Sick & Tired

by: Wanda Sykes

Since her acting and writing have proved she's more versatile than her standup lets on, it's a shame Wanda Sykes' CD debut is like so many other recent standup albums, simply ripping the audio from a DVD that shares its title. Something new -- a skit or two, something that respects the comedy album's long history -- would have been nice, but seeing as how there's no Sykes on record otherwise, it's hard not to call Sick & Tired a must for fans. That is, for fans of her very adult material, since families who gathered every Friday to watch her Wanda at Large TV program need to be warned that this gets rough. If there's a big benefit for releasing your debut after years on the stage, it's how comfortable Sykes sounds in front of her audience. She's relaxed, in control, and charmingly appreciative of anyone who paid to see her, which makes her bold, cocky, and sometimes downright mean material all that much easier to take. Matter-of-fact observations like "if you don't believe in gay marriage, don't marry anyone of the same sex" fill the album, yet there's still room for some deeper material, like when Wanda "does it" to the Bush Jr. administration on the great "Arrogant." A couple of visual jokes could have been edited out; otherwise, this is a satisfying presentation of this hilarious and gruff comedy diva. ~ David Jeffries

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