The Word: Dave Chappelle goes on strike at standup show

HOLLYWOOD, FL - JULY 23: Dave Chappelle performs at Zo Summer Groove Benefit Dinner and Gala  at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel on July 23, 2011 in Hollywood, Florida. (Photo by Larry Marano/WireImage)
Dave Chappelle doesn’t take kindly to heckling. Credit: Larry Marano/WireImage

The relationship between Dave Chappelle and his audience has to be one of the most tragic things that’s ever happened in the comedy world (aside from all the drugs and suicide of course).

Chappelle hates being heckled so much that it makes him shut down cold, sometimes for years. Most of his fans would gladly comply with any noise level he wanted, but knowing they have that sort of power over a famous person is pretty much a heckler’s dream come true. At this point, the chances of a Chappelle standup gig where no one yells things at him are basically nil.

That’s what happened last night, apparently. Chappelle, who’s headlining the Funny Or Die Oddball Festival, had a show at a club in Hartford, Conn. When the audience wouldn’t stop yelling at him, he sat down, read a book and made a little idle chatter until his time was up 25 minutes later, according to the Laugh Button.

You can see a little of his “performance” below. It’s still pretty interesting because Dave’s a smart guy, but comedy it ain’t. How incredibly frustrating, especially for the people who paid $50 to see him. I wish there was some way people could fulfill his requirements of what a comedy audience should be like, but every audience pretty much has at least one jerk, so that will probably never happen.


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