who passed away this morning here in Los Agneles?
groundbreaking, trailblazing, funny as hell, multi-dimensional, terrific actor, and without whom there wouldnt have been eddie murphy,
chris rock or dave chappelle.
well, maybe those guys would have been around,
but it wouldnt have been as easy for them if pryor hadnt made them seem tame in comparison.
Here are some quotes from the Man, followed by the script of a skit he did in the first season of SNL.
On being Black: “It’s been a struggle for me because I had a chance to be white and refused.”
“I went to Zimbabwe…I know how white people feel in America now, relaxed! Cause when I heard the police car I knew they weren’t coming after me!”
“I never met anybody who said when they were a kid, I wanna grow up and be a critic.”
“I’d like to make you laugh for about ten minutes though I’m gonna be on for an hour.”
“When I did cocaine, I felt like a new man… and he wanted some too.”
“Justice in the courts? Yeah, there’s justice in the courts…just us niggers!”
“When you ain’t got no money, you gotta get an attitude.”
[as televangelist] “People are always asking me, Reverend; if you need money so bad, why don’t you sell one of your houses, or cars or get rid of some of that jewelry?’ And I always reply, ‘Are you crazy!'”
[looks at the phone bank]
“How much money have we raised so far? None! OK, this is a message for all you white people out there. Part of the money we raise tonight will go to the Back to Africa movement and… [every phone rings]
Mr. Wilson…..Richard Pryor
Interviewer: Alright, Mr. Wilson, you’ve done just fine on the Rorshact.. your papers are in good order.. your file’s fine.. no difficulties with your motor skills.. And I think you’re probably ready for this job. We’ve got one more psychological test we always do here. It’s just a Word Association. I’ll throw you out a few words – anything that comes to your mind, just throw back at me, okay? It’s kind of an arbitrary thing. Like, if I say “dog”, you’d say..?
Mr. Wilson: “Tree”.
Interviewer: “Tree”. [ nods head, prepares the test papers ] “Dog”.
Mr. Wilson: “Tree”.
Mr. Wilson: “Slow”.
Mr. Wilson: “Snow”.
Mr. Wilson: “Black”.
Mr. Wilson: “Pod”.
Interviewer: [ casually ] “Negro”.
Mr. Wilson: “Whitey”.
Mr. Wilson: [ silent, sure he didn’t hear what he thinks he heard ] What’d you say?
Interviewer: [ repeating ] “Tarbaby”.
Mr. Wilson: “Ofay”.
Mr. Wilson: “Redneck”.
Mr. Wilson: [ starting to get angry ] “Peckerwood!”
Mr. Wilson: [ defensive ] “Cracker!”
Interviewer: [ aggressive ] “Spearchucker”.
Mr. Wilson: “White trash!”
Interviewer: “Jungle Bunny!”
Mr. Wilson: [ upset ] “Honky!”
Mr. Wilson: [ really upset ] “Honky Honky!”
Interviewer: [ relentless ] “Nigger!”
Mr. Wilson: [ immediate ] “Dead honky!” [ face starts to flinch ]
Interviewer: [ quickly wraps the interview up ] Okay, Mr. Wilson, I think you’re qualified for this job. How about a starting salary of $5,000?
Mr. Wilson: Your momma!
Interviewer: [ fumbling ] Uh.. $7,500 a year?
Mr. Wilson: Your grandmomma!
Interviewer: [ desperate ] $15,000, Mr. Wilson. You’ll be the highest paid janitor in America. Just, don’t.. don’t hurt me, please..
Mr. Wilson: Okay.
Interviewer: [ relieved ] Okay.
Mr. Wilson: You want me to start now?
Interviewer: Oh, no, no.. that’s alright. I’ll clean all this up. Take a couple of weeks off, you look tired.
[ fade ]