Last night at his late night show at the Trocadero, comedian Hannibal Buress did an extended bit about Philadelphia native Bill Cosby, calling him a rapist. Cosby has been accused of drugging and sexually assaulting multiple women, including Barbara Bowman in Philadelphia magazine. He has not, however, ever been criminally charged with rape (the legal definition of which varies by jurisdiction).* The above recording starts about 15-20 seconds into it.
“It’s even worse because Bill Cosby has the fuckin’ smuggest old black man persona that I hate,” Buress said. “He gets on TV, ‘Pull your pants up black people, I was on TV in the 80s! I can talk down to you because I had a successful sitcom!’ Yeah, but you rape women, Bill Cosby, so turn the crazy down a couple notches.”
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Friday night, Aziz Ansari’s “Aziz Ansari Live” tour made a stop at the Wells Fargo Center. And after opener Hannibal Buress warmed up the crowd with more than a couple quips on Philly (yeah we know, man, South Philly parks in the middle of Broad Street, don’t worry about it) the Comedy Bad Boy (aka Comedy Heartthrob) was geared up to take on his LED-drenched stage.
Ansari’s most recent special, “Buried Alive”—shot in town last year at the Kimmel’s Merriam Theater—marked a pivotal moment in the comedian’s voice.
His once scattered, hyperactive observational comedy gave way to a more reflective approach, exploring the anxieties felt toward a looming adulthood—anxieties shared by pretty much any and everyone on the back end of their 20s.
“This new special, I hope, goes even deeper,” Ansari said in a Ticket interview last Wednesday. “I hit topics I never would have had the skill to handle a few years ago.”
Where “Buried Alive” dealt with the acknowledgement of, and subsequent distress that accompanies accepting one’s adult life, “Aziz Ansari Live” explores the concepts with a higher sense of criticism, focus and confidence.
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One of my favorite Chelsea Lately roundtable regulars, Fortune Feimster, is performing this Thursday through Saturday at Philly’s Helium Comedy Club. The out lesbian took some time to chat with me on the phone before flying in this week. We gabbed about what it’s like being a lesbian in the comedy game, working with Tina Fey on the recently (and unfortunately) canned Cabot College, and she even weighs in on the recent attacks that happened in Center City, sharing what she does to stay positive when life gets a little too heavy.
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Comedian and actor Aziz Ansari returns to Philadelphia this week after filming his last special, “Buried Alive,” at the Kimmel’s Merriam Theater in 2013. This time he’s moving to a much bigger venue, the Wells Fargo Center, on Friday, September 26th. We caught up with him this week via an email chat to see what to expect from this latest go round, titled simply Aziz Ansari: Live!
Photo by Lucas Michael
A couple years back, you added a few extra shows to the last leg of your tour—one of which was here in Philly, where you ended up filming your most recent special, “Buried Alive.” Anything particular about this city that drew you back, or was the Kimmel Center just really, really telegenic?
The first shows I did there were really fun. I loved the crowd, and the Kimmel Center is a really beautiful theater. As soon I as saw it, I knew it was a contender for a place to film a special. I knew if we could come back and do it again and film it, I’d be happy with the special. And I was.
Given your penchant for experiencing the hometown cuisine of every city you hit, where are you excited to eat once you cross to our side of the Ben Franklin Bridge?
I honestly don’t want to say the places, because what if the Aziz murderer is reading this?!
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Philly’s own Kevin Hart will fill in for Len Goodman as guest judge on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars next Monday, September 29th. Next week’s episode is “Movie Night,” and Hart will help Carrie Ann Inaba, Julianne Hough, and Bruno Tonioli judge the final 11 celebrity contestants and their partners as they celebrate songs from the silver screen.
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In a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Outkast’s André 3000 chats about playing Jimi Hendrix in the upcoming Jimi: All is By My Side. During the course of the conversation he teases an Outkast biopic, and how he’d like a certain Philly comedian to play his sidekick Big Boi.
Rapper André Benjamin worked obsessively on his startling portrayal of Jimi Hendrix in the new film Jimi: All Is By My Side, and he already has ideas about a potential biopic for his group Outkast. “It would be great to make an Outkast movie right now, but instead of really serious, make it a full comedy — like Kevin Hart would play Big Boi,” he said of his rapping partner last night. And as himself? “We should cast somebody stupid — like Leonardo [DiCaprio].”
Lorde performs at the Mann Center on September 5th.
Maybe you’ll see Cecily Tynan there, singing along to “Royals.” The 17-year-old Kiwi is one of her personal faves. Mann Center, September 5th.
Zachary Chiero and Peter Andrew Danzig are gay Mummers in Tribe of Fools’ “Two Street,” part of the FringeArts Festival.
Every year, we wonder if the event previously known as the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival & Philly Fringe is going to lose its mojo. But based on this year’s lineup, which includes everything from an interactive public art installation floating on the Delaware River (WetLand) to Two Street, a gay version of Romeo and Juliet as told through the lens of South Philadelphia and the Mummers to one of the most unusual walking tours you’ll ever join (Experiment #39) and a few dozen other shows, and the fact that the FringeArts venue is now fully open, complete with brasserie, outdoor performance plaza and 240-seat theater, it seems the mojo is stronger than ever. Various locations, September 5th to 21st.
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