Liz Miele Is Familiar and Fun on Murder Sheets

Comedy Reviews Liz Miele
Liz Miele Is Familiar and Fun on Murder Sheets

There’s value to musical artists evolving and entering different eras, but many of us admittedly want bands we love to make the same sort of songs over and over and over again. We adore those tunes for a reason: the way the singers’ voices mix together, the random guitar solo at the end of a song, the thumping beat that stirs something deep within us. 

Similarly, we love our favorite comedians for their style and consistency; sure, it’s exciting to see them change things up drastically, however, the reason we return to the same stand-ups is because we enjoy their comedic rhythm. New Jersey comedian Liz Miele has nailed her flow on stage. She began performing stand-up at just 16, and over the following years has crafted a cadence keenly designed for her storytelling-focused sets. 

Her fifth special Murder Sheets, which Miele self-produced and self-released on YouTube, opens with her typically shrugging introduction to the audience before she starts “complaining immediately.” It’s akin to the beginning of her 2022 special The Ghost of Academic Future, but in a way that is familiar rather than tired, like when you catch up with an old friend and notice they have the same endearing vocal tics and turns of phrase years later. 

Speaking of which, Miele’s voice is low and calm as she sets up her jokes, quickly picking up speed and volume as she grows more heated. Her fury expands to fill the stage and her hands are splayed starfish as she reassures the audience that she’s in the right. Sometimes her intensity and emphasis lose their oomph when overused, but on the whole her zero-to-60 delivery is tailor-made for her gripes about men’s dating profiles, the loss of reproductive rights, and UPS’ inefficiency. Miele is an excellent storyteller, using her voice and energetic physical comedy to hilariously drive home points.

Over the course of the Bell House-taped special, Miele also lets us know she’s her niece’s favorite, delves into the struggles of being the eldest child, and recalls getting so high she thought her longtime roommate was plotting against her. Murder Sheets takes its name from a bit early on in the set, in which Miele starts talking at hyper speed, imagining herself as a femme fatale that kills men with her bedding. Her rapid patter is impressive and also just side-splittingly hilarious (even if the Amber Heard / Johnny Depp mention doesn’t really work). 

Miele closes out Murder Sheets on a high with an 11-minute joke about her late cat Pasta and close friend Prakash that earns every moment. No spoilers, but Miele really sticks the landing here. The credits are also worth watching, since the tag videos are both funny and heartwarming, calling back to previous bits from the special. In short, Miele kills it with Murder Sheets.

Murder Sheets is streaming for free on YouTube.

Clare Martin is a cemetery enthusiast and Paste’s assistant comedy editor. Go harass her on Twitter @theclaremartin.

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