Photo Credit: Rick Kern/WireImage
Dave Chappelle is involved in a heated feud... with Hartford, Conn. The reclusive comedian was headlining a comedy festival in the Connecticut capitol last week, but got only a few minutes into his set before he became fed up with hecklers. Instead of continuing, Chappelle stopped telling jokes, smoked a cigarette, read an audience member's book, and walked offstage after about 20 minutes. (Watch the video of Chappelle leaving the stage below.)
The comedian is now using the incident as stand-up material, joking about Hartford's population of "young, white alcoholics."
"I don’t want anything bad to happen to the United States," Chappelle told a Chicago audience on Tuesday, "but if North Korea ever drops a nuclear bomb on this country, I swear to God I hope it lands in Hartford, Conn."
Chicago audiences may have been amused, but the Mayor of Hartford, alas, is not.
"Dave Chappelle should stick to his job, give the fans what they paid for and not disparage the good people of Hartford," Mayor Pedro Segarra said in a statement.
Maybe the good people of Hartford shouldn't disparage Dave Chappelle either, huh? He's a sensitive guy! But he's hardly the first comedian to get in trouble for going rogue during a performance. Here are four other comedy legends who found themselves in hot water after losing their cool onstage. Compared to what these guys did, Chappelle's defiant book-reading is nothing.
The actor who played Kramer on Seinfeld did serious damage to his reputation when he went on a racist tirade at the Laugh Factory in 2006. He's been apologizing ever since. (Watch one of those apologies below.)
The offbeat comedy legend would occasionally punish hostile audiences by reading The Great Gatsby out loud instead of telling jokes. A similar scene was played out by Jim Carrey in the Kaufman biopic Man in the Moon.
Lawrence was banned from Saturday Night Live after his monologue contained some unrehearsed jokes about feminine hygiene. Here's the edited TV version:
The 30 Rock star made some shockingly homophobic comments during a 2011 performance, and subsequently worked with gay rights organizations to try and repair the damage. After apologizing for Morgan, Tina Fey parodied the incident in a 30 Rock episode.