Comedians are in a unique position. They make us look at ourselves, our flaws and laugh. They can put the microscope on ugly truths about life, politics, sex and race and make us think. At least the good ones, the ones who are true to their craft. I never thought Steve Carell was funny until I was introduced to The Office in August. Better late than never!!! OMG. Same with Jerry Seinfeld, I was late to the party when it came to “the show about nothing.” But once I gave it a chance, I watched every episode until it went off the air.
I imagine comedy is cathartic for some, as writing is to me. Some comics choose to shine the light on themselves which takes courage. I discovered Kevin Hart’s Laugh At My Pain and will never be the same. I’ve watched all his other stand-up as well. He is relentless when sharing about himself and giving us a glimpse into his life.
I have also discovered a few who are fearless when it comes to politics and have made me lol which can be a challenge: Larry Wilmore and Pauly Shore, Wanda Sykes and Chris Rock (already knew the last two).
Race is another issue that many comics of color attack, from Cho to Lopez to Chapelle. It can make you cry from laughing so hard, but you’re gonna think about it later.
I am reading Black is the New White by Paul Mooney. It is… interesting. It looks at race and Hollywood as well as the friendship of Richard Pryor and Mooney. I was unaware of the behind-the-scenes work of Mooney and better understand why you never really saw him in the limelight.
My favorite comedians are Richard Pryor and Bernie Mack. Who are your favorites?