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"Chappelle's Show" Review

By Shawn McKenzie 02/11/2003

David Chappelle is one of those comedians who has never had the spotlight.  He has played mainly supporting roles in movies like Half Baked and The Nutty Professor, along with appearances on “The Howard Stern Show” and “Crank Yankers.”  Like his predecessor in getting his own show, Cedric the Entertainer, he went down the variety show path.  Unlike Cedric, he is not playing it safe at all.  With the semi-safety of being on Comedy Central, Chappelle can do many things that FOX would never allow Cedric to do.


Chappelle’s Show” has a basic setup.  Chappelle comes out to a live audience and introduces (or sometimes warns) them about the upcoming skit.  In between, he does a little stand-up, usually pertaining to the topic of the skit.  The skits are very risk-taking too.  In what could have been a huge water-cooler skit had this show been on a bigger network involved Chappelle portraying a KKK leader who has been blind from birth.  His character has no idea that he is black, but he is so important to the cause that his associates don’t tell him that fact.  It’s not until he takes off his hood at a Klan rally that he is outed.  One could see this skit as distasteful (especially with the liberal use of the n-word throughout it), but it ends up being very funny because of the sheer absurdity of it all.


That KKK skit was just in the first episode.  Other memorable skits in the first episode alone included:  making fun of that car commercial with that weird pop-locking white girl that uses Dirty Vegas’ “Days Gone By” in it, a commercial for a 24-hour stenographer intended to settle arguments, and more.


The second episode continued the hilarity.  Its main skit was about a crack addict trying to preach to a class about the evils of drug abuse when clearly he hadn’t gotten over his own addiction.


The third episode contained even more great stuff.  One skit involved the “out takes” of the original “Roots” mini-series.  Another one involved a parody of It’s a Wonderful Life, but it had nothing to do with Christmas.  A woman wishes she had never been born with large breasts, and Chappelle plays a “guardian angel” that shows her how bad the world would be without them.


Chappelle’s Show” has a perfect home with Comedy Central, the network that has taken risks with shows like “South Park” and “That’s My Bush!”  It is going to offend some people, but anyone who would be offended by the show most likely isn’t ever watching Comedy Central (or shouldn’t be.)  If you like smart, no-holds-barred sketch comedy, check this show out.

Ratings System:


Try to catch this show every week...

If a better show is on, tape this one...

If nothing else is on, maybe this will be good...

If this show is on, change the channel immediately!


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