Tuesday, October 26News That Matters

Tag: Comedy and Humor

Dave Chappelle Isn’t Canceled. He Just Likes to Talk About It.

Dave Chappelle Isn’t Canceled. He Just Likes to Talk About It.

LifeStyle
The first time Dave Chappelle wanted to quit a TV show, he didn’t do it. After shooting the pilot of his soon-to-be-forgotten 1996 ABC sitcom, “Buddies,” an amiable comedy about an interracial friendship, the network fired his co-star Jim Breuer, which led Chappelle to tell his manager he wanted to quit.He was talked out of it, and the show got poor reviews and was canceled after five episodes. When I interviewed one of the co-creators, Matt Williams, several years ago for an e-book about Chappelle, he told me he wished he had built more conflict between the leads. “Then you could capitalize on the charisma of Chappelle,” he said. “But he was different then. He was impish. He was playful, innocent. No danger.”As controversy boils over Chappelle’s latest special, “The Closer,” I have been t...
Chappelle Special on Netflix Draws Criticism and Internal Unrest

Chappelle Special on Netflix Draws Criticism and Internal Unrest

Business
“Netflix has gone from the underdog and outsider poking the establishment to the epicenter of the Hollywood establishment,” he said. “When you’re at the center, everything is magnified 100 times. This is going to happen more and more as society itself wrestles with these issues. With Netflix, what will make it further complicated is that it’s a global company with massive international ambitions.”Mr. Chappelle, 48, has had a long and celebrated career, winning an Emmy for his 2018 Netflix special, “Equanimity,” and Grammys for albums taken from the Netflix specials “The Age of Spin,” “Deep in the Heart of Texas” and “Sticks & Stones.” In 2019, he won the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Last year, he earned raves from critics for “8:46,” a heartfelt show on the death of George Floy...

Give Phoebe Robinson the Title She Deserves: Boss

LifeStyle
A week later, Robinson said she was too in her head in that show, that she needed to remind herself to have fun. “It’s hard to stay in the moment for someone like me who is always thinking about the next 20 moves,” she said by phone.Robinson had done a chunk of material about the difference between her 20s and 30s, including one bit about being more concerned with frivolous things earlier, like shaving body hair, which she did so much, she said, “that she didn’t read a book for 10 years.”Now she’s an author and publisher who tries to read a book a week. “I miss that innocence a bit,” she said, explaining that she didn’t have to worry about her employees or brand back then. A few years later, her profile would grow thanks to a regular show with Jessica Williams called “2 Dope Queens” that m...

Comedians Turn Their Attention to Abortion

LifeStyle
Her offhandedness is part of her charm, but it has a purpose. Leiby wants to give us a portrait of abortion not as a crisis or a moral question, but as a common and confusing medical procedure. The broader context of this show, as she reminds the audience, is a culture of silence surrounding women. From sex education to birth control, she explains how much is unspoken, rushed through or hidden from view. Leiby even shocked herself when she called Planned Parenthood, she says, and in asking about an abortion, whispered the word. She mocks the vague ads for birth control and imagines an honest one in which a 37-year-old woman wakes up in a cold sweat screaming next to a mediocre white man, which leads to a scene of him eating Cheetos in a hospital room as she gives birth.Leiby doesn’t move m...
Ashley Nicole Black Is Competing Against Herself for an Emmy

Ashley Nicole Black Is Competing Against Herself for an Emmy

LifeStyle
At first, Ashley Nicole Black didn’t get why people kept sending her the meme of Spider-Man pointing at an identical Spider-Man, an image often used to joke about situations in which two incredibly similar people face off.But when someone Photoshopped Ms. Black’s face onto both Spider-Mans, it clicked. The 2021 Emmy Awards nominations had just been announced, and Ms. Black, 36, had been nominated twice in the same category.She was competing against herself.Ms. Black was nominated for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series for “The Amber Ruffin Show” and “A Black Lady Sketch Show.” Two other people have been nominated twice in this category in the past five years: John Mulaney and Seth Meyers, both in 2019.“I feel like that kid still, who’s on the side of the playground, who nobody’s noti...
The Best Way to Respond to Text Messages

The Best Way to Respond to Text Messages

Technology
That is where “HA HA” stands alone. This perfect little blue pill solves a problem that has always vexed my relationships with comedians or anyone trying to tell me a joke — a perceived unwillingness on my part to adequately “give it up.” It’s no exaggeration to say that this Tapback has saved many of my friendships.I love comedy, but, to my great detriment, I react to jokes the same way my 6-year-old son appreciates his toys — by taking them apart and trying to figure out what makes them work. I’ve also never been an “LOL” person, especially over text. It’s uncomfortably performative, like typing “Ouch!” when you accidentally sit on your car keys. Though I have my own deep well of need tethered to every joke I attempt, it still makes me anxious when people use “LOL” too generously. Its mo...
Tig Notaro’s ‘Drawn’ Explores Strange New Worlds: Animated Ones

Tig Notaro’s ‘Drawn’ Explores Strange New Worlds: Animated Ones

LifeStyle
One day during the production of her new, animated stand-up special, Tig Notaro was presented with a rough illustrated version of an anecdote about her double mastectomy. In the bit, Notaro ponders what her doctors might have done with her discarded breasts after the surgery she underwent following a 2012 cancer diagnosis. What if, she asks, the remains had been tossed in a Hollywood dumpster? Might they have been left for rodents to play tug of war with?The rough animation added an irreverent detail of its own: A car speeding by the dumpster in the night, thoughtlessly flattening Notaro’s forgotten flesh.“They had drawn a tire track going over my boob,” Notaro said.She loved it. But perhaps, she told her director, Greg Franklin, the image could use one more detail to take it from good to ...
‘Ted Lasso’ Is Back, but No Longer an Underdog

‘Ted Lasso’ Is Back, but No Longer an Underdog

LifeStyle
The thing Bill and I talked about in the pitch was this antithesis of the cocktail of a human man who is both ignorant and arrogant, which lo and behold, a Batman-villain version of it became president of the United States right around the same time. What if you played an ignorant guy who was actually curious? When someone used a big word like “vernacular,” he didn’t act like he knew it, but just stops the meeting like, “Question, what does that mean?”And also the idea of just saying please and thank you — I remember holding doors for people when I first got hired at “Saturday Night Live,” and they would stop, thinking I’m going to hit them in the butt or something. It was always really funny to me, and so it was based on those observations about what was going on with society and discours...
Joe Rogan Is Too Big to Cancel

Joe Rogan Is Too Big to Cancel

Business
He has appeared to attribute his own popularity to an underserved market, recently recalling the bafflement of advertising professionals over his audience demographics. “They’re like, ‘Jesus Christ, he’s got like 94 percent men. Like, what is going on here?’” Mr. Rogan said in May, probably exaggerating the figure a bit. “I’m like, ‘It’s because they’re not represented. Men are not represented.’”For listeners, the attachment is visceral, communal — a “monoculture of free-thinkers,” as Marc Maron, the fellow podcaster and comedian, has said of the Rogan-inclined masses, tweaking a group that can descend on its targets as an online bloc.Comics say they have become instantly recognizable to new fans as far afield as Australia after appearing on Mr. Rogan’s show. Shanna Swan, a reproductive ep...
You Won’t Have Andy Richter to Sidekick Around Anymore

You Won’t Have Andy Richter to Sidekick Around Anymore

LifeStyle
Definitely, I was concerned about people saying that. I personally did not feel that was the case. At that point, I had had three sitcoms, two of which I helped produce and create, which I’m very proud of. One was just a gig. I had pitched a sketch comedy to Comedy Central and that fell apart. That was a blow. I was like, come on — I’ve been on TV for this long and I can’t get a sketch show on Comedy Central? So when Conan asked me to come back, I was like, hell yes, I’ll come back to making immediate TV. And to work with people I knew and loved. Who am I to turn down being the sidekick on “The Tonight Show”? That’s like a tenured professor of television. And it was ideally supposed to last as long as we wanted it to. Join Times theater reporter Michael Paulson in conver...