Our Verdict: Chris Rock

Reviewed on 26 Jan 2018
  • Event review

    It has been 9 years since one of this decade’s top comedians Chris Rock lasted toured the UK. The Total Blackout tour has been hailed as his most self-reflecting and personal stand up to date.


    Chris is well established amongst the greatest comedians to ever do it having performed a number of HBO stand up shows ‘Bring the Pain’ and ‘Bigger and Blacker’, starred in a number of Hollywood movies ‘Madagascar, ‘Grown Ups’ and ‘The Longest Yard’, produced a hit Television series ‘Everybody hates Chris’ and hosted the Oscars twice.

    The show opens with none other than the "roast master" himself Jeff Ross which was a pleasant surprise. During part of his set Jeff brings up members of the audience for a quick comedic obliteration which sent a thunderous roar of laughter throughout the arena. One of the audience members must not of realised what she was in for and after heading up on the stage had a change of heart and bolted - and I don't blame her!

    Support acts Michelle Wolfs and the brilliant Anthony Jeselnik, known for his dark comedy style, delivered some audience splitting jokes, which is a sign of a very good comedian...and a very good crowd! Jeselnik joked about his fear of babies, in particular, holding them; “When people ask me to hold their baby I never lie. I say yes I will hold your baby, for a while”.

    “COMFORT IS THE POISON” beamed in bright red colours behind Chris as he entered the stage which set the tone for the evening.

    Rock open the show with the opening statement “I’m in Birmingham in the winter, in the winter so you know I’m broke” during the set he also had a few digs at some local areas...sorry Handsworth, he singled you out”, “Is this where they shot the wire” don't worry, we know you're lovely really.

    In typically Chris fashion he later went on to address very serious issues, but in the funniest of ways including the breakdown of his marriage, race, religion, American politics and gun crime. Obviously not the most cheery of subjects on paper, but Chris has the amazing talent to twist some challenging topics and have you bawling with laughter.

    Reflecting on his own marriage breakdown Rock repeatedly states that you don’t want to get divorced. “If you have somebody to love, hold tight.” which was actually quite sweet! However, he is very self-aware about his marriage breakdown and the reasons why things went wrong, but one thing he ALWAYS makes sure is that a few celebs are over at his house when the kids are round.  That they'll go home and just name drop galore to their Mother. Not a move I agree with, but who can argue with Chris Rock? Not me! 

    Verdict

    A great show from start to finish, support acts were brilliant and Rock demonstrating once again why he is considered one of the greats.


    Reviewed by   Solomon Smith