By: Robert Kyte
Photo by: Mikko Castaño
“Parents, if you brought your kids here tonight, now would be the time to cover their ears. But also, what the f**k is wrong with you?”.
Nick Offerman is not a comedian, nor is he a musician, but holds the self-bestowed title of ‘humorist’: a mixture of the two brought to life in a way that it seems only he can muster. Unfiltered, unfettered, and most importantly untrimmed, Full Bush is 90 minutes of Offerman’s uncensored opinions on all the things in life you would never talk to your mother about—or your father, for that matter.
Offerman began the show as unceremoniously as one would expect from the Illinois native, entering from stage left at a leisurely pace to thunderous applause, garbed in flannel and denim. With an explanation of the meaning behind the title “Full Bush,” the actor first confirmed that, without going into too much detail myself (though he certainly did), it means exactly what you think it means. But Offerman, both as Ron Swanson on Parks & Recreation and as the man himself, has always managed to offer sage advice amidst his suggestive humor and dry wit. To Offerman, Full Bush is more than just a hygienic practice—it is a way of life: “Figure out something you love to do” he expressed, “and find a way to get paid to do it.”
Of course, Offerman is a man of his word. He always has and continues to practice what he preaches. As an atypical figure in Hollywood with a farm-raised upbringing, this distinguishing characteristic led him to meet his wife, Megan Mullally. During a slump in his acting career in 2000, he decided to return to the theatre and put his woodworking skills to use as a set builder for a play that Mullally was starring in. “When I met Megan” he said, “I was living in a literal hole of dirt and stone under my friend’s house, and she had just finished the second season of Will & Grace. I didn’t pay rent on the condition that I would renovate it into a livable space. The best part about living there” he said, “was that I could piss on the dirt floor and, by morning, you couldn’t tell where it had happened.”
Mullally was a subject of high praise throughout the show as Offerman shared details that most people would consider intimate to say the least. As any fan of Parks & Rec would know, the couple has always been relatively open about their relationship both as a point of humor and of honesty. Considering that the duo’s original intention was to tour together under the title “Summer of 69: No Apostrophe,” it came as no surprise when Offerman backtracked through the majority of his experiences with the opposite sex, beginning at the age of 13 and a particular encounter with an older student at band camp.
Offerman’s main talking points were punctuated by original songs about Facebook, Siri, a ukulele (that he made himself), and the adventures that followed when hiding a Jesus-shaped flask in his…well, you get the picture.
To begin the final sequence of Full Bush, Offerman reminded us that he is in fact an actor, “which means I can take anything as a compliment.” He followed with a tweet from one of his fans that read something like: “I just saw Nick Offerman without his mustache and I vomited and died.” As the audience was certainly wondering why Offerman appeared clean-shaven (at least visibly), he shared that because his first major role as Ron Swanson became so popular and recognizable, the actor feels that it’s necessary to appear differently. Otherwise, he fears that casting directors will see him at auditions and say, “hey, why the f**k is Ron Swanson here?”
But despite a few shared characteristics, including his overly-infectious giggle that he sprinkled throughout the show, Offerman made sure to distinguish himself from the fan-favorite curmudgeon in the aptly titled tune, “I Am Not Ron Swanson.” He exited the stage as unceremoniously as he entered, leaving an audience with everything to be expected (and more than a few intimacies) from a man as predictably unpredictable as Nick Offerman.
While the majority of the humorist’s points of discussion were things you’ve probably cleared from your search history, he made sure to visit and revisit one overarching theme: we should talk about these things. Whether with your friends, your significant other, or that girl you met at Brown House, it is healthy to practice open discussion, particularly on subjects we’d rather avoid. In Full Bush, Offerman begins to set the perfect example.