It is somewhat unclear who Dave Chappelle’s new comedy specials are for. There’s definitely a point to direct it to old fans of Chappelle’s Show: not only was Chappelle a game-changer of a comic, but there’s also nostalgic value in aiming it at this audience. There’s also an aim for fans who weren’t around when Chappelle was in his prime. As cliché as it is, Chappelle pokes fun at a 24 year-old in the audience. The content of Chappelle’s jokes vary from the self-aware, topical humor, and material about people that would seem irrelevant had it not been for recent events bringing them into prominence (i.e. O.J. Simpson and Bill Cosby). Both of Chappelle’s new specials find a pleasing middle ground that sets him both as an older comic trying to reach a new audience and someone acting as if he never left. Continue reading
Especially now, jokes are one of the most important things we’ve got. Whether the jokes come from a place of brutal honesty like Marc Maron or evil fiction like Anthony Jeselnik, it’s important to laugh. Mike Birbiglia’s new Thank God for Jokes discusses how important it is to make jokes with Birbiglia’s emotive honesty and deep thought. Birbiglia doesn’t fail to make you laugh, but there are moments that this special lags at a predictable pace.