Patrice O’Neal is one of my teachers. Only a brilliant artist can finesse political incorrectness these days. He brought the stuff floating around in your head to light with an undeniable humor and intuition about the way the ugly truth really works in your brain. His comedy was a relief from the distasteful images burning holes in our brains amidst media pressure to think proper thoughts. Conversely, in his comedy, there was an implied sensitivity about the subjects that he ridiculed. It takes mad skills to be able to balance the two.
He didn’t play to the least common denominator, the way that a lot of comedians corralled on these “comedy” specials do. He talked about unpopular, marginal things, and you’d find yourself nodding involuntarily at them. Yes, some of his comedy made me cringe — but it was worth it. You can’t doubt his intelligence. I found him refreshing. I’d take him over any politically correct person using all the ‘proper’ lingo, etc., whose actions indicate otherwise. As a black comic, he didn’t use his comedy as an artless tool to lash out. I know his comedy wasn’t for everyone. Too bad.
I’ve heard of him, but I’m so woefully behind on my comedians that I’ve never seen his act. But I think comedians should push the boundaries. That’s there job, after all. To make us laugh at everything.
And I’m sure he offended quite a few people, to say the least. I read in that piece that I included that he made an insult comic cry — wow!
RIP Patrice. He was awesome.
You’re familiar with his work — yay! Damn shame he died so young.
I agree; RIP Patrice
It’s crazy he’s dead, and from diabetes in these times, no less…
He had a kind of honesty that I can barely imagine.
I’ve seen him but never seen him work. I’ll check him out one day.
Ohhh Shauna — he isn’t for everyone. Personally, I think his so called misogyny is misunderstood — in the context of the stage, he’s inviting you into the arena of his mind, where we might be able to identify with some of the unfiltered thoughts — what did I just say! — hahahaha!
Haha! Oh bwoy, now I know what you mean. So, he’s the male version of you.
You know that did cross my mind! But beyond that, I mean, I know he’s crude, etc., but I see his intelligence and awareness about the world around him — politics, etc. “The Elephant in the Room” was his latest dvd. But you could youtube him from earlier days. There were some on there that you could tell he was still rough around the edges with his style etc.