Jerrod Carmichael’s had a big year. Since his Emmy-winning comedy special, Rothaniel, dropped in April 2022, he’s gained widespread attention with major gigs like hosting Saturday Night Live and the Golden Globes. The latter allowed him to publicly criticize one of the entertainment industry’s largest institutions (the Hollywood Foreign Press Association), a move that during a different time may have made him a pariah in the business. But Carmichael seems to be doing just fine, and continues to be celebrated for the authenticity of his comedy — HBO just announced a comedy documentary project starring Carmichael has been ordered to series.
The as-yet-unnamed series will follow Carmichael on his continued search for “love, sex, and connection,” the HBO announcement reads. The comedian’s partnership with HBO started in 2014 when his first comedy special, Jerrod Carmichael: Love at the Store, debuted. In the years since, HBO aired two more of his comedy specials, Jerrod Carmichael: 8 (2017) and Rothaniel (2022), and two original autobiographical documentaries, Home Videos (2019) and Sermon on the Mount (2019). It’s clear that HBO knows what Carmicheal will bring to the table and supports his vision.
“We’ve loved working with Jerrod over the past 10 years, and to watch him discover new layers of both himself and his comedy,” HBO Executive Vice President of Programming Nina Rostein says in a statement. “‘Rothanial’ [sic] resonated with audiences in such a profound way, and his honesty and vulnerability are a perfect fit for this original format.”
While the term “comedy documentary” might at first bring to mind HBO’s more experimental series The Rehearsal and How to With John Wilson, there’s reason to believe this new series will be something slightly more traditional. Both Home Videos and Sermon on the Mount are framed as video diaries, capturing completely authentic interactions between Carmichael and his friends and family, people he already has an established relationship with. And Rothaniel was so successful in part because of Carmichael’s vulnerability in placing his own life and challenges as the focal point.
While Nathan Fielder and John Wilson’s work embraces absurdism, Carmichael’s greatest skill is mining comedy from very real and personal moments. His upcoming project is sure to take on a completely different tone to expand what defines an HBO comedy docuseries.
Brianna Wellen is a TV Reporter at Primetimer who became obsessed with television when her parents let her stay up late to watch E.R.
TOPICS: Jerrod Carmichael, HBO, How To with John Wilson, Jerrod Carmichael: Home Videos, Jerrod Carmichael: Rothaniel, Jerrod Carmichael: Sermon on the Mount, The Rehearsal