Stream it or skip it?


In 2021, Netflix announced the latest stand-up special in its deal with Dave Chappelle. Too early!? Turns out Chappelle has a new special deal for four, but he’s the one featuring other stand-up comedians in their own specials for the streaming giant. The first of this agreement is Earthquake.

The essential: We start with a close-up of Dave Chappelle, in his usual pose, sitting on a stool and smoking a cigarette, announcing the date he first met the comedian known as Earthquake. “July 28, 1993.” Earthquake picked up Chappelle in Atlanta, driving him in a Lexus to the comedy club that Earthquake co-owned. And then Chappelle saw Earthquake play. “Now the guy was a beast, on stage and off.”

Born Nathaniel Stroman, the 58-year-old dubbed for a natural disaster hosts a radio show on Kevin Hart’s SiriusXM satellite radio station. You may have seen him in a half-hour special for HBO in 2005, in Shaquille O’Neals’ star comedy jams, or perhaps more recently in recurring sitcom roles on Everybody Hates Chris or The neighborhood.

2021 Comedy Special Earthquake
Photo: Mathieu Bitton/Netflix

What comedy specials will this remind you of? : The Chappelle series recalls Netflix’s previous deal with Tiffany Haddish (They are ready), except the comedians Chappelle handpicked are already more than ready for their close-ups.

Memorable jokes: “These are no jokes” may remain its slogan, but Earthquake also makes the point from the outset that “health is wealth”, stressing the importance not only of getting vaccinated against COVID-19, but also for people. basic health care such as getting insurance and getting an annual medical checkup.

For any black Americans still wary about the vaccine, Earthquake does, indeed, have some jokes. He will chastise his friends and family right away, noting, for example, how easily they put drugs up their noses or continue to live with contaminated water in Flint, Michigan. It also doubles. How can you think Benadryl will solve your diabetes? “It’s not all about your allergies!” Obamacare is President Barack Obama’s legacy, so how can you not have health insurance or get basic care now? !

And by practicing what he preaches himself, Earthquake, although “rich in the blessing of my God”, discovers that he needs a prostate exam, which male comedians can’t resist. mine for comedies and laughs.

The comedian also takes issue with Trump and his supporters, reminding the audience that Republicans are changing the voting rules today because “we showed the trick,” and imagining how he would have reacted had he been a Capitol police officer on January 6. , 2021. In case you didn’t know that Earthquake spent 11 years in the US Air Force after high school, he’ll make it clear by explaining once again why the late John McCain was a true war hero.

There’s also fatherhood stuff here, but it’s not as memorable as the previous track, in which he recounts attending Aretha Franklin’s lengthy funeral, and using that as a transition to wondering what it would look like he showed up late at Heaven’s Gate, with a zinger on the guy standing next to him, stuck outside the gates.

Our opinion : Any issues I may have with this stage are relatively minor.

It’s a quick 36 minutes, in fact maybe only 33 minutes of stand-up once you ignore Chappelle’s intro (who while we’re here why didn’t he record his intro there at DC?) and the end credits, although Earthquake does a short set feels as full as any hour on Netflix.

And yeah, maybe it’s more than a little hack at this point for a comedy guy to be so dramatic in re-enacting a rectal exam. And yet, at least Earthquake doesn’t lean too heavily into the superficial stereotypical homophobic take that too many others do. Instead, he bends down, then salutes the homosexuals as if they were brave soldiers. He may be naturally outrageous, but he’s also playful and determined.

So the name Earthquake still fits.

Our call: SPREAD IT. It’s unclear if the rest of “Chappelle’s Home Team” will be as strong as that first episode, but you don’t have to worry about it to enjoy Earthquake. If this is your first time experiencing his comedy, then Chappelle’s deal is already a winner.

Sean L. McCarthy Works Comedy Rhythm For His Own Digital Journal, The comic strip; before that, for the actual logs. Based in New York, but will travel anywhere for the scoop: ice cream or news. He also tweets @thecomicscomic and half-hour episode podcasts with comedians revealing origin stories: Comic Book Comic Presents Last Things First.


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