Customer Reviews: Chappelle's Show - Season 1 Uncensored
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I had caught snippets of Chappelle's Show here and there before, but I had never made a point of actually sitting down and watching a complete episode. Then a friend of mine told me about a hilarious skit featuring Dave Chappelle as a black white supremacist (he is blind and doesn't know he is actually a black man); if it was only half as funny as she said it was, I knew I had to see it for myself, so I soon bought myself a copy of Chappelle's Show Season One. Not only is the skit in question hilarious, it basically defines the type of humor Dave Chappelle brings to the comedy scene. I don't think the television viewing audience has ever seen anything like this before - certainly not to the extremes that Dave Chappelle takes it. When he jokes about the fact the show has not been cancelled yet, it actually rings with a bit of truth. Very few comedians could get away with this type of over-the-top humor.

To say that this is mature humor is something of an understatement. Adult language abounds, and all the bleeps you heard on television are now removed - thus, the Uncensored! tagline. You'll find a lot of jokes centered on human anatomy - especially female anatomy. Far beyond everything else, though, is a relentless comedic skewering of racism. Some would probably consider this a racist show, actually - the "n word" is used in abundance, and stereotypes of blacks, Asians, whites, and other races are exploited shamelessly. The whole point of the race-based comedy, though, is to show just how extreme and ridiculous racist thinking and behavior really is. Some people won't "get it," of course, and they will probably think Chappelle's Show is one of the most offensive things they have ever witnessed - and that's OK. The majority of viewers, I believe, will "get it" and will join me in an extended laugh-fest that lasts throughout all twelve episodes of Season One as well as the bonus materials included in this DVD offering.

Among the gut-bustingly funny stuff you will find in Chappelle's Show Season One are the antics of crack addict Tyrone Biggums (including a visit to a drug awareness day at an elementary school), Chappelle-ized scenes from hit films such as Roots and The Matrix, a news report detailing the profound aftereffects brought about by the paying of reparations for slavery, "Great Moments in Hookup History," a "Real World" episode featuring one really white guy living with five crazy African-Americans, a hard-hitting documentary detailing the racism of famous animal performers, a documentary covering great inner city gang wars of the 1980s, an interracial episode of Trading Spouses, numerous Chappelle-ized television ads, Ask a Black Dude features with comedian Paul Mooney, a hilarious look at the international Player Hater Ball, and of course a lot of crude jokes about drugs and bodily functions. The only bad thing about these episodes is the fact that they are sometimes rather short. Chappelle featured rap and hip-hop musical guests on each show, but those segments are not included on nine of the twelve episodes you get here (and it's only a half-hour show to begin with).

The comedy is a little uneven at times. A few skits never really catch fire and are thus forgettable, but the vast majority of the material here will have you rolling in the aisles. Even the kind of toilet humor that normally isn't that funny will have you in stitches because Chappelle just keeps going to the well so many times that he makes it funny despite itself.

Five of the episodes come with audio commentary by Dave Chappelle and the show's co-creator Neal Brennan (who is white, by the way), as does the extra 29-minute feature of bloopers and deleted scenes. I was actually a little disappointed by the audio commentary; it was informational but not as funny as I had expected. The bloopers and deleted scenes were also less than hilarious - but I realized long ago (thanks to Dick Clarke and Ed McMahon) that bloopers really aren't very funny much of the time. All these extras are just icing on the cake, though, as the twelve episodes of the show more than make this Season One collection worth the money. Heck, it's worth it for just the blind, black white supremacist feature by itself.
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on February 5, 2004
Dave Chappelle is, undoubtedly, one of the most daring and intelligent comedians working today. At first glance (or listen), his humor may seem offensive or like little more than toilet humor, but if you dig a little deeper you'll realize that Dave is simply saying the things so many Americans would LOVE to say, but can't.
Chappelle's Show is one of my favorite shows on television. Dave's sense of humor breaks the color boundries and he's not afraid to attack anyone for a laugh. Whites, blacks, Asian...whoever you are, you're a target, and that's the beauty of it. By not singling out anyone, Dave has made a show accessible enough for EVERYONE. Sure, it's controversial and yes, it can be vulgar, but it's also hilarious and only the most uptight of people who take everything at face value could possibly be offended by it.
Dave tackles everything from racism to R. Kelly in the first season and it's some of the most refreshing, intelligent television humor I've seen in years. His ability to look inward and poke fun at himself, as well as everyone else, only makes it funnier. Nothing in the show should be taken too seriously. From it's over-exaggerated racial stereotypes to it's parodies, everything is done with a great deal of humor and, most importantly, intellect.
Chappelle's Show is a brilliant piece of television and kudos should be given to Comedy Central for bringing it out on DVD and, most importantly, giving Dave enough creative control over his show to say and do the things he does and keeping it on the air.
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on March 11, 2004
First things first: this DVD is hilarious and has hours and hours of great comedy that won't diminish after one viewing.
Now to break it down further:
Some of the skits on here are downright brilliant and funny (e.g., the reparations skit, the black white supremacist skit, the Real World, the rapper Fisticuffs), some are potty-humor funny (Redman's toilet bowl cleaner? no one else could have done that skit but Redman), and only a few are lackluster (Blackzilla, any of the Great Moments in Hook-Up History). But there's so many of the first two categories, you'll forget about the misses.
There's twelve episodes on two DVDs with deleted scenes and some unaired "Ask a Black Dude" with Paul Mooney material. The deleted scenes are freaking HILARIOUS. The Antwone Fisher bit is always funny to me no matter how many times I see it.
Additionally, there is audio commentary on five episodes by Chapelle and his writing partner, Neal Brennan. This one of the few DVDs where the audio commentary is actually worthwhile. They explain how they came up with the ideas for skits, which skits offended the most people, explain jokes that are unclear, etc.
Therefore, this is a worthwhile DVD to get. I must say here that, judging from this DVD, some may be overrating the content here as this sort of real edgy, in-your-face, social commentary. Yeah, that's here - and when it shows up, it's clever, funny, and thought-provoking. But alot of the content is baser in nature. I just hope we get more of the smarter, dark, and edgy stuff in the future.
Two small complaints - I heard that some of the musical performances were removed. Not good. (By the way they did include Mos Def absolutely ripping it in Chapelle's car.) Another thing, they need to include better descriptions on what is in each episode. Sometimes you just want to see a particular skit and it takes a while to figure out which episode it came from.
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on February 28, 2004
With the amount of wannabe comics that are out there today, it is hard to find the geniune article. Well let me tell you. Dave Chappelle is without a doubt the funniest man alive today. The Chapelle Show is filled with controversial, outrageous, and overall hilarious skits that are guaranteed to have you laughing until your stomach hurts. Even the most up tight and liberal minded people will enjoy this show. The show manages to poke fun at racism and all the stereotypes of today very effectively. You will see everything from Chappelle playing a black white supremacist, to a skit done on black people receiving slave reperations and the effect that it has on the economy. Seeing this show on DVD is the only way to go, because it is completely uncensored. Nothing kills the mood more, than an annoying beep from the censors that you would see on Comedy Central. Now you get to see the show uncut and in its entirety without commercial interruption. If there was ever a reason to own a DVD, it is the Chapelle Show!!
A solid 5 stars....
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on January 20, 2004
Finally the season worth taping is out on DVD. What a great collection of Tyrone the Crackhead and a full digital version of his R Kelly spoof. Great stuff.
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on January 21, 2004
Dave Chapelle is the funniest man alive and I can't wait until the 2nd season! Funniest show ever wit the best skits. Especially like tyrone the crackhead and the vice city skit. PZ!
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on April 9, 2004
That's right, I said it. Chappelle's Show is edgier, more original and overall funnier than Saturday Night Live; the granddaddy of sketch comedy shows, has ever been on it's best day. While Saturday Night Live has constantly thrown us new cast members in a hit or miss fashion (more often miss), Chappelle's Show focuses on the star whose name appears in the title so you know right away if you will appreciate Dave's sense of humor. Between Dave Chappelle's already brazen sense of humor and his show being aired on cable, the door has been left wide open for anything goes material and being as though this set is uncensored, it becomes even more evident that this show will not appeal to someone with some social justice axe to grind. Dave Chappelle goes for the jugular on anyone who is within target range. Nobody is spared.
Each episode has it's high and low points but no matter how low the show might appear, another skit is right around the corner to pull the show above the competition. Some of my favorite sketches feature Dave as a blind black white supremacist or as a crotchity white news anchorman reporting on Reparations 2003. The show fires on all cyclinders when it tackles some issues that even the most self-appointed un-PC comics wouldn't touch with a 100 foot pole and Dave Chappelle looks at subject matter of that ilk with a sick, (...) grin and dives in headfirst with no qualms about who he might offend. For the sensitive type, Chappelle's Show is amatuerish, immature and brash. To those of us who realize that humanity is hopeless, Chappelle's Show delivers the laughs in droves.
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on March 12, 2004
When I heard the commercials for the Dave Chappelle Show Season 1 DVD's on TV, I didn't hear it described as the complete first season minus "some musical performances."
So imagine my surprise, when I picked up the DVD set off the rack; looked at its back cover (I'm sure some people weren't so lucky); and winced while reading in small footnoted print, "* Some musical performances featured in the original broadcast are not included on the DVD set."
Still...for me the key word--key to going ahead and buying the set--was "some." The average, reasonable person would not conclude that "some" means the same as "most". Most reasonable would probably think "some" means less than a majority.
Obviously the people who put this set together are either ignorant of the accepted definition of "some" or they purposely understated the degree of missing performances in order to boost sales. I am very displeased that their idea of "some" is 7 out 11 performances. That's fairly close to three-quarters missing.
Here's a run-down of the performances in the original broadcasts as well a paranthetic indication of whether they appear on the DVD set.
S01 E01 No Musical Guest
S01 E02 Mos Def (Yes)
S01 E03 Talib Kweli (No)
S01 E04 Busta' Rhymes (No)
S01 E05 Fat Joe (No)
S01 E06 David Broom (Yes)
S01 E07 Killer Mic (No)
S01 E08 Sun Village (No)
S01 E09 Roots (No)
S01 E10 Gza (No)
S01 E11 De La Soul (Yes)
S01 E12 Blackstar (Yes)
Buyer beware, is all.
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on May 11, 2004
I don't think anyone is going to be reading this review who doesn't know what to expect from the Chappelle Show: Hip, edgy, and above all funny. I bought the DVD (and man did I have to hunt through a lot of stores to find one) mostly because I had started watcing season 2, and wanted see what I had missed during the first season.
Let me say it plainly, the first season is AWESOME. I own a lot of TV DVD collections, and within twenty minutes of popping this one in the DVD player my roommates all agreed that this was our new favorite DVD. It's one of those DVDs that is so funny that you have to stop watching it at some point, because you're so worn out from laughing.
Just to remind some of you who are on the fence about buying it, this season has;
1) The Player Haters Ball
2) The Black KKK Leader
3) The MAD Real World
4) Trading Spouses
5) What if Blacks Actually Got Reperations
6) and of course, Tyrone the Pipe-head giving an anti-drug lesson to first graders.
Get this DVD, you'll love it
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Possibly the best show to premiere on Comedy Central since South Park, gifted comedian Dave Chappelle's half hour comedy show is a work of near comic brilliance. The first episode, even though it may start out a bit shakey, ends hysterically as Dave introduces us to Clayton Bigsby; a blind, black, white supremicist. Dave also spoofs comercials, various TV shows, and celebrities in general, while delivering hilarious sketches such as "The Mad Real World" in which a token white guy is trapped in a house with a group of the craziest black people on the planet, a music video spoofing R. Kelly's private life, and an autobiographical movie in the spirit of Antwone Fisher where Dave can't help but lie. Season 1 of Chapelle's Show borderlines on juvenile (and in some cases it goes over) but it is undeniably hilarious; the only downside of this DVD set is that Paramount hardly included any extras. It's still at a good price though, and is more than worth buying if you're a fan of the show.
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