Dave Chapelle is the king. Not of comedy but of Black people in entertainment. I still believe his decision to walk away from Comedy Central is the bravest move executed by anyone of our generation. Good to see Dave back.
In 2005, Dave Chappelle was merely the hottest comedian in America. Then he left his job and became a far more singular cultural figure: A renegade to some, a lunatic to others, but most of all, an enigma.
Now he is making a kind of comeback — Mr. Chappelle headlines the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival, a new 15-city tour produced by the Funny or Die Web site that begins Friday in Austin, Tex. — and what makes it particularly exciting is how he’s using his hard-earned mystique to make more daring and personal art.
Mr. Chappelle didn’t just walk away from a $50 million contract and the acclaimed “Chappelle’s Show,” whose second season on Comedy Central stacks up well against the finest years of “SCTV,” “Saturday Night Live” and Monty Python. He did so dramatically, fleeing to Africa and explaining his exit in moral terms: “I want to make sure I’m dancing and not shuffling,” he told Time magazine. Since then, he has been a remote star in an era when comedians have never been more accessible.