The Greatest Comedian of All Time, According to Heavyweight Champ Mike Tyson

Tommy Davidson says it’s Richard Pryor, but Iron Mike begs to differ
The Greatest Comedian of All Time, According to Heavyweight Champ Mike Tyson

Who’s the heavyweight champion of hilarity? We can't think of anyone better to bestow the belt than former boxing champ Mike Tyson. On this week’s Hotboxin’ with Mike Tyson podcast, Iron Mike sat down with In Living Color’s Tommy Davidson to fight it out. 

Podcast co-host DJ Whoo Kid asked Davidson a number of questions about comedians. Who was the craziest cast member on In Living Color? Was it Jamie Foxx? Nope, replied Davidson, “I think the crazy one was really Jim Carrey. He'll show you how far you can go with something. Nobody used to like to do sketches with him because he stayed there for hours.”

Davidson does a hilarious imitation of Carrey doing a simple fall, then spasming on the ground endlessly until the director had to beg him to stop. “He keeps doing it,” remembers Davidson, “and everybody’s dying. That’s commitment.”

OK, continues DJ Whoo Kid. Who was Davidson’s biggest comedy influence? “With comedy, it was (Richard) Pryor,” Davidson says. “Pryor was the one because he had the versatility. He can do characters and he can talk about things without you knowing he's talking about it. He can talk about racism, he could talk about sexism, but he puts it in such a comedy context you can't tell what you're getting until later when you start thinking about it.”

Sure, sure, Pryor’s great, but Tyson has to interrupt Davidson’s praise here. “I think Eddie’s the greatest,” says the champ, referring to stand-up icon Murphy. “He was the greatest. In his day, he was the greatest.”

Davidson wishes Murphy would stake the stage “because he’s one of the best. Eddie’s got to do stand-up again. He’s naturally funny.”

There are a lot of great acts out there now, says Tyson, but if Murphy would return to stand-up, “the greatest comedians in the world will be right there staring at him.” Davidson agrees. “They’re waiting on him.”

It's hard to argue with Tyson (not to mention stupid), but the conversation takes a weird turn later in the podcast when Iron Mike says that not only is Murphy the greatest comic, but “Eddie has good music out too. I heard it in Dubai.”

Davidson was dubious. “I got to hear that to believe that.”

“Well,” says Tyson, “they told me it was Eddie Murphy.”

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