilarious comedy, is now available to stream or download from his site for the low cost of five dollars. Aziz follows in the footsteps of Louis C.K. and Jim Gaffigan, who released (or are planning to release) their own DRM-free standup specials on their respective websites. Judging by some comments Ansari made to the New York Times, we wouldn't be surprised if the freedom of the internet-only medium drives him to release more specials this way. "It's a very rare thing, where you answer to no one at all as a comedian," Ansari said.
In addition to the creative freedom, Ansari also feels that the straight-to-web strategy makes a lot more sense than releasing DVDs and CDs: "if I just put it out in a traditional way, I wouldn't have made any money, so why don't I do it this way?" It wouldn't surprise us at all to see more up-and-coming comedians make the internet a main distribution channel — it's hard to go wrong when you have full control over your art in addition to making a little money for it. That said, Gaffigan and Louis C.K. both said they weren't necessarily planning on going digital-only for the future, and a former Showtime and HBO executive was quoted as saying "The first person that does 30,000 buys instead of 200,000, that person's going to sit there and say, ‘Why did I fail?' And it's going to affect them as an asset." We're hoping comedians continue to find success operating independently — we'll take a cheaper, DRM-free product any day.
Please note that the following video contains plenty of vulgar language.