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April 04, 2003 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2003-04-04

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ail4, 2003




By Daniel Yowell
Daily Arts Writer

Courtesy of Beggar's Banquet

If it's not Scotish, it's crrrap.

Scodand's Delgados
storm the Shelter

This year on the University of
Michigan campus, April Fool's week
brings with it several attention-grab-
bing, politically significant events:
U.S. Supreme Court oral arguments
in the University
admissions cases,
the annual Hash Dave
Bash and ... live Chappelle is
stand-up by Dave BlackZilla
Chappelle? Saturday at 8 p.m.
That's right. and11 p.m.
The star and cre- SOLD OUT
ator of "Half At the Michigan
Baked" and the Theater
hit Comedy Cen-
tral series "Chappelle's Show"
brings his racially-charged, drug
culture-inspired comedy to the
Michigan Theater this Saturday -
the very day of Hash Bash. With
controversy over affirmative action
and support for the decriminaliza-
tion of marijuana raging in Ann
.Arbor, Dave Chappelle should have
no trouble tying his trademark
streetwise comedy to the pressing
issues on the minds of Michigan
"If you get the opportunity to
make a statement in your career,
that's gravy," says Chappelle. "But I
don't look to that as my ultimate,
end all, be all goal. I am not the cat
that you should be getting your
moral and spiritual guidance from.
I'm a comedian."
Although Chappelle adheres to a
strictly "funny first", philosophy, he
is definitely not afraid of taking on
sensitive topics. He has received

plenty of flak for the surprisingly
regular use of the word "nigger" on
"Chappelle's Show," which is under-
standable, he admits.
"They're free to criticize it," says
Chappelle. "I understand it could be
painful to some people. It doesn't
have the same connotation to me.
The thing about the 'N' word is that
I don't think the word itself is offen-
sive as much as the malice that's
associated with.(it), like the hatred
it embodies. As far as people who
criticize it, I'm not going to blast
my critics. They have every right to.
I don't hate them for that."
In response to comments suggest-
ing that "Chappelle's Show" is
"racially heavy," Dave offers a
reminder that the show is a collabo-
ration between himself and "Half
Baked" co-writer Neil Brennan.
"What (people) don't understand is
that when we're writing the show,
it's a black dude and a white dude
sitting at the typewriter together. It's
racial harmony, writing comedy to
offend everybody."
Dave has sharpened his satirical
edge on a colorful array of topics
over the first three months of
"Chappelle's Show." He's made fun
of celebrity transgressions in his R.
Kelly video parody "(I Wanna) Pee
on You," explored racial stereotypes
with the "Ask a Black Dude" seg-
ment and celebrated the ingenuity of
the desperate male in his sports doc-
umentary parody "Great Moments
in Hookup History."
In the "Blackzilla" sketch, a
giant-sized Dave wreaks havoc
through Tokyo, tangling with
Godzilla and then emptying his
bladder on the unsuspecting and vis-
ibly appalled masses. "Blackzilla"

By John Honkala
Daily Arts Writer

Touring in support of their Janu-
ary release, Hate, the follow-up to
their brilliant, Mercury Prize-nomi-
nated The Great Eastern, the Del-
gados will be playing Detroit's the
Shelter tomorrow night with fellow
Glaswegaians, Aerogramme.
Guitarist and vocalist Emma Pol-
lock spoke to The Michigan Daily
last week about the Scottish and
American music scenes.
The Michigan Daily: Why do
you think that Glasgow is home to
so many great bands?
Emma Pollock: Glasgow has
always been a very open and friend-
ly place. Well, I say friendly, but it
can actually be quite a violent city
as well - there's no point in pre-
tending. But people are very open
to meeting new people and doing
new things, and it's a city that really
enjoys itself in many ways. It's got
such a ridiculous amount of pubs
and bars per capita. And I think in
many respects the personality of the
folks who live here is a great one
for a lot of independent thought,
and in music that's obviously a real-
ly important thing.
Glasgow bands don't usually fall
into any kind of trend. There's a lot
of people doing a lot of different
things, from traditional folk to just
wanting to play their favorite
AC/DC numbers in a pub at night.
If you want to get in a band, all
you really have to do is hang about
(in a pub) for a few weeks and you'll
probably start talking to someone
looking for a band member.
TMD: The Delgados are leaving
for the States within the week. How
do you guys like playing here?
EP: Well it's very, very exciting.

I mean, at the end of the day, when
you're young, you grow up with an
image of America on your televi-
sion screen. I think America's got a
really healthy alternative scene
because there's a lot of college
radio stations supporting things,
and being such a large country I
don't think it's driven by trade quite
as much as Britain.
It's very difficult for such a large
country to dictate everybody at all
points what they listen to. So at the
end of the day there has to be some
individuality that comes out of that.
(But) when the majors do kick in in
America they're very, very effec-
tive. But at all echelons of the scale
I think there's a lot of individuality
and a chance for bands like us who
will never really be number one in
TMD: Hate is a very interesting
album because the music is mostly
optimistic but the lyrics are quite
dark. Can you comment on that?
EP: Alan and I coincidentally
- we didn't really talk about it
together - ended up writing lyrics
that were of a completely introspec-
tive, personal nature. It had been
quite a difficult year for me and
(bassist and husband) Paul (Savage).
We had a baby in January of last
year and I, unfortunately, came
down with quite a bit of depression
after it. It was quite a daunting time,
really, and one that kind of makes
you grow up really, really fast. You
end up questioning so many things
about yourself and life in general. It
can be a very introspective time.
It's not to say we're the most
depressing bunch of people you
could ever meet because that's very
much not the truth. But I think an
appreciation of both sides - the
light and the dark - makes a much
healthier life.

Hey baby, stop selling weed!

Courtesy or Comeay Central

tops it all off by satisfying another
urge; the sketch concludes as Chap-
pelle straddles a volcano and, well,
has his way with it.
Despite the free reign that Come-
dy Central has given Chappelle,
some degree of censorship is
inevitable on a basic cable network.
On the contrary, Saturday night's

back-to-back performances by
Chappelle will offer fans an oppor-
tunity to see Blackzilla completely
Chappelle will perform Saturday
night to two sold out crowds starting
at 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m.. "Chap-
pelle's Show" airs Wednesday nights
at 10:30 p.m. on Comedy Central.

'Copenhagen' a tutorial in the science of acting

By Melissa Runstrom
Daily Arts Writer

For etheir staging of Michael Frayn's "Copen-
hagen," the Performance Network's theater puts a
circular stage at its center, with the audience sur-
rounding it on all sides. The modest setting, deco-
rated with a sparse three chairs, serves as the

perfect minimalist backdrop for
acting showcase.
The play is about the leg-
endary meeting between scien-
tists Werner Heisenberg and
Niels Bohr in 1941. The meet-
ing, which has long been a
source of real-life speculation,
takes place between Heisen-
berg, leader of the Nazi atomic
project, and his mentor Bohr, a

an extraordinary
Playing until
April 13th
$12 student rush
At the Performance

Gentlemen! You can't fight in here ... this is the War Room!

half-Jewish man living in occupied Denmark. The
two go for a walk and come back with their
friendship jeopardized. The question that takes
precedence in the play is about what exactly hap-
pened on the night Heisenberg and Bohr ended
their renowned friendship.
Throughout the story this question produces
several reenactments of the fateful night and
morphs into more of a philosophical question
involving life, truth and how Heisenberg's uncer-
tainty principal can affect more than just parti-
cles. Indeed, Heisenberg's actions during World
War II seem to suggest that the principal can be
applied to his own life. The play touches on the
fact that no one is certain of how much Heisen-
berg tried to stop the Nazi nuclear project from

succeeding, and perhaps not even Heisenberg
"Copenhagen" relies almost solely on the per-
formances of its three characters. Werner Heisen-
berg (Malcolm Tulip) catches your eye right away
and within minutes commands a certain captiva-
tion of the crowd. Robert Grossman plays Niels
Bohr with stunning precision and delicacy. The
final character is Bohr's wife Margarethe (Susan
Marie) who adds a necessary balance between the
other actors by grounding the performance.
For the most part the acting in "Copenhagen" is
first-rate. Tulip brings an important lightness to.
his troubled character, which adds depth and clar-
ity into the man that Heisenberg is. Grossman
plays Bohr perfectly. He is utterly convincing as a
shrewd, aging scientist during the Second World
War. It is unclear, in the beginning, just how
Marie's Margarethe is supposed to fit into the

story, but by the second act she hits her stride and
her acting makes an important impact, which
helps tie the play together. The lighting, primarily
to illustrate time passage, is used very effectively.
The setting is minimized and the circular stage
helps in illustrating certain scientific principals
and how they relate to and parallel actual life. The
stage reminds you of Bohr's atom model while
also helping illustrate the uncertainty principal.
This stage, with the audience all around, seems to
represent the differing views on the meeting
between Bohr and Heisenberg, as well as the
diverse perspectives within the world itself.
As a story, "Copenhagen" is excellently writ-
ten, but it takes a confident and capable cast to
pull this story off, drawing you into Nazi occu-
pied Denmark and into the lives of these three
people. It is a difficult endeavor, which, in this
case, produces stunning results.

Not even average, ABC's
'Regular Joe' just blows

By Douglas Wernert
Daily Arts Writer

With "Regular Joe," the new com-
edy on ABC, you need look no fur-
ther than the title to understand the
premi-se. Joe Binder is a typical
father with some ordinary kids and a
regular job and he helps resolve the
usual conflicts that arise in his stan-
dard household.
All synonyms for
"regular" aside, Regular Joe
the show is noth- Fridays at 9:30 p.m.
ing too spectacu- ABC
lar, and it merely
fills a void in the humdrum spring
schedule, at least for the time being.
Daniel Stern ("Home Alone") is
our man Joe, a single parent who
runs a hardware store with his typical
rebellious teenage son Grant ,(John
Francis Daley) and Sitvar (Brian
George), a humorous, devious Indian
man obsessed with the paint-mixing
machine. In addition, he's also cop-
ing with his daughter Joanie (Jackie
Tohn), a teenage mother, and a wise-
guy father named Baxter (Judd
Mrcch) one onn would exnect to

problems in this all-too-predictable
The storylines are nothing new,
and disappointingly, Baxter is left
out of the shuffle, when he is clearly
the show's secret weapon. Sitvar's
antics will provide some laughs (his
appearance in a MC Hammer cos-
tume at the end of the first episode
is quite funny), but such jokes aren't
that hard to come by these days. If
you want laughs with these story-
lines, you can always watch "Full
House" reruns.
"Regular Joe" is a regular show,
plain and simple. However, when
today's television features people
marrying total strangers and eating
pig intestines to win money (don't
worry, that's two separate shows),
the ordinary shows just don't cut it
anymore. Stern gives it a good try,
but he's still stuck in the shadow of
being the stupid criminal in
Macaulay Culkin movies. This is one
of those cases where you can defi-
nitely judge the book by its cover.
The name says it all. Sorry, Joe.

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