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Bill Hicks and America

Bill Hicks and America

A documentary I’ve been following for over a year now, is Matt Harlock and Paul Thomas’ American: The Bill Hicks Story. The film screens at the Sheffield Doc/Fest this weekend, and I’m excited to scope it out. Bill Hicks, like Outlaw Country music, is one of those things that Brits and Texans have in common. Hicks, who died of pancreatic cancer in 1994, was an underground sensation in the comedy clubs of central Texas. He was smart, abrasive, political, and hysterical. Bill Hicks was the original Lewis Black or David Cross, and he was more than just an inspiration to Denis Leary (who is believed to have stolen chunks of Hicks material for his own No Cure For Cancer album). Hicks was a popular guest on David Letterman’s NBC show, and made the usual TV rounds, but his real success came in the UK. You mention Bill Hicks’ name in America, maybe 1 out of every 10 people know who you’re talking about. In the UK, it’s more like 7/10. In honor of Hicks, and the latest episode of Mad Men, here is one of his popular (and relatively less offensive) subjects: the JFK assassination…

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