Wayne Brady understands that as an entertainer it is par for the course that he may end up being the punchline of a joke from time to time.
But the gameshow host says being the punchline of a Paul Mooney joke during a sketch for “The Chappelle Show” is one of the few times he could not muster up laughter. While speaking with the hosts of “The Breakfast Club Power 105” he recalled Mooney — while in character as The Negrodamus — saying, “White people love Wayne Brady because he makes Bryant Gumbel look like Malcolm X.”
“The joke was wack. It’s not a funny joke,” said Brady during the Nov. 4 interview. He went on to explain that aside from the joke not being funny to him — plenty of people online think otherwise — it only perpetuated criticism he and Gumbel, who are both Black, received for their large appeal to white audiences.
“He made that joke based on the fact that he felt that Black culture would laugh at Bryant Gumbel and Wayne Brady,…these words have power culturally,” said the “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” comedian. He continued with, “You would tear down two people who are trailblazers in their own thing to get across the point that they’re not Black enough. You don’t own my Black card, Paul. Nobody owns my Black card.”
While the joke obviously left Brady with a bit of a chip on the shoulder, he made sure to even the score by making his own appearance on the hit sketch show. The three-minute bit, which was themed after the film “Training Day,” centered around Brady dragging Chapelle around a city as he committed a drive-by shooting, collected payments from prostitutes and killed a police officer — all images that countered Brady’s squeaky clean persona.
“We did it in a whirlwind,” explained Brady of the one-night shoot. “I wrote the bit where I sang the song and killed the police officer and then the sandwich thing at the end. I knew when we were doing it that it was going to be special.”
Fans who have found the humor in both Mooney and Brady’s jokes had plenty so say about the comedian/singer’s story.
“Brady’s one was def Top 10 best sketches for me [laughing tears emoji] explained a lot now hearing the back story.”
“Nooo Wayne!! You can’t flip that joke [laughing tears emoji] it was funny and the fact that he said Brant was more thug than you is forever funny [laughing crying emoji]”
“You can’t get mad at Black people for picking fun at how you appeal to the whitewashed culture.”