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For fans of stand-up comedy, few careers have been more frustrating (though equally rewarding) than Dave Chappelle’s. But things have gotten a lot better as the years after his post-Chappelle Show self-exile have gone by, and we may be extremely close to his next stand-up special. If unofficial reports are to be believed, he spent this past Easter weekend recording a brand new full-length special, and HBO is quite possibly the place where it will one day air.
Chappelle returned to a relatively steady stand-up comedy schedule a couple of years ago, and he spent the weekend performing six shows (two a night) as part of Austin City Limits Live. According to Comedy Hype, Chappelle was recording these sets as his next comedy special, and their sources have told them it’ll be for HBO, although there’s no title set in stone just yet, and nor is there a date on when we can hope to see it. I’m pinching myself with a grain of salt to see if it’s all a Half Baked-inspired weed dream.
And while random tweets aren’t exactly the best way to make guarantees of something, there’s this.
Hell, even if this doesn’t go to HBO and only gets released as a comedy album, I would be beyond overwhelmed with it. But who am I kidding? A network is definitely going to pick this up, and whichever one does will almost certainly bring in massive ratings when it airs. I’m actually quite surprised that Netflix hasn’t started up a bidding war to acquire this special, assuming it’s real. They’ve been growing their comedy lineup for the past couple of years, and Chappelle would arguably be the biggest special they could have gone after. Not that I’m complaining, as HBO has been a friend to stand-up comedy for decades.
Following 2000’s HBO special Dave Chappelle: Killin’ Them Softly, Chappelle’s last TV gig was 2005’s Dave Chappelle: For What It’s Worth, which aired on Showtime. Check out a classic clip from that show below.
From what has gone public in the past two years, it’s clear that Dave Chappelle hasn’t lost his comedic step, even if he’s a different person now from when he was at the height of his fame. At this point, I’d watch him reading off how-to guides for home improvement projects, so a new comedy special sounds almost too good to be true.