What’s So Funny?
Any man who'd begin a job interview by threatening his potential employer must have a few screws loose. But anybody who's followed the near two-decade-long career of comedian J.B. Smoove knows the "40-ish" Mount Vernon, New York, native is a card or two short of a full deck.
Nose to nose with neurotic comedian Larry David during an audition for the sixth season of HBO's Curb Your Enthusiasm, J.B. introduced himself and began his improvisational screening with, "So you wanna improv, Larry? OK, let's improv. Just don't be surprised if I haul off and slap you across the face." By meeting's end he'd floored David, and months later, he made funny freeloader Leon one of the season's beacons of absurd hilarity. Not bad for Chris Rock's Pootie Tang sidekick.
The former Saturday night Live writer is a master of freestyle comedy, so KING challenged him to a duel. Presented with three scenes, J.B. must get into character...and make you laugh. Time to put up or shut up. The latter's probably out of the question.
Scene: J.B. comes home and receives some shocking news from his best friend and roomate.
BFF: I've got something important to talk to you about.
J.B. Damn, what's so serious?
I'm attracted to girls and guys
You're what?! So are you pitching or catching? And I'm not talking baseball. I'm talkin about your balls.
I'm not sure what you're asking me
Are you the dude behind the dude or are you the dude in front of the dude that's behind the fucking dude?
I've played both positions
So, when you shoot your foul shots, you can use your right or left hand?
I guess I'm ambidextrous. A hybrid homosexual, if you will [giggles].
Nah, man. I thought I knew you. I don't even wanna be around that shit. So you can pack up all yur shit - all your Tupperware, all the little Victoria's Secret shit you got laying around this motherfucker. Get your leather chaps, your motherfuckin' size 13 stilettos...Where you get thigh-high Timberlands from?
You're not funny, man. I never said I was a cross-dresser. You should be used to this, J.B. You live in LA. What's the real issue here?
We could be playin' ball and you smack me on the ass. I don't know what's up. I don't mind motherfuckers smackin my ass during a basketball game, but don't be smacking my ass at a wedding like I made a good play. We in the motherfuckin' grocery store and you could smack me on the ass like, "Good loaf of bread, son." What the fuck is all that about?
To check out more scenes J.B. Smoove did with KING, cop the Mar/Apr '08 issue, on newsstands now!
Watch Clips of Curb Your Enthusiasm featuring J.B. Smoove as Leon