Shawn Wayans is great. He’s great at writing, he’s great at acting, he’s great at being funny (as you’ll see at the Brea Improv this Thursday-Sunday), and he’s great at trivia. Wait. Scratch that last part. He’s decent at trivia. We learned that juicy tidbit when we put him up to the challenge of answering some simple questions about his own movie and one of our favorites, Don’t be Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood. Yeah, it’s been 20 years since it came out so we’ll cut him a little slack because we love him so much. Also, he clearly didn’t know who he was up against. And now he does.
OC Weekly (Ali Lerman): Thank you for doing this “Don’t be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood” trivia with me. It’s like, a dream of mine.
Shawn Wayans: Yeah, I know you. You’re adorable. I signed your DVD, I remember. You’re the “Don’t be a Menace girl.” That’s your name for now on from me. You’re the “Don’t be a Menace girl.”
I feel like that’s a compliment so I’m good with it. OK here we go. I’ll start easy since it’s been awhile. What is “one out of every ten black males forced to do in their lifetime?”
One out of every ten black males will be forced to watch a hood movie in their lifetime. The tragedy is, one out of five will be shot in the theater while watching that movie.
Yes! You’re spot on! Well done. Alright, when Dashiki tells Ashtray she’s writing poetry, what is the reason she gives him for writing it?
Ohh that is pretty vague and I know that scene, I just can’t remember it offhand. Ummm…let’s see, what are you doing? Writing poetry. [Laughs.] It helps to clear my mind and…something like that, right? I got that one wrong, huh?
Yeah, sorry. It actually helps her escape the harsh realities of living in the hood. Obviously.
Yeah! For that being twenty years ago, I was close. And I don’t even watch that movie.
You’re really missing out but don’t worry, I wear that movie out for you.
You must smoke weed and hang out with a lot of brothers. I’m trying to figure out how Don’t Be a Menace became your favorite movie. Did some brothers turn you on to it?
Ha!! Not even! You’ve got me pegged all wrong. When it came out, three of my white friends and I ditched school and went to see it in the theater. All whitey's.
Was it packed with a bunch of other kids who did the same thing?
We saw it in Costa Mesa so it was a pretty diverse crowd but yes, it was packed. A lot of hooting and hollering was going on in-between hits off joints. Ok, stop interviewing me. Back to you and your knowledge. What type of charge does being black on a Friday night bring?
Being black on a Friday will get you a night in jail. I had to spend the night with Farrakhanvict. One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish, knick knack paddy whack, give a dog a bone. Two thousand, zero, zero, party, oops! Out of time. My bacon smelling fine.
The charge is actually a misdemeanor for being black on a Friday but I’m going to accept that since you broke it down so perfectly. Alright, who is on “The Man’s” list?
Let’s see, that would be O.J., Tupac, Biggie…the man, the man. Oh shit, I know there was like four people on there but I forgot. Martin Luther King?
Haha no! "The Man" was a Biggie fan because he wasn’t on the list. It was actually Mike Tyson, Michael Jackson, O.J., Tupac, and Loc Dog. Ok last one. Who’s on the college shooters list?
[Laughs.] Awwww shit! I forgot that completely! All I know is Omar Epps’ character is on there.
That list was actually Ricky, Caine, Radio Raheem, and Malik. The best part of that list is it was labeled, “Brothers who are trying to make it out of the hood.” So god damn funny.
It’s been twenty years! You have the upper hand. I’m going to brush up though so the next time I talk to you, we’ll see who wins! I’m going to battle you! The next time we talk we’re gonna film it with a panel like a real battle. I feel like I was blindsided. [Laughs.]
Yes! Challenge accepted. I very much appreciate you playing along and since that was clearly just for me, let the good people of Brea know what you have in store for them.
Well it’s just me so you’ll get more time with me. I get to do more comedy whereas when I did it with Marlon, we had to cut our time down on stage. So now, you get to see the full hour or maybe hour and a half of me and my point of view.
You’re doing a bunch of road work, could there be a comedy special in your future? Say, soonish?
I’m working on it! I’d like to have it done say, soonish. It all depends though. I’m a perfectionist so I keep going until I have it right.
I’d even take an hour special with a bunch of people, a family affair if you will. I just saw Chaunte and she’s hilarious. You guys are all so talented it’s annoying.
[Laughs.] Well thank you my love! That is so kind. We shall see. In the meantime though, I’m going to brush up on Don’t be a Menace and try to beat you at my own movie.
Good luck, fam.
Check out Shawn Wayans at the Brea Improv August 11th through 14th, 120 South Brea Blvd. Brea, CA 92821. (714) 482-0700. For tickets go to www.Improv.com and for more info on Shawn, follow him on Twitter @Shawn_Wayans and become a fan on Facebook.