James Davis - Bringing Cultures Together on Hood Adjacent

July 12, 2017 - James Davis 07/12/2017 Views: 9,304

James Davis explains how his Comedy Central show Hood Adjacent addresses racial discrimination in an entertaining way and reminisces about his failed career choices. (5:13)

Watch Full Episode

Please welcome James Davis.

(cheers and applause)

(applause and cheering swell)

-(James whoops)-Welcome, my dude.

-Oh-ho!-Welcome to it.

-Oh-ho! -(laughter)

Is there somethingI should know?

-Man, this is amazing.-What...?

I'm here, I'm on Daily Show.

-You're killing, by the way,brother. -Oh, thank you, bro.

-You are killing. -I appreciateit. I appreciate that, man.

-(cheers, applause) -Thank youvery much. Thank you very much.

You are killing itwith your new show.

Let's talk about that-- Hood Adjacent.

For those with no clue,what does that mean?

'Cause I love the title-- Hood Adjacent.

You knowwhat Hood Adjacent sounds like?

It sounds like somethingsomeone would call a place

that they want to sellnear Brooklyn,

-but not quite in Brooklyn.-Right.

-(laughter)-Like a hipster.

"It's like hood,but, like, not really.

It's, like, hood adjacent."That's what it sounds like.

-I mean, that's kind ofhow the phrase was born. -Right.

It was me telling my friendsat private school where I lived,

but in a way where they weren'tafraid to come see me.

-(laughter)-I'm in the hood... adjacent.

Like, you're not...you're not there.

You're... next door.


Like, where the movies happen--I didn't...

I don't livewhere they shot the scenes.

I live wherethey kept the craft services.


So, you can feel it,but it's not here.

It's yonder.

Did your...did your friends visit you?

-Yeah. -Oh, your private schoolfriends visited you?

I had a friend, Matt--uh, very white, Jewish.

I went to his bar mitzvah.

He lived in Manhattan Beach--for my birthday,

he came downto Crenshaw and Stocker.

-Slept over.-Wow.

And he got out of therein the morning.

-(laughter)-You know what?

-At least he came.-But he came.

He came, man. He came through.

Hood Adjacent is a new show

you're hosting,you're executive producing.

It's a really fun concept,

'cause you're playingwith ideas.

Like, part of itfeels like sketches,

but at the same timeit's stand-up,

but at the same time you'regoing around challenging...

Like, like, just explainthe, uh, Woke My Ride.

That-that... the little clipthat we played,

that was from one of theseason's first-- Woke My Ride.

-What on earth does that mean?-So, we had an activism episode.

-Right. -And so, one of themain critiques about activism

is that we don't havethe solutions

to the problemswe're complaining about.

-Right.-And so I address the haters

of black activism, and I'm like,okay, you want solutions?

I'm gonna give you solutions.

But I'm a comedian,

so I'm gonna comedicallyidentify the problems

-that black men facewhile driving. -Right.

I'm gonna explainwhat Driving While Black is.

And that's my way of,you know...

discussing the Philando Castilesand these moments.

Like, one of my favorite thingswas how you broke down...

that-that moment, that-that...the silence of the...

-of the NRA and all...-Appreciate that. Yeah.

You know,'cause we're using our platform.

-(whooping, applause)-Right.

And so...

So that... so that...

so that piece ismy Hood Adjacent Trevor Noah.

I love... I love that, because,like, it's really funny.

You-you change topicsin every single episode.

-You're moving through lifeas it pertains... -Mm-hmm.

Uh, Woke My Rideis what we just saw.

What else did you guys doin the show

that we should look forward to?

We did a whole episodeabout gangs.

We did a whole episodeabout golf.

I mean, that's...that's my show, Hood Adjacent.

I think... in the beginningI'm showing people who I am,

-where I come from.-Right.

So I'm appealing more to,I guess, the hood

or the black audience to...

-'Cause I'm being biographical,of where I come from. -Right.

-But now that I... -You play...you play a lot of golf.

I just shot a commercialfor the PGA tour.

-Presidents Cup.-Oh, wow. Wow.

I got a... I got a...

I got... I...

-I'm nice at that thing.-Oh, wow.

I don't... I don't know golf, soI don't know what you just did.

-I-I just killed it.-I don't...

You just, you stood upand then you dabbed.

That's... I don't know what...I don't know what that was.

I pretty much showeda very athletic takeaway,

and then anything elseI would've knocked over a cup.

Oh, so, okay,so that was, like...

So, like, did you...when you were growing up,

did you dream of beinglike Tiger Woods? Was that...

-Definitely.-Oh, really?

This is the plan C.


-I wanted to be on the PGA tour,-Right.

then college happened--too fun, lost track.


And then it was,let me be an actor.

Auditions--where do those come from?

Uh... so then it wentto be comedian,

and then we became a writer,and now we're full circle,

and now I'm using everything--

all my passions arein this show.

So we're talking about golf.

I'm friends with gang members,

so I'm gonna show youthe human side of...

of... of the gangs.

I'm talkingabout Black Girl Magic.

I have a whole episodeabout that.

So I'm really justbreaking down things

that are nuancedwithin the hood,

and explaining itto the adjacent.

But, then,also talking about things

in the adjacent,or the mainstream,

and making them safe topicsfor the hood.

I want the hood to knowthey can go to the golf course.

You know? They can... they cango to a liberal arts college

-and... and enjoy themselves.-Right, right, right.

-(cheering, applause)-Nothing is off limits.

-Nothing's off limits.-Right.

That's exciting, man.I'm excited for you.

I saw you when you werejust kicking the show off.

I'm loving the episodes-- I hopeeverybody's gonna tune in.

Thank you for being here,my friend.

Hey, I appreciate it, man.

We're gonna workon that thing together.

Hood Adjacent airs Wednesdaysat 9:00 p.m. on Comedy Central.

James Davis, everybody!

All Shows