“Our family philosophy is don’t get mad, get funny,” says Keenen Ivory Wayans, co-founder and host of In Living Color, the ’90s sketch-comedy show that brought the styles and rhythms of black culture into the homes of mainstream America; the program also introduced the world to Jim Carrey, Jennifer Lopez and several other members of the Wayans family. At the time, Wayans explains, black comedians “didn’t have the same opportunities. The dream was to be on Saturday Night Live and The Tonight Show. So similar to being influenced by the Zucker brothers when I did I’m Gonna Git You Sucka, when I pitched In Living Color, it was to do my version of SNL.”
Now on the road doing standup and gearing up for a 2014 world tour with his brothers Marlon, Shawn and Damon, Wayans is moving forward with his comedy material, which touches on divorce, being a dad and his years in the industry. “Me and my brothers aren’t doing too much topical stuff,” he adds. “It’s more, ‘Where is your life at now?’ Having teenagers, being single at my age. Stuff that’s not funny at the time, but looking back, it’s really funny.”
Wayans will perform six shows, starting tonight at 8 p.m. and running through Sunday at the downtown Comedy Works, 1226 15th Street. Tickets are $35; for more information, visit comedyworks.com.
Thu., Oct. 3, 8 p.m.; Fri., Oct. 4, 8 & 10 p.m.; Sat., Oct. 5, 7:30 & 9:45 p.m.; Sun., Oct. 6, 7 p.m., 2013