Epps gets laughs with help from Flava Flav

By Cynthia Retamozo

When comedian Mike Epps made a phone call to a friend while onstage, the crowd fell silent for the first time Friday night in Blackman Auditorium.

The quiet didn’t last long, before Public Enemy rapper and “Flavor of Love” star Flava Flav was on the other line. The audience erupted in cheers after hearing his voice.

Epps said Flava Flav was a perfect example of trashy TV with beautiful women vying for a less-than-handsome bachelor.

That was one major highlight of the evening’s pair of stand-up performances, which also included Dominique, a Def Jam Comedy Tour regular. The show was sponsored by the 2006 Homecoming Committee, the Latin American Student Organization, the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, Alpha Epsilon Pi and Beta Gamma Epsilon.

When Epps stepped onto the stage, his brand of comedy centered on topics about ethnicity and the differences between whites and blacks. This included differences in common courtesy, borrowing money and preferences when watching television personalities, like choosing between Judge Joe Brown and Dr. Phil.

Epps kept the vulgar tone of the night going by telling anecdotes about people he knew and stories about daily life. One story included a friend of his known as “Chicken Wing” who had a deformed arm and how the police attempted to handcuff him. Another story was about a wife who chose to sleep on the couch after an argument with her husband.

Epps’ act relied heavily on student interaction. Periodically, he would point to different students and note flaws. For one female student, he noted how she was a sophomore, yet had the bosom of a grandmother.

When talking about smoking, he pointed to another student and said “I know you smoke. I see the smoke coming out of your ears!” He also went to a white student and asked him to attempt to say vulgar phrases in a vernacular tongue.

Besides poking fun at the audience, Epps was self-deprecating as well.

He joked about how he was a poor pimp and had the laziest “hoes” whom he fed Lunchables. He also talked about how he was placed in special education classes when he was 19, and how he lost all the money he made from acting due to frivolous spending.

At one point, Epps said Northeastern’s name wrong, and boos from the audience ensued. Afterward, the comedian joked about how his mistake would air on BET one day and end his career.

Dominique kicked off the night’s festivities with jokes about ethnicity, drugs, police and relationships. But her acute interaction with the audience members drove her performance. Dominique joked about her own confusion over the term “middler” after she asked about the audience’s years.

Students said they enjoyed the audience participation and when Epps called Flava Flav.

“I thought the show was very good,” said Ashley Burrell, a middler human services major. “He improvised very well and appealed to all the different types of people that were there.”

Sophomore international business major Eric Ortiz echoed Burrell’s sentiments, and said he hoped that the comedian would return to Northeastern.

“I thought Mike Epps was freakin’ hilarious,” he said. “There were moments when I was laughing my butt off. I felt bad for the people he cracked on, but that part was hilarious.”

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