Def Comedy Jam: Episodes 1 & 2 and Episodes 3 & 4 – DVD Review

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Stan Lathan


Mike Epps ………. Himself
Russell Simmons ………. Himself
Vince Morris ………. Himself
Adele Givens ………. Herself
Earthquake ………. Himself
Tony Rock ………. Himself
Capone ………. Himself
Sommore ………. Herself
Tony Roberts ………. Himself
Dominique ………. Herself
Jay Phillips ………. Himself
Kevin Hart ………. Himself
Melanie Comarcho ………. Herself
Katt Williams ………. Himself

The Show

Russell Simmons is a legendary hip-hop entrepreneur. He pioneered his own record label called Def Jam back in the 1980’s. From there he went on to develop his own clothing line in Phat Farm, magazine, movie production house, advertising agency, and television shows including Def Comedy Jam. From 1992-1997 Def Comedy Jam was the crown jewel of the late night HBO lineup and the place to showcase up-and-coming urban comedians. In 2006, Def Comedy Jam returned to HBO with a new host and a fresh lineup of comedians.

Over the years, Def Comedy Jam has helped launched the careers of Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock, Jamie Foxx, Cedric the Entertainer, Steve Harvey, Bernie Mac, Chris Tucker, and D.L. Hughley just to name a few. It was first hosted by Martin Lawrence; this time around the host is Mike Epps and it has the same look and feel as the early days of Def Comedy Jam. The comedians featured on the first four episodes of this version are a mix of familiar faces and not so familiar faces. Some of these comedians you will know from other shows, while others you may never have heard of. They all bring their own style of comedy to you.

Mike Epps was an excellent choice to be the host of this new Def Comedy Jam series. He is completely crazy, and you will be laughing at him before the featured comedians even get on the stage. That is what makes a good host for this show. Martin Lawrence set the bar and Mike Epps easily leaps up to that bar.

Without a doubt, the funniest comedian on the first four episodes is Katt Williams. He is most famous as being “Money Mike” in Friday After Next with Ice Cube and Mike Epps. But many people may know him better now as part of Nick Cannon’s Wild N’ Out show on MTV. He is the next breakout urban comedian and he shows why here. Other standouts include Kevin Hart, Earthquake, and Vince Morris. They are all pretty unique from one another and stand out. The others run together at times as they tell the same kind of jokes in the same kind of way. Overall, though, it’s all mostly funny.

If you want a sampling of some of the best from the next generation of urban comedians, then there is no better place to look than Def Comedy Jam. For 15 years, it has been the place to see the stars of tomorrow. On these two DVDs, you get some great comedy that hits more than it misses. Sure, there are times where the jokes seem old and tired, but there are more times where you will be laughing out of your seat. Don’t miss out on the return of a comedy showcase like Def Comedy Jam.


Episode 1:

Performances By:
– Vince Morris
– Adele Givens
– Earthquake

Episode 2:

Performances By:
– Tony Rock
– Capone
– Sommore

Episode 3:

Performances By:
– Tony Roberts
– Dominique
– Jay Phillips

Episode 4:

Performances By:
– Kevin Hart
– Melanie Comarcho
– Katt Williams

The Video:

The video is given in widescreen color with an aspect ratio of 16:9. Transfer is decent with minimal distortion. The colors look bright. Good enough to serve its purpose.

The Audio:

The audio included is in English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo sound. No problems here either. The comedians are crisply and clearly heard, which is all you need to have for a show like this.

The Extras:

There are no special features on any of these two DVDs. I wouldn’t have expected much from an HBO comedy series, so not a major disappointment. They could have put something about the history of the show on here, but I’m sure there are other DVDs about that anyways.


If you like urban comedy, I recommend renting either of these DVDs. I don’t think I can recommend buying this if you are only a fan of one person from any of these two DVDs, since you only get about ten minutes of each comedian. But as a whole, the comedy is pretty solid and any fan of the original Def Comedy Jam from the 90’s will want to check out this version.

The DVD Lounge’s Ratings for Def Comedy Jam – Episodes 1 & 2 and 3 & 4
(OUT OF 10)