Bernie Mac

Nobody wanted to go onstage after Bernie Mac. You were always thinking, Can I do these things to the same audience? Mac, who died Aug. 9 at age 50, had this freedom, this edge--one minute he was saying funny material, then he was cutting you deep, and then he was saying something that made you think. There was a frenzy to it. If you went on after him, even if you were funny, they couldn't laugh anymore; it hurt. Bernie killed them. Each night you could bet he was going to jump off the page in a way that no one...

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