Chris Rock, Bring The Pain (1996)
Oh man, this special. One of the best sets ever. Watched it with my wife last night, and we were laughing at this bit (which I tweeted out of context, and probably lost 50 followers):
"You gotta think about life in the long term. Now, people tell you life is short. No it’s not. Life is loooong. Especially if you make the wrong decisions! And in the long term, if I’m sick, is new pussy going to take care of me? No. If I’m hungry, is new pussy going to feed me? New pussy can’t cook!"
What’s really interesting is that this special was actually a comeback for Chris Rock. His career was on the downswing by 1994—he had quit Saturday Night Live in 1993 to go to In Living Color, which was cancelled in 1994. From a 2001 interview:
I was a has-been. So I figured if I’m not going to be famous, I can at least get really good, and get back to being the way I was before I met Eddie Murphy and saw the big houses and the girls.”
He went back to clubs for two years and honed his material, then taped this show at the Takoma Theatre in Washington, D.C.
One other interesting thing about the special: as he’s walking towards the stage, his favorite comedy albums are flashed on screen. As if he’s saying, “this is what I’m aiming for…”
A lot of the material was used for his CD, Roll With The New, which is where I first heard it when I was really young. But you have to see it on stage.
(Chris Rock is probably going to dominate my watching year 2011 list: I loved his documentary Good Hair, too.)