If you’re a standup comedy fan – or a student of pop culture more largely – something happened last Friday night you should know about.
Bill Hicks – who died of metastatic cancer 15 years ago – performed on “The Late Show with David Letterman.”
The comedy routine was taped in October of 1993, but it was never shown... until Friday night. Letterman accepted blame for banning the performance in the first place. And he apologized to Hicks’s mother, face to face.
The “censoring” of Bill Hicks by Letterman – who had been his biggest champion – was a major event in Hicks’s legendary life. Letterman didn’t know at the time that Hicks had pancreatic cancer and would be dead within months.
When he passed at the age of 32, Hicks had secured a reputation as the most groundbreaking, risk-taking American satirist since George Carlin.
Watch this ferocious set... and Letterman’s comments at the end. You’re bound to imagine what the George W. Bush years would’ve been like with Bill Hicks still around.