“If I’m a cop, and I’m a brotha, and they let me have a taser? Sorry bro, I’m tasing you.” – Larry Wilmore
In case you don’t follow “The Daily Show”, Larry Wilmore is the comedian who was the shows “senior black correspondent”. He’s got a lot of writing credits on shows like “In Living Color”, “Fresh Prince” and “The Office” amongst others.
Now he’s taken over Stephen Colbert’s timeslot on Comedy Central.
I thought about writing this after the first show but had other things on my mind that I wanted to share. So, I watched the second show today and i’m glad I waited!
While the show and Larry are trying to find the right tone I feel like the show’s got promise. I love the fact that they devote so much time to one topic and that there’s a lot of focus on a discussion rather than just one voice. Larry will make an awesome leader for the panel once he’s gotten more comfortable in the role. After just two shows it’s already better than Bill Maher’s panel!
The criticism? The writing isn’t quite there yet and you can tell that the “set pieces” feel a little stilted. It was the same for Colbert early on I remember. Just give it time and it’ll come along! Personally i’m not really fond of Larry’s style of delivery. It might grow on me but I feel that he’s a LOT funnier when he ad-libs and reacts to things.
All in all there’s some potential and it’s nice to see that this show too has an identity of its own already. Especially with the “Keep It 100”. That’s where the panelists [and at the end Larry himself] are urged to keep their answer 100% real.
Come on, on the first show he asked comedian Bill Burr if he’d prefer that his child was black or white. His wife is black. He answered “white”. That’s just… Wow.
The second show was all about Bill Cosby. Larry’s impression was great and once again the panel discussion was too. The questions on “Keep It 100” were provoking again and I think this’ll be the shows equivalent to Colbert’s “The Word”.
Now, I hope this show keeps going for a long while. I can see that it has the potential to turn into something really great. They’ll probably experiment more with different segments in the future so we’ll probably see some experimenting in the near future. Some things will stick, others will fail. Horribly.
The main thing is that they keep trying. I hope they’ll take some real risks like Larry did during his time with “In Living Color”, which for its time was really edgy.
That’s probably the best lesson we can take away from this as creatives. That we need to make clear what we want to stand for and at the same time try out new stuff that might be out there. We will fail from time to time but then we’ll be free to try the next thing.