One of TV's biggest comedy events is coming to Netflix.
The first-ever Def Comedy Jam debuted on HBO in 1992 and it was a game-changer almost immediately. Beginning as a half-hour stand-up comedy series, it has evolved into a brand all its own, known for its energy and material being raw, uncut and always steeped in hilarious observations that were definitely of the culture. Hosted by Martin Lawrence and featuring DJ Kid Capri as the man handling the music during the show, Russell Simmons has used the show to introduce many African-American comedians to the masses who are household names now, including the likes of Chris Tucker, Dave Chappelle, Bernie Mac, and Adele Givens. The show was also extremely popular in its original time slot and proved to be a booster for HBO money-wise. Now, to celebrate its quarter-century anniversary, the vaunted comedy franchise is making its way onto the best-known streaming service in the world: Netflix.
The company announced earlier this morning (August 24th) that they will air a Def Comedy Jam 25th anniversary special later on this fall. Because of the high-profile platform, it's not surprising to hear that a stable full of big names will be included in the proceedings, such as Chappelle, Kevin Hart, Tiffany Haddish, Bill Bellamy, Cedric the Entertainer, Mike Epps, just to name a few. It's just the latest move towards more stand-up content from Netflix, who have been quite busy securing some of comedy's biggest names to air their specials exclusively on their platform. Chappelle already has experience with this, giving fans two new specials earlier this year as part of his deal with the streaming giant. Amy Schumer, Tracey Morgan and Louis CK have also premiered new stand-up specials on Netflix in 2017, with new material from Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock and several others set to debut on the platform in the near future.
This news also goes against previous reports that Russell Simmons' 2015 deal with HBO would keep the anniversary special on the paid cable channel. There's no word on how or why the content will be moving to Netflix, but for paid subscribers, this update is most definitely a positive one.
Check out the trailer for the 25th anniversary special below.