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  • Back From Hell: A Tribute to Sam Kinison

    Posted in: Disc Reviews by Archive Authors on November 22nd, 2010

    (out of 5)

    Dear Faithful Readers, Due to the nature of Sam Kinison’s work on stage and off stage, this review may contain foul but funny humor, bad but heeeeelarious language, and not so politically correct (but correctly off the wall) jokes. Please be aware before you continue to read. Yours Always, Noms

    *Yells into a microphone* NOW LET’S GET THIS PARTY STARTED! Oooooooo owwww owww owwwwwwww! For those of you who don’t know, Sam used to be a preacher. No, I am not a liar dangit, look it up! But after his divorce with his first lousy skeeze who broke his heart into a billion pieces, I mean *cough* wife… he left that behind and became a comedian. And not just any comedian, an effin legendary comedian. It is just sad that his life was cut short, and not because of drugs or alcohol that HE used (which everyone and their mothers swore was gonna be the cause some day) but due to a drunk driving, 17 year old, kid. The world works in mysterious ways.

    This is by all means a tribute disc. It feels very much like an extras disc that should be included with a disc set of his earlier work. You have a bunch of classic comedians commenting and telling stories about how they knew Sam or good times with him. I love the fact that Dennis Leary came on here. I love that man, and to hear him speak about Sam in such an awe struck fashion is amazing. You are also in for a treat to hear from Lewis Black, Chris Rock, and Ron White. You will also see bits from Jay Leno (who made a bad attempt at Sam’s scream, but at least he admits that he can’t do it.), Ice T (who I love and its funny to hear him speak about the bit where Sam says that there should be a serial killer who kills rappers), and Pauly Shore (not like Pauly is up to much these days).

    “YOU! Come here! Yeah you! You see what this is here? Yeah! This is sand! Yeah! You know what it’s going to be in a hundred years?! SAND!!!” I LOVE this bit. He took something as serious as world hunger, and said what a lot of people were thinking then. They are starving, cause they are somewhere that they cannot grow food, here is a U-Haul and move somewhere that they can find food. But he did it in such a way where people knew what he was saying and agreed and got it. But they could not help but laugh because someone actually had the balls to say what they were thinking. He could pull it off, and he did it well.

    “Has anybody here every REALLY been betrayed or hurt by a woman? Ever have someone just rip your heart out? Oh yeah? What’s her name? GET THE PHONE!!!!! WE ARE GONNA CALL HER!” If you do not know about this bit, you are about to. He picked a man out of the audience and called a woman from this man’s past, and cussed her out for whatever she did to wrong this man. He told the man he picked to channel his “Inner Kinison” and let this woman have it. Only back in that day were you gonna get away with that, but I am glad they did. It made for some awesome and hilarious comedy bits. He let out all his anger towards women at this woman.

    Anyone not familiar with Sam Kinison need to get acquainted with his old stand up shows. He is a legend in the comedy world. If you think you want to be a comedian, you need to know the greats, Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy (back in the day, Disney has his balls nowadays), Rodney Dangerfield, Robin Williams, Dennis Leary, and Sam Kinison. This would be a good starting point if you don’t know anything about him. You hear alot of stories and information about him. The speakers on this disc are excellent. Have a sense of humor and at least rent it.

    Sam, we bow to your greatness, you freaking legend. Keep a spot in hell warm for me.


    The video is in 1.78:1 widescreen presentation. Since this presentation switches between interviews and archival footage of Sam, it varies in quality. The interviews are pretty decent and standard fare. The footage is a bit rough, showing a ton of pixelation and other terrible things associated with age and poor storage. It is watchable, just a little part of this reviewer wish it was cleaned up some.


    For the audio portion, we get a 5.1 Dolby Digital English Track (2.0 Mix Included). The audio is similar to the video in that the quality does vary some from interviews to archival footage, but these are a lot closer to each other. Neither source uses the 5.1 format since this is all dialog (except for the occasional musical interlude) but it is clear which means you won’t miss a punchline. No subtitles are included that I could find.

    Special Features

    Stories from The Comedy Store: Bill Kinison, Craig Gass, Pauly Shore, and Marc Maron speaking about Sam Kinison at The Comedy Store.

    Music: A live performance of him doing his version of Wild Thing, and also the video he did. Pretty funny video, I like the fact that they gave Slash a guitar he could not break. (and Jessica Hahn is hawt! – Michael)

    Additional Stand-Up: Old footage of some of his stand up bits. Heeeeelarious stuff on here.

    Final Comments

    His stand up was amazingly funny, but real. Something that alot of comics these days cannot say for themselves. You knew when he started yelling about some “woman” that he was letting out all the anger he had for a woman who tore out his heart. He got up on stage and let everyone and everything have it. Loud does not even begin to cover it. His scream is still imitated to this day, but never comes close. He is a legend in the Comedy business, and an inspiration to alot of the comics we see today. Easily offended? Don’t care much for swearing? Not into real comedy about real issues? Then you probably have no sense of humor… Put this DVD down, and walk away back to your very boring life. For those of you whose head is not in the clouds or elsewhere, pick this up, put it in your DVD player, relax, and have some really awesome laughs.

    Posted In: 2.35:1 Widescreen, Comedy, Comedy Central, Disc Reviews, Dolby Digital 2.0 (English), Dolby Digital 5.1 (English), DVD, Mature

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