Donnell Rawlings has been known for two distinct things. Fans of comedy can easily remember eir from the stint ey had on the short-lived Chappelle show, while those into more serious types of show have likely seen eir on The Wire. On From Ashy to Classy, Rawlings looks to showcase the former. What seems to be the strongest side to Rawlings is how well ey plays to the different populations present in the audience. For those that were there (and those that purchased the DVD) that had checked out Rawlings before, there are a number of nods to previous material. For those that have not had the chance, Rawlings makes it easy for fans to be made through humor that all can appreciate.
Aside from the feature presentation, Image’s release of the title only contains one other bonus featurette. This parody, a take-off of Erykah Badu’s forgettable “Window Seat”, may just be the only thing yet that makes me appreciate the caterwauling “style” of the Texas performer. However, the funny that Rawlings sparkles upon the original will definitely remind viewers of a slightly more risqué Weird Al.
I understand that most comedy specials end at about the hour mark, but Rawlings’ material is fresh and funny enough that I found myself wanting more. Let’s hope that “From Ashy To Classy” is the beginning of Rawlings’ stratospheric rise to comedy superstardom. If that happens, maybe Chris Rock and Dane Cook can stop resting on their laurels so much. From Ashy to Classy shows that Rawlings may have had much more clout on the Chappelle Show than I previously thought, and should not be slept on during the end of 2010 and into 2011.
Donnell Rawlings – From Ashy To Classy / 2010 Image / 65 Minutes / http://www.myspace.com/donnellrawlings / http://www.image-entertainment.com/