Can we just take a moment to relish the wonder that is Betty White? And the five decades–five decades!–that she’s graced our television screens? And the mounting anticipation of her hosting gig tomorrow night on Saturday Night Live?
By now, it’s old news that White’s helm of SNLbegan as a Facebook campaign. White is surely a comic genius. Here’s hoping her appearance on Saturday matches the hilarity of her Golden Girls days.
I’ve never seen this routine from Chris Rock, who I like an awful lot. He’s got the raunchy fearlessness of Eddie Murphy and Lenny Bruce, and the sharp cultural critiques of Dave Chappelle (whose “Racial Draft” (below) is one of my all-time favorites).
I like Rock so much because here he acknowledges our post-racial world. All his black friends have a bunch of white friends. And all his white friends have…
Exactly one black friend.
Rock recently interviewed African American women for a documentary called Good Hair (which he discussed with Oprah last September), and stirred–ahem–strong emotions from both black and white women. African American women felt almost betrayed by Rock, who showed the lengths black women go to to straighten, perm, and add extensions to their hair. It was a great dialogue in which women of many races conversed openly and honestly.
Margaret Cho, who it’s difficult not to adore, talks with Joy Behar about her refusal to adopt the label “bisexual,” her admiration for Adam Lambert’s queer rock sensibility, and her love of her wacky parents. My favorite bit is when she owns up to why she was kicked off the Obama campaign: she couldn’t stand Sarah Palin’s politics, but she found her so sexy.
James Parker presents a clear analysis of Ricky Gervais and Russell Brand, and their diverse approaches to comedy in this month’s The Atlantic.
As he points out, Gervais is a card-carrying atheist. Brand, too, may well be an atheist, but in Parker’s commentary on this clip, Brand is less focused on metaphysics and more interested in a bit of flirtatious humor with the interviewer. Or, as the author points out, Brand’s “sexual wattage of his grip.”
I admire Parker’s argument that Gervais’ schtick is centered on “littleness”: the details, the micro, the intricacies of his topic. Brand, on the other hand, is driven more by a post-modern, gender-bending approach to humor. Different approaches to a brainy sort of comedy.
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