I can’t sleep because I needed to write about this — and because I need to write, period.
Late Monday night (or really early Tuesday morning, for you sick fucks), Netflix released not one, but two new specials from Dave Chappelle: THE AGE OF SPIN and DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEXAS.
And, just like that, everybody — every writer and every performer — in the comedy world was put on notice.
Chappelle is on a completely different level now, and the time away from the spotlight was good for both him and us. For Dave, he was able to escape the looming shadow of one of the most wildly popular programs in television history. And, on our end, it taught us to not take him for granted.
Watching Chappelle perform is like watching Michael Jordan in the NBA Finals. The delivery, the timing, the control of the crowd — the guy makes everything look effortless… and, speaking as somebody who has stepped on stage, it is almost infuriating.
Right now, it’s time for all of us to evolve — regardless of whether we are doing ‘bringer’ shows, or are on a national tour. The easy jokes and recycled material and overt edginess-over-substance approach has to end now.
Dave Chappelle didn’t just change stand-up (again).
He fucking saved it.