“It’s been a long time, so please be patient,” were among Dave Chappelle’s first lines as he graced the spotlight to cheers and anticipated laughter during his debut on Saturday Night Live.
Nearly four minutes into his opening monologue, Chappelle had already dropped the N-word in full form, took a dig at America for electing an “Internet troll as president,” and directed attention toward the countless senseless shootings over the last year. Before the 11 minute bit was up, we already knew that this night would deliver the raw, social and politically aware Chappelle that we’ve all missed.
SNL was Black AF. Political AF. And took the Fifth Amendment for all it was worth. From digs on presidential elect, Donald Trump to White culture’s obscurity to the seriousness of racism or the fact that it even exists, skit-by-skit America was slapped in the face with its own BS. And every bit of it was right on time, culturally appreciated and oh-so-needed.
In seven skits, Chappelle managed to bring the world together after a stressful week and he did it with his friends Chris Rock and A Tribe Called Quest in tow. Such a beautiful thing.
When Rock stepped into frame during the first bit, “Election Day,” and dapped it up with Chappelle, I literally screamed. Maybe, I was having a soft moment, but seeing these brothers sharing the same space delivering their brand of “woke” comedy on a mainstream stage in THIS emotionally charged climate, yeah… it damn near brought tears to my eyes.
America laughed together, Saturday night. Long-time Chappelle fans got not only one of the infamous characters created during his Comedy Central tenure, but in The Walking Dead – style, we were reunited with Tyrone Biggums, Clayton Bigsby, Chuck Taylor, Lil’ Jon, and Silky. This has the Interwebs looking at TWD character, Negan totally different.
These are the reasons, a voice like Chappelle’s is needed even more in the current political climate. Sure, we’ll kick back and laugh. But when you take in his commentary, parodies, and satirical scenes, comedically, Chappelle is intelligently zooming in.
For one night, we received The Chappelle Show and loved every skit of it!
— Saturday Night Live (@nbcsnl) November 13, 2016
If this is indeed a comeback, you’re welcomed with open arms and a world full of anticipated laughter from your genius mind. All jokes no gimmicks – just how we like it.
LaToya “Toi” Cross is the Senior Editor/ Entertainment and Culture for EBONY, EBONY.com and JETMag.com. You can catch this laughing creative sharing work, art and capturing life via her iPhone 6 via her handle of @ToizStory on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.