This may not come as a surprise, but Bill Cosby is funny.
The 74-year-old stand-up legend and hugely popular actor and writer hasn't lost his touch.
Omahans who gathered Sunday afternoon at the Orpheum Theater laughed and laughed at his stories.
Wearing a shirt that read “Thank you,” Cosby performed for almost two hours and kept the crowd rumbling with laughter.
Cosby focused on relationships and took his time telling his stories. The entire stand-up routine — which Cosby actually delivered while seated — started with him talking about his wife.
The stories focused on relationships between boys and girls and how people handle them as they change into men and women. Cosby talked about his wife and then went into love, the differences between men and women, dating, growing up without TV, learning about girls, his granddad Cosby, the Navy, getting beatings, misunderstandings between parents and children and finally back to his marriage.
The best parts were about girls and dating.
“When you're 16 years old, you have two things going for you: hope and stupidity,” he said.
As he talked about going on a date, he explained how things were different in his day.
“Girls dressed in a way where you had to look for it,” he said. “Today, you don't have to look for it. Matter of fact, it will come and get you.”
The audience roared whenever he dropped a quip like that, but his long stories were as good as his one-liners. One long story was about going to see Bernadette Johnson, the prettiest girl he knew, and how exciting their date was.
“I put my finger on top of her little finger. She didn't move it,” he said. Then he whispered, “I was so happy!”
Cosby paused for a moment and then said, “Her father was standing in the opening to the dining room. He had a gun.”
He also talked at length about his grandad Cosby, who apparently only had two books.
“They were the only ones in the library: the Old Testament and the new one,” he said.
Cosby's ability to get across a feeling or to tell a joke with only a facial expression, gesture or his tone of voice is incredible.
One of his funniest bits was about listening to his parents argue. He said he could hear them through the walls but that he didn't understand the words they said. He didn't say a single intelligible word but got tons of laughs by mimicking the argument through high-pitched mumbles.
Cosby's a master comedian. Where most comedians are good with one-liners, telling stories, physical jokes or voices, Cosby is amazing with all.
It's like he created comedy. The rest of us are just sort of funny imitators.
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