I spent my Friday night ‘putting a black kid through school’ and Chris Rock thanked me for it. What did you do over the weekend?
2017 is the year that Chris Rock dives back into the world of stand-up comedy and don’t you ever forget it. Kicking off his Total Black Out Australian Tour in Perth, Mr. Rock completely satisfied the fans by delivering fresh new content with his classic Chris Rock touch. As a long-running fan of his, it was an absolute dream come true to have had Chris grace us with his presence; here down-under. However, this show wasn’t just for the fans as the American comedian made certain to openly admit that his tour was to gain back some profit after his difficult divorce from his now ex-wife – Malaak Compton Rock – who he had been with for sixteen years. Raw honesty and comedy is this Grammy Award winning comedian’s specialty and truthfully, Chris Rock’s honest and vocal content is not for everybody.
As one would expect from such an accomplished star, Chris Rock selected class A comedians, James Smith and Jordan to open his show for him. Although their jokes were simple, both of them managed evoke immense laughter from all 8,000 of us in the crowd. The ink on my ticket to the show has been incredibly smudged from the tears that had fallen during those first thirty minutes of pure laughter. Both comedians kept the crowd well-entertained in preparation for the main event; the man, himself, Chris Rock.
Whilst many tend to steer clear away from politics and the topic of racism, to avoid any sort of conflict due to the controversial nature of such subjects. Chris is definitely not afraid to take it all on and voice out the majorities’ thoughts on such matters. We all think it but try just way too hard to remain partial while seeming politically correct. Chris Rock just honestly doesn’t give a fuck and he tackles the topic of racism head-on without holding back. Which was incredibly commendable. Of course, his recent performance in Perth was definitely no exception.
It’s safe to say that Chris Rock utilises the terms: ‘black’ and ‘white’ in an incredibly liberal fashion. Many of us, in the year of 2017 may immediately deem that as a form of ‘racism’ and we desperately try so goddamn hard to steer clear from being labeled as racist. In an attempt to seem absolutely politically correct, we end up relying on terms such as ‘caucasian’ or ‘person of colour’ to differentiate between the races. Of course, Chris Rock and his advocacy towards addressing this whole issue of racism is absolutely nothing new. We’re talking about the man who took the time to address topics which really mattered, during his speech at the Oscars. Chris confronted the issue of racism not once but twice as he grabbed the attention of everybody once again when he delivered his opening monologue for the 2016 Academy Awards.
Chris Rock made sure to address this all again as he highlighted the subliminal racism in America as well as Australia; in fact he openly stated that it was absolutely horrifying to see how Australia treated Australian Aborigines. He also had the crowds cheering as he inevitably touched on the topic of the current US President, none other than, Donald Trump and put out the thought that if George W. Bush was able to inspire the era of Barack Obama, just imagine the endless wonders that Donald Trump could spur on.
In my opinion, I do agree with most of Chris’ arguments and I think that it should be perfectly acceptable to refer to the different races as ‘white’, ‘black’ or even ‘yellow’. Stating the colour of one’s skin should not be considered as an act of racism. Judging someone, treating them differently and using someone’s skin colour against them is, because when is it ever logical to allow your behaviour and actions to be dictated by the colour of someone’s skin? Never.
That man speaks the truth no matter what anybody else thinks. And sure, he’s flawed but aren’t we all? That’s what makes him normal and so relatable. He’s just like the rest of us, just that he admits to his mistakes. He’s cheated and has made selfish acts of generosity (such as donating just so that he can appeal to Jesus’ kind heart.) – he’s just trying to find god before god finds him.
Chris Rock delved passed topics of racism and politics as he tackled the subjects of gun control, parenting and even bullying; stating that we do in fact need ‘bullies’ because there are assholes in the real world – i.e. Donald Trump. Chris openly agreed that bullying needs to occur in places such as schools in order to teach children how to handle the real world. Once again, his point of view can be seen as being rather controversial however I think we all need to take a page from Chris’ book because honestly, I completely agree with him. You physically cannot remove the act of bullying from happening in real life situations, hence since we are all going to encounter a bully at one stage or another, wouldn’t it be best if we were learning how to deal with it all in school? Where the toughest bully really boils down to little children?
As one would expect from a ‘Total Black Out Tour’ audience members were required to place their phones within Yondr pouches before entering the Perth Arena; ensuring that we weren’t able to have any access to it till the end of the show. That’s what I thoroughly appreciate about Chris Rock, he’s an old soul (despite his remarkable youthful appearance) who agrees that there’s a time and a place for the misuse of technology – and his show was certainly not one of them. It was amazing being able to commit completely undivided attention to Chris without subconsciously finding yourself watching the show, you had paid for, through someone else’s smartphone in front of you. Much like a standard black out, you tend to follow the sole source of light and there it was – a Chris who not only had us laughing and completely relating but one who allowed us to think about real matters, how we were going to acknowledge them and how we felt about them.
The first step to changing is acknowledging the issue at hand and accepting it as it is. Only then can we begin to change.