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Dearly Departed Chappelle

Comedy Central plans wake for show.

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Dave Chappelle is still very much alive, but since he’s on the lam from his TV show, Comedy Central plans to treat him as if he’d tragically expired. Last week, the network announced that it was going to stitch four new episodes of Chappelle’s Show out of the roughly 75 minutes of sketches completed before the star abruptly halted work on the series. But since Chappelle’s usual from-the-stage introductions to the skits were never filmed, the network is hoping to tributize them. “If Dave does not come back to do his normal intros, the goal is to get Chris Rock, Chris Tucker, Martin Lawrence, the biggest comedians, whatever, to do a wake for the show,” says a person familiar with the planning. “Dave’s missing; these are his last four remaining episodes. They’ll grieve and roast and toast. Those will be the new bumpers.” The source says that the new sketches—bits of which were shown Sunday on Comedy Central’s Last Laugh ’05—are “absolutely hysterical.” Standout skits include a werewolf bit and a parody of MTV’s Cribs in which Chappelle shows off an enormously gaudy Miami mansion while wearing a “400-pound fur coat.” A Comedy Central spokesman says, “I’ve heard the wake idea. I have not heard those specific names.”

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