BILL VAUGHAN’S TASTY CLIPS: Loads of laughs on tap at Netflix Is a Joke Fest

By Bill Vaughan

Entertainment Writer

The annual Netflix Is a Joke Fest, billed as the largest comedy event in history, is in full swing this week with a variety of concerts, showcases and special events. 

May 3 brings BET+ star Ms. Pat & Friends to the Belasco Theater, Chris Redd to The Bourbon Room, Bill Burr to the Hollywood Bowl, Mo Gilligan to The Regent, Dulce Sloan to The Improv, Isiah Kelly to The Hotel Café, and the start of two nights of Chris Rock’s Table Reads at The Palladium, and Ali Wong Live at The Wiltern (also May 4, 5, 7, 8).  

May 4 has the full slate of Arsenio Hall & Howie Mandel with special guests at The Comedy Store, Roy Wood Jr. at the Belasco, Margaret Cho & Friends at Largo, Michael Yo at The Elysian, Darius Bennett at The Improv, “The Black Version” improv group at Dynasty Typewriter, and a late-night mystery line-up at The Comedy Store.  

The late afternoon of May 5 promises the family friendly Let There Be Laughs with Nephew Tommy, Lavell Crawford, and bandleader Fred Hammond at YouTube Theater; and “The Greatest Roast of All Time: Tom Brady” emceed by Kevin Hart and Jeff Ross at The Forum, which is said to be “Netflix’ first-ever live unedited and uncensored program.”

That evening has Princess featuring Maya Rudolph & Gretchen Liberum performing the music of Prince at The Palladium, Sibling Rivalry Live at The Belasco, Melissa Villasenor at Dynasty Typewriter, Sydnee Washington at the Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB) Theatre, “My Momma Told Me” with Langston Kerman & David Gborie at The Comedy Store, and Chocolate Sundaes at The Laugh Factory.  

The evening’s late shows include Chinedu Unaka & Friends late at UCB Theatre, and another mystery headliners show at The Comedy Store. 

Earthquake is at The Belasco on May 6, while Donnell Rawlings is at The Bourbon Room, Tip “T.I.” Harris & The HaHa Mafia are at Avalon Hollywood, Cipha Sounds & Friends are at the Laugh Factory, and Gabriel Iglesias hosts a late show at The Palladium. 

May 7 is a big night of comedy, music, fireworks and more as Seth Rogen Smokes the Bowl – Hilarity for Charity is being held at the Hollywood Bowl with special guests Snoop Dogg, Lil Dicky and Ramy Youssef

Meanwhile, Brian Simpson headlines The Comedy Store, Chloe Hilliard performs at The Improv, Rubee Tuesdays hosted by Ruben Paul is at Laugh Factory, and 85 South’s “Five On It” is at YouTube Theater. 

Want more? Taking the mic the next two days are the hilarious Mike Epps, Jay Pharoah, Kenice Mobley, Kid Fury, Craig Robinson, Kountry Wayne, Dane Cook, Michelle Buteau, Lil Rel Howery, Janelle James, Chris Spencer, The Lucas Brothers and many more. 

For a complete schedule, visit: netflixisajokefest.com. 

AT THE MOVIES: “Who Is Stan Smith?,” from LeBron James and Maverick Carter’s SpringHill Company, tells the story of the groundbreaking athlete who went from being one of the world’s greatest tennis stars, to a leading civil rights and AIDS activist, blazing a trail along the way with his namesake Adidas sneakers — the iconic shoe that has become a fashion statement for hip hop musicians and celebrities for more than 50 years.

The movie, opening May 3 at the Nuart Theater, shows how Smith’s relationship with Arthur Ashe heavily inspired his anti-racist activism, followed by his relationship with Black tennis player, Mark Mathabane, whom Smith helped escape from apartheid in South Africa. 

Emmy-winning filmmaker Danny Lee weaves extensive interviews with Smith, his family, and many of the world’s most famous athletes and celebrities including Pharrell Williams, Cari Champion, John McEnroe, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels and Donald Dell

YOU GOT BEEF?: Award winning Migos’ rapper Quavo’s secret becomes public this week with his partnership with Sovereign Sweets’ Kelan & Vinny Watson in opening Atlanta’s newest upscale experience, V12 Restaurant and Sports Bar. 

V12’s 7,500-square-foot venue features private rooms, a retractable roof, and the centerpiece of a makeshift Lamborghini — from a performance of “Lamb Talk” by Quavo on Jimmy Fallon’s “The Tonight Show.” 

TASTY QUIP: “Take your time and your talent and figure out what you have to contribute to this world and get over what the hell your butt looks like in those jeans!” – AMERICA FERRERA

CLIPPETTES: The three-day BeachLife Festival 2024 with a diverse line-up of Sting, Seal, Devo, Santigold, Steel Pulse, My Morning Jacket, ZZ Top, St. Paul & The Broken Bones, Tito Puente Jr. and more kicks off May 3 at Redondo Beach … 

Also that day, the Bob Mintzer Big Band is at LACMA, and two-night stands begin for Mike Epps at The Venetian and Stanley Jordan at Catalina Jazz Club  

Cypress Hill, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Three 6 Mafia, Ghostface Killah, Dilated Peoples, The Pharcyde and others convene May 4 for All Time High at Toyota Arena … 

The evening also finds Tamar Braxton at the Saban, and comic Kumail Nanjiani at the United Theater on Broadway (UTB)  

LA Phil Music and Artistic Director Gustavo Dudamel Leads Beethoven and Strauss on May 5 at Walt Disney Concert Hall  

Dizzy Wright is at Echoplex May 6, as Jessie J starts two nights of acoustic shows at the Teragram Ballroom  

21 Savage: American Dream Tour comes to the Forum on May 7 while Alex Cuba is at The Venice West … 

Shawn Stockman of Boyz II Men goes solo May 8 at Whisky A Go Go, while Marlon Wayans brings his stand-up act to UTB, Phony PPL jam at Echoplex, Judy Collins sings at The Coach House, and rapper bbymutha comes to The Paramount (also the following night at The Observatory)  

Cut Chemist spins May 9 at The Venice West, as Phil Rosenthal is at UTB, and the Gipsy Kings featuting Tonino Baliardo is at YouTube Theater. 

TASTY QUIP: “Every generation is defined by a great struggle or tragedy. And it’s wild that our kids will never know there was a period of time in this country where you had to make a choice between being online or being on the phone.” – HASAN MINHAJ  

TC ON TV: May 4 – “Star Wars: Tales of the Empire” (Disney+): A six-episode animated journey into the fearsome Galactic Empire complete with a Darth Vader sighting. “Katt Williams: Woke Foke” (Netflix): The controversial comic lets loose at YouTube Theater for Netflix’s second livestreamed stand-up event. “Two For One” (TCM): Spike Lee discusses and screens two films that inspired him – 1957’s “A Face in the Crowd” and 1951’s “Ace in the Hole” in this series devoted to the history, art form and allure of the double feature. “Saturday Night Live” (NBC): Dua Lipa 

May 6 – “The Neighborhood” (CBS): In the season finale, the whole crew including pregnant Courtney (Skye Townsend) heads out to see special guest Toni Braxton live in concert but guess what happens once the show begins. “Bob (Hearts) Abishola” (CBS): The rom-com series starring Billy Gardell and Folake Olowofoyeku comes to an end with this episode jumping ahead seven years later. 

May 7 – “Kiss the Future” (Paramount+): From producers Matt Damon and Ben Affleck comes this doc following rock group U2’s efforts to assist besieged Sarajevans. “The Express Way with Dule Hill” (PBS): “Texas” 

May 8 – “Dark Matter” (AppleTV+): This sci-fi series follows a physicist, professor and family man (Joel Edgerton) who — one night while walking home on the streets of Chicago — is abducted into an alternate version of his life. With Alice Braga, Dayo Okeniyi and Jennifer Connelly. “Hollywood Con Queen” (AppleTV+): The true story of the woman who conned victims to Indonesia for their big break only to milk their expenses. “Let It Be” (Disney+): Available for the first time in over 50 years is Michael Lindsay-Hogg‘s original 1970 film about The Beatles (shot amidst the swirl of their breakup) restored by Peter Jackson (of “Lord of the Rings” fame). “The View” (ABC): Letitia Wright, April Simpkins (publisher of her daughter and former Miss USA Cheslie Kryst’s posthumous book “By the Time You Read This)

May 9 – “Black Twitter: A People’s History” (Hulu): This three-part docuseries charts the rise, movements, voices and memes that made Black Twitter an influential and dominant force in nearly every aspect of American political and cultural life. With Jemele Hill, Sam Jay, W. Kamau Bell, Amanda Seales and more. “The GOAT” (Freevee): Wendell Holland (“Survivor”), Teck Holmes (“The Real World”), Da’Vonne Rogers (“Big Brother”) and other reality stars vie to be named the genre’s greatest of all time. “Mother of the Bride” (Netflix): Starring Brooke Shields, Benjamin Bratt, and Wilson Cruz. “Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin” (Max): A second season of this haunting coming-of-age drama with Sharon Leal and Lea Salonga. “Tamron Hall” (Syn): Trevor Jackson 

END QUOTE: “Everyone has their own experience. That’s why we are here, to go through our experience, to learn, to go down those paths and eventually you may have gone down so many paths and learned so much that you don’t have to come back again.” – PRINCE

As featured in the Los Angeles Wave and Independent, Tasty Clips is one of the leading entertainment columns in the nation, serving nearly one million weekly readers. Bill Vaughan may be reached attastyclips@yahoo.com, via Twitter @tastyclips, or Instagram @tasty_clips.

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