Friday, April 18, 2014

Bob Sumner - TV

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Bob Sumner - TV

By Rych McCain International/Nationally Syndicated Entertainment Columnist and Facebook (Like Me)

Bob Sumner

Returns With “The Laff Mobb’s We Got Next” Comedy Series!

Photos Courtesy ASPiRE

Bob Sumner
The first time Bob Sumner created a cable TV comedy series it was a smash hit that turned a lot of its unknown comics into major starts. We are referring to the Russell Simmons HBO Def Comedy Jam. However, Sumner caught a lot of flack from the fact that the comics were vulgar and cussed every other word. Some twenty years later history repeats itself but this time around Sumner is keeping it 100% clean. The new series is titled “The Laff Mobb’s We Got Next” comedy series now airing on the ASPiRE Cable TV Network. 


  When examining the reason for creating this new show, Sumner explains, “The show came about because it was time for a change in stand-up comedy. About twenty some odd years ago I kind of played a part in bringing night club style comedy to television through the Def Comedy Jam brand. Through the brand we were able to launch many, many careers of today’s supper stars in comedy and I just felt like twenty years later I would like to do it again but do it in a manner where we wouldn’t receive the criticism that was received from the previous show. Although the show did very, very well and it was critically acclaimed, we still took our hard knocks from the language, it wasn’t for everybody. Whereas if you go back to the days of Ed Sullivan  you would see a young Richard Pryor. We already know what Richard Pryor was known for but what he also had was a great point of view. And that’s what we want to do with “Laff Mobb’s We Got Next.”

  Its like the next generation of stand-ups and sitcom stars so we’re hoping. It still has that edge but its clean comedy that the whole family can watch and hopefully we can develop some situational comedies from it.”

     This then begs the question does dirty actually pay more than being clean? Sumner put it this way, “It’s an acquired taste but blue comedy can only go so far. Clean comedy can go a long way as long as it is funny.


There’s clean comedy that for lack of a better term is kind of corny. I’ve seen it done before. But there is also clean comedy again, if you put some spice on it and the bottom line is saying something that people can relate to and put a little accent on your joke if you have to. But a lot of times you have blue comedians who every other word is a four letter word and it is totally unnecessary. When you try to censor it is Bleep, Bleep, Bleep.”
  How did Sumner select these comedians and what was his process” He points out, “You know I tell everybody if I walk into a comedy room its an audition. I take notes constantly and I don’t just center myself around Los Angeles and New York. I’m known to go any and everywhere that I’m asked to come to for a showcase. I don’t really look at tapes, I want to look at you live because I want to come in there and aim that camera and people tend to freeze in front of a camera. It was easy for me to shoot this first season because I kind of knew which comedians can work clean. You can tell by the beats of the joke like if somebody is trying to hard to keep it clean. It’s almost like they are thinking about their next joke to make sure they don’t use a four letter word and things of that nature. So I take notes of who those people are out here and I brought it all to the stage and the rest is history. It will also educate the stand up comedian who is trying to change their style and hopefully the next season we’ll go out here cross country doing showcases and we’ll see who has that.” 

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