Chris Redd Advises Getting Punched in the Face to Juice Your Comedy Special
After an unsettlingly eventful year in the comedians getting physically assaulted department, Saturday Night Live alumnus Chris Redd has been able to make lemonade out of his getting-clocked-in-the-face-by-a-stranger lemons. Redd appeared on SiriusXM’s The Bennington Show to talk about the attack that left him bleeding all over the front step of the Comedy Cellar in New York City in October. He shared his belief that the attack was not a “random assault,” as some news outlets have reported, but that the unknown assailant, who spent an hour waiting for Redd’s arrival, had planned the act of aggression.
However, if the attacker was hoping to harm Redd’s career, the comedian was happy to report that the scheme backfired — because the incident coincided with the release of his HBO Max special, Chris Redd: Why Am I Like This?, the massive media coverage of the attack helped to boost Redd’s numbers and make the special a success. Redd said, ”No promotion was better than getting knocked in the f—ing face.”
Redd joked to Ron Bennington that, “People didn’t even know I had a special out. And they were like, ‘Oh, hope he’s okay. What? Special?' It did wonders for me!” Why Am I Like This? was well-received, even though most of the publicity surrounding the former SNL star in the weeks following the release focused on the attack that landed Redd in the hospital and canceled his gigs leading up to the special’s launch.
Though Redd laughed at the incident’s silver lining, he hasn’t found closure in the months following the attack because the assailant has still not yet been identified. Redd believes that there was motivation behind the assault, saying, “People called it ‘a random attack.’ I don’t believe that. I watched the footage, he waited for me for an hour before I got there. He was on the phone, he had a lookout dude and everything.
“All I’m saying is this: I’ve never done nothing random where it took me an hour to do it. I’ve never just randomly did a thing that took a build-up. That’s not what random is.” The comedian also called the attack “a planned situation.”
Redd expressed his dissatisfaction with the progress — or lack thereof — that the NYPD has made in identifying his attacker. Redd claimed that the communication with law enforcement has been unsatisfactory, saying, “I got ghosted by the chief of police!”
If the NYPD ever catches the attacker, Redd might be able to elucidate the motive behind the assault and finally put the issue to rest. He’ll also be able to “thank” the assailant for the “free” publicity during Rikers Island visiting hours.