When we previewed the comedy show at Zo's Summer Grove for the calendar three weeks ago, the headliner was slated to be D.L. Hughley. On Friday, however, we learned that none other than comedy god Dave Chappelle had joined the line-up. His glory days in Half Baked and the Chappelle Show were so good, they outshine the past five years of weirdness that began after the comedian dipped out of the mainstream after a trip to South Africa.
But when he hit Hard Rock on Friday night, his funny days seem like lifetimes ago. He reportedly spent 46 minutes flailing on stage to an outraged audience. He must be a fan of the "I Pretend to Text in Awkward Situations" on Facebook, because he spent a lot time looking at his phone. Video below.
Chappelle was miffed that members of the audience were taping his show, so it seems his bad performance was a bit of a protest. The comic has had a complicated relationship with being in the public eye. About his sudden departure to Africa, he told James Lipton on Inside the Actor's Studio: "The hardest thing to do is to be true to yourself, especially when everybody is watching."
CNN anchor Roland Martin, who was in the audience, tweeted:
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Chappelle says this is a "test of wills." He keeps saying "tick tock" & he has "nothing but time." He's just staring at the crowd & sighing
When he took the stage the following night at the gala, he apologized for his bad attitude during a short 10-minute set. It appears living on a 65-acre farm in Ohio hasn't pacified the comic any. But we hope that means there's still a performer in there with enough swagger to get back to shouting "I'm Rick James, bitch!"