Bernie Mac was money in the 90’s. You could count on him to deliver, whether it was 7 seconds, or 7 minutes. People say “there are no small roles” but he proved it. From “Friday” to “Get on the Bus” he was usually the most memorable part of a film. Whenever I am auditioning to play “thug #2” for a home invasion commercial, I always think about Bernard Jeffrey “Bernie” McCullough from Chicago. “What would bernie do?” He’s an influence to every Chicago comedian who you enjoy today, regardless of race.
Truth be told, he was a star from the moment we first saw him on Def Comedy Jam in 1992, but for whatever reasons, it takes a little bit longer for us with that hue to break through. He didn’t give up, or complain, he just kept being funny. Even as health issues started to accelerate, he still was showing up to set, finally enjoying all the fruits of over 3o years in the game. I love the example he set. Here’s some homage to the best to ever do it.
(This was supposed to be a top 5 list, but Bernie Mac is just too important for such a small shout out. This
ranking of all his appearances, according to a true motherf****ng fan of his.)
1-AAA) Def Comedy Jam (TV Series) Himself (1992)
This performance needs its own grade. A aint high enough. #1 aint high enough. As the legend goes, the guy right before Bernie had BOMBED. So “I aint afraid of you motherfuckas” was improved. How ballsy is that? He TOLD New York what they werent gonna do to him. Thats why hes the best to ever do it.