There was a time not long ago when comedian Natasha Leggero saw motherhood as an avoidable mistake. “I had a joke that having a baby is like having a DUI from the universe,” Leggero recalls. “That is really what I thought.” Cut to February, when Leggero, 44, welcomed her first child, a baby girl, with husband and fellow comedian Moshe Kasher. Prior to motherhood, Leggero tackled subjects such as classism and gender politics through a comic persona of faux refinement; she made a name for herself as the co-creator and star of the Comedy Central sitcom “Another Period,” a panelist on the network’s popular “Roast” series, and a regular on the late-night TV circuit. What does Leggero’s comedy look like now, as she enters a new phase of life? “At this point, I feel like I’m just overdressed and over it,” she jokes. “And I am definitely inspired by having the kid, so I have a lot to say about that.” Leggero will muse about motherhood (and more) when she visits Arlington for a series of stand-up shows this weekend.
Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse, 2903 Columbia Pike; Fri., 7:30 & 10 p.m., Sat., 7 & 9:30 p.m., $25.
Congratulations on being a new mother. How is parenthood treating you?
Everyone says how fast it goes, but it does seem like it’s going very slowly. Definitely it’s fun, and we’re glad we did it, but what I didn’t anticipate was how now 70 percent of my mental energy goes toward worrying about her, which is pretty taxing.
You joked extensively about your then-impending motherhood in “The Honeymoon Stand Up Special,” which you filmed with your husband and released in April on Netflix. How have your expectations lined up with reality?
Nothing really can prepare you. One thing I wasn’t quite clear on is that as a woman, it really does take a lot to have the baby. I had to pump myself full of fertility drugs, then I had to carry the baby, then I had to give birth to the baby, then I had to have the baby suck on my t--s for six months, and now I’ve got this body from having a baby that I’ve got to get rid of. It takes a man a whole three days to recover.
Your stand-up often tackles sensitive subjects. In that Netflix special, for example, you spoke to audience members about their experiences dealing with sexual misconduct. How do you go about approaching that kind of material?
I think that you just have to be sensitive, and I feel like I’m lucky right now because I’m a woman and a lot of the stuff I want to talk about is anti-men. That is actually accepted right now, so that’s kind of cool. That is encouraged, almost. But a man who wants to be anti-woman, I think he’s going to have a hard time out there.
Having been a stand-up for a decade-plus, how do you feel your comedic voice has evolved over the years?
For a long time, my main point of view was that I hated children and I would never have one. Then I decided when I met Moshe that I would have one baby with him — I made him promise we would only have one — and then you have that, and that changes you, and you just have to evolve and grow.
How does that growth come through in your comedy?
Sometimes I’ll be doing stand-up and I’ll have seven minutes of jokes about being a new mom, and I realize the crowd is too young and no one has a kid. So I’m just sort of feeling it out. Please, if you have kids, come see me. And now I’m sure I’m scaring the young people!