On Thursday, dropping by Stephens Auditorium on his latest stand-up comedy tour is one of the most successful and controversial comedians and actors of the 2000s: The Enunciator himself, Dane Cook.
This will be Cook’s seventh full-scale tour spanning his 29-year long career and his first tour in six years since his "Under Oath" tour in 2013. Named "Tell It Like It Is," Cook plans to do exactly that in his comeback performances, moving forward after a series of personal tragedies disrupted his career.
Starting out at 23 by performing stand-up in various comedy clubs around New York, Cook has come a long way from having shoes thrown at him at the Boston Garden. He has boasted multiple sold out shows and a variety of versatile acting credits, such as "Mr. Brooks" with Kevin Costner, "Good Luck Chuck" with Jessica Alba, "Dan in Real Life" with Steve Carell and the Pixar animated movie "Planes," just to name a few.
Career highlights include performing with fellow comedians in the "Tourgasm" tour in 2003, which was filmed and turned into a documentary series for HBO; hosting two episodes of Saturday Night Live, including a season premiere; launching a production company called Superfinger Entertainment and releasing a number of very successful comedy albums.
Released in 2003, “Harmful If Swallowed” was Cook's first comedy album, and is certified platinum. This was followed by his “Retaliation” album, which went double platinum and made Cook the first comedian in almost three decades to peak at a top five spot on the Billboard charts.
Other accolades on this provocative performer’s metaphoric shelf include winning the Teen Choice Award for Best Comedian in 2007, selling out Madison Square Garden, being named Rolling Stone’s Hot Comic of the Year and performing onstage for seven hours straight to beat the Laugh Factory’s endurance record all in that same year.
Citing more outlandish comedians such as Robin Williams and Eddie Murphy as inspiration for his commitment to character, Cook is recognized as one of the more highly excitable comedic acts to take the stage.
Known in his younger years as a tank-top-wearing character with an in-your-face personality, his acts center on observational comedy and veer into an array of subjects like the darker sides of human behavior, sexuality and politics, for example.
Not one to shy away, Cook is also known for his vigorous onstage persona, which warrants some physical activity and notoriety for saying whatever he wants. Vulgar tales, either short and sweet or in long-form storytelling are a combination of a tongue in cheek humor and colorful takes on human life as it exists.
Presently, though still high energy and as braggadocios and unfiltered as ever, Cook seems to have mellowed down in his comedy, adding more introspective takes to his acts and utilizing his personal drama to round out his humor. However, he does this while still keeping that interaction with the audience as alive at it was when he became one of the first entertainers to use the internet to communicate with his fanbase back in the days of MySpace.
Tickets for the show start at $39.50 and are available at Stephens Auditorium's box office, online at Ticketmaster.com or by calling 800-745-3000. The north doors on the ground floor and south east and south west doors will all open at 6:30pm and the show will start at 7:30pm. Per stadium rules, there will be no food or drink allowed inside. There will also be bag checks and security will be using metal detector wands.