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Bernie Mac, 1957-2008

by Angel Cohn August 11, 2008 1:15 pm
Bernie Mac, 1957-2008

The news that funnyman Bernie Mac passed away over the weekend from complications due to pneumonia still hasn't quite sunk in. All I can hear in my head is his famous quote from Ocean's Eleven, where he spouted, "They might as well call it whitejack!" It still makes me laugh. The 50-year-old actor may be best known for his work in those Ocean's flicks, where he looked fly and cracked wise, but personally I've seen some of his less notable film work and he was always the best thing about them.

Guess Who is not a good film (in fact, it's a kind of bizarre remake of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner), but him torturing Ashton Kutcher isn't all bad. Mr. 3000 had a fairly ridiculous premise, and yet he sold it. He was a scene-stealer: from Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle's Bosley to Transformers' car salesman, Mac was always the one character who you just couldn't ignore, a larger-than-life personality that never blended into the wallpaper. [My favorite line, from Full Throttle: "You ain't ever heard of no black Irish? Who do you think invented the McRib? The shamrock shake?" - Zach]

In my humble opinion, he was the funniest of all The Original Kings of Comedy (though I can't say I'm a big fan of any of the others); his delivery was spot-on and his observational and profanity-filled style was appealing without being offensive. I was trying to find a clip of his stand-up to really do justice to the man, but I couldn't find any that would be safe for work. They're out there; look and enjoy. Of course, you'd be safer looking for clips of his TV series instead, which was a hoot as he took on the role of reluctant family man, and curbed his on-stage cussing. He had a great smile, a great laugh and an interesting perspective on child-rearing that I can totally get behind. He will truly be missed... especially if someone gets the bright idea to make Ocean's 14.

TAGS: bernie mac

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