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13 Jun 2017

Live: Chris Rock at Fantasy Springs, June 9

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Chris Rock. Chris Rock.

On Friday night, June 9, Chris Rock’s “Total Blackout Tour” made a sold-out stop at Fantasy Springs—and his no-holds-barred, raunchy humor on various subjects was a hit.

First, one important detail: The tour is called the “Total Blackout Tour” for a reason—and that blackout includes cell phones. The line to get into the Fantasy Springs Special Events Center on Friday night was lengthy, and attendees were told they had two options: They could take their cell phones back to their cars, or they could put them in a bag that would be locked until the end of the show. (At one point before the show started, I saw a couple who had broken through the bag provided for their cell phones—and they were being dealt with by law enforcement.)

When Rock took the stage, he said, “Where the hell am I?” asking if he was in Palm Springs. He expressed disbelief that people actually lived in the Coachella Valley, based on how hot it was—and then quickly declared in the same breath that he was tired of hearing about Donald Trump every day. After that awkward non-transition, Rock went on to say that Donald Trump’s actions every day are stupid, and that these actions have made him tired of hearing about political matters.

There were two times early in the show when in the middle of his jokes, he asked, “What’s up with this microphone, man?” after his wireless microphones apparently cut out on him. It then happened a third time; when he showed frustration and asked what was going on, stage management pointed to a microphone on a cord in front of the monitors. He picked it up, stated that the Fantasy Springs Special Events Center must have been built “this past Wednesday,” and added, “We’re definitely not in Vegas.”

Chris Rock is known for his political commentary, and discussing what goes on in our society in both a funny and serious manner. In fact, he’s one of the best at doing so. After mentioning the shootings of young African-American men by police, he said that the cops should include some white teenagers, stating, “We want justice for Brad! No justice, no quiche!” (During that rant, I noticed an older white couple in a section close by who walked out disgusted, after only about 20 minutes of the show. Who in the world did they think they were going to see?)

There have been some major changes to Rock’s personal life recently. He stated rather seriously that one of those changes included a divorce from his ex-wife, to whom he was married for 16 years. He admitted in a serious manner: “I cheated with three women,” which quickly turned into a joke, given he’s been asked, “Why only three?” He talked about the woes of his divorce proceedings, and that his wife was out to get his “New Jack City and I’m Gonna Git You Sucka” money. However, he added that his divorce proceedings were much better than those between rapper Tone Loc and his ex-wife, who would argue over “who gets ‘Funky Cold Medina’ and ‘Wild Thing.’”

The show’s funniest part came when Rock explained how a marriage works—based on “fucking and playing the tambourine.” He stated that being in a relationship is like being in a band, and there are days when you are the front man, and days when you’re playing the tambourine. He also talked about how a man might think he owns his house, but if a man wanted to test this idea, that man should test it by “put(ting) up a picture of your mother in the house.”

Rock is known for his hilarious successful HBO comedy specials, starring roles in various films, and a sitcom based on his childhood; he even hosted the Oscars last year. It’s obvious based on the laughs he generated during the show: Rock remains one of the funniest stars of stand-up comedy.

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