AP writer Dave Collins has a solid recap of last night’s Funny or Die debacle at the Comcast Theatre in Hartford. The city was the latest stop for the website’s Oddball Comedy & Curiosity Festival tour, and we do mean stop.
Headliner Dave Chappelle chose to throw away a sizable portion of his allotted time, possibly in reaction to being heckled. Or it may just have been because he didn’t really feel like performing last night.
Among those in the audience was Massachusetts state representative Matthew Lesser:
“He basically stopped his routine and refused to go on and said he was contracted for 25 minutes and said he was just going to sit there,” Lesser said. “He was berating the audience and telling them they were a lousy audience. I think it was kind of sad and disappointing.”
It’s never dull when Chappelle is involved. In the footage below, the comedian talks about opening for Richard Pryor at age 19 and the sameness of all “drug movies” before going off on the audience. He at one point yells “F*ck you” to a heckler, but the ultimate insult can be heard a few moments later in the video below when another audience member plaintively yells out for Wayne Brady.
Update (September 4):
During the September 3 tour stop in Chicago, Chappele indicated it was indeed the heckling problem that prompted him to bail on Hartford. He described the audience as a bunch of “young, white alcoholics” and said in a perfect world, he would have gone crazy on them a la Michael Richards.