Review: D.L. Hughley, “Contrarian” on Netflix

I find D.L. Hughley a fascinating guy to hear opine on just about anything, whether it’s at the bar sharing a bottle of wine (back in the day) or listening to him on the radio.

Which is why I felt underwhelmed by his Netflix special, Contrarian.

Perhaps it’s because capturing his live show and then serving it up later, no matter if it’s a month later or in this case several more, somehow distracts from what makes Hughley so effective as a comedian. You want to hear his take on things in the moment. That timeliness gets lost when it’s sitting on the shelf.

But as I wrote in my review for Decider, all is not lost to time in Contrarian:

Hughley’s social commentary takes on greater satirical significance when he turns his attention squarely back on race.

He has always had things both humorous and insightful to say about race relations, from his ABC sitcom The Hughleys through The Original Kings of Comedy concert film, a weekly CNN series, and his syndicated radio program. That Peabody Award was no fluke.

So listen up when Hughley presents his observations on just why black people might be responsible numerically for more crimes against black people, why parents have to teach their children not to respect the police but to fear them, the power of the word “n—er,” and why football players are perhaps best-suited to tackle protests against police brutality and injustice.

Read my full review in Decider.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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