IF YOU HAVE ANY super music-geek friends, you've undoubtedly heard a story, or six, about seeing a band before they became huge. Well, if you want to claim similar bragging rights about a comedian, you'd do well to hit this month's edition of Funny Over Everything, the stand-up showcase hosted by local comedians/heroes Sean Jordan and Shane Torres.
This time around, they're bringing in Jerrod Carmichael, a North Carolina-bred comic on the precipice of becoming a household name. He's already taken one big step forward with his appearance in the blockbuster Seth Rogen comedy Neighbors, and his next two high-profile projects should push him over the edge: an hour-long stand-up special for HBO directed by firebrand filmmaker Spike Lee, and a sitcom he's developing with NBC.
It's a rare show of faith from the comedy establishment, but that says everything about how good Carmichael is. His stand-up sneaks up on you. His lackadaisical delivery and sly commentary lull you until, before you know it, you're doubled over.
It can be something as simple as equating a heroin addict's itch for a fix with his need to find his cell phone charger, or frequenting Chick-fil-A in spite of its owner's anti-gay stance: "When I eat there, people drive by and scream stuff at me. They don't know what it's like to feel ashamed of doing something that you love. They don't understand what it's like to be ridiculed by society for doing what comes natural to you."
How Carmichael plans on adapting his arch worldview to the populist medium of a network TV show is anybody's guess. But no matter how he fares during primetime, there's little doubt that his star is on the rise. Monday's show is a rare chance to bask in the glow before it goes supernova.