Marlon Wayans took the stage at the Templeton-Blackburn Alumni Memorial Auditorium on Thursday and made the audience a little more “woke-ish.”
Though the White Chicks, Scary Movie and A Haunted House actor and stand up comedian was an hour late to take the stage, his material and message heavily made up for it.
After a quick opener, Wayans began his show by addressing the diversity in the room and how cool some of the white people in Ohio are. He talked about some of the similarities and differences between races, and then moved on to the dangers of children with outie belly buttons.
Wayans spent a great deal of his comedy hour discussing his daughter coming out as lesbian. Though he made a great deal of jokes about the whole ordeal, including recounting how thrilled he was on her prom night when he didn’t have to worry about teen pregnancy, he really emphasized the lesson of acceptance and love he has for his daughter and who she is.
Aside from his daughter, Wayans touched on the idea of college and how expensive it is. He discussed how he has to put his daughter through college, and soon he’ll have to put his son through college, and he even brought in the whole scandal where famous actors paid to get their children accepted into certain schools. The whole thing was hilarious and relatable, which followed his theme for the evening.
Though the show was mildly offensive, it worked for Wayans’ act. Wayans used the mic as a prop quite frequently, often times in an inappropriate manner, but his expressions were a huge part of pulling off his jokes. His expressions and body movements were a great testament to his acting skills, which he combined with his comedy in the act. Fans of Wayans’ work could recognize his mannerisms from a lot of his films.
Arguably Wayans greatest asset is his relatability. He is candid and honest in his material, and the entire hour seemed very conversational, rather than presentational. Through comedic facial expressions, hilarious movements around the stage and brilliant material, Wayans won the audience’s attention with his comedy.
It’s his serious message that won the audience’s hearts, however. Wayans carried a message of love and acceptance, and how the audience should always try to look at the glass completely full, noting that life just sometimes takes a sip. He told the audience that people don’t choose who they are, they’re born with it.
Wayans transcends most comedians with the fact that he packs comedic content with a strong message.
The audience, including OU students, were huge fans of his comedy hour.
Deja Martin, a senior studying industrial and systems engineering, went to Wayans’ comedy hour with her friends from Cincinnati, who came to see the show.
"I came to see Marlon because my friends, who came all the way from Cincinnati, wanted to come watch him perform," Martin said. "I loved it. He was absolutely hilarious."
Jade Hamner, a student from Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, has always loved Wayans and decided to go with Martin to the show.
"I really enjoy watching Marlon and Sean together, but Marlon by himself was hilarious," Hamner said. "My favorite parts were when he did bits on his son and daughter."
Bobbette Spires, a resident of Wellston, Ohio, lives to come to events at Memorial Auditorium, and was so excited to see Wayans’ comedy hour.
“I thought it was amazing,” Spires said. “I can relate to him because I have a daughter who came out gay her freshman year, and I feel like I could sit and have conversation with him. It was awesome and he was hilarious.”
Baylee DeMuth contributed to the coverage.