Kevin Hart: Seriously Funny

RIYL: “Def Comedy Jam”, Mo’Nique, “Soul Plane”

If you’re a fan of stand-up comedy, you’d probably be right not to expect comedic gold from someone who starred in “Soul Plane” alongside Snoop Dogg and Tom Arnold. However, low expectations can actually be beneficial, and Hart’s latest CD, Seriously Funny, manages to be reasonably funny – certainly funnier than any sober viewing of “Soul Plane” or just about anything else in the diminutive comic’s film catalog.

Over the course of an hour-long show taped at the Allen theater in Cleveland (aired as a special on Comedy Central and also available on DVD), Hart spins fairly standard but still moderately amusing yarns about married life (the sex gets boring), having children (parenting is hard), relationships and coming to terms with his own lack of toughness. The biggest laughs come from a bit in which he watches his father get beaten up and an extended sequence in which he explains how to storm out of a domestic argument correctly. His style of comedy isn’t especially original – stand-ups have been mining these topics since the dawn of creation, but Hart strikes a decent balance between the familiar and the slightly racy. His jokes are mildly profane on occasion, but won’t cause jaws to drop like much of the stand-up work of legends ranging from George Carlin to Eddie Murphy or even new jacks like Aziz Ansari. If you’ve watched a couple episodes of “Def Comedy Jam,” it’s very likely that you’ve heard some permutation of these jokes before.

The issue with comedy albums is always the fact that some of the jokes are inevitably visual, and thus fall flat in recorded audio form. That’s occasionally the case here. However, despite the hindrance of not actually being able to see Hart, it’s a credit to him that a good chunk of his jokes still fly. Seriously Funny doesn’t totally live up to its title, but it’s good enough that we can easily picture him starring in a family sitcom a la D.L. Hughley or Damon Wayans someday. (Comedy Central 2010)

Kevin Hart MySpace page


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