Eddie Murphy Delirious

Eddie Murphy Delirious is an American stand-up comedy television special directed by Bruce Gowers, written by and starring Eddie Murphy.[1] The stand-up set became a TV Special for HBO on August 17, 1983. The 70-minute special was Murphy's first feature stand-up and the predecessor to the wide theatrical release in 1987, Eddie Murphy Raw. Delirious was also released as an album on October 24, 1983, titled Eddie Murphy: Comedian, which won Best Comedy Album at the 1984 Grammy Awards.

Eddie Murphy Delirious
Eddie murphy delirious.JPG
GenreStand-up comedy
Written byEddie Murphy
Directed byBruce Gowers
StarringEddie Murphy
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
ProducersEddie Murphy
Robert Wachs
Richard Tienken
CinematographyJuan Barrera
Grek Cook
Sam Drummy
Les Leibowitz
Mike Lieberman
Jake Ostroff
Ken Patterson
Joel Gold
EditorsKen Denisoff
Dave Barr
Running time69 minutes
Production companyEddie Murphy Productions
DistributorParamount Pictures
Original networkHBO
Original releaseAugust 17, 1983 (1983-08-17)


Unlike his acts on Saturday Night Live, Murphy's performance was very profane, saying the word fuck a total of 230 times, and shit 171 times.[2]

The show was recorded at DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C.[3]

Before the show started, The BusBoys performed "(The Boys Are) Back in Town" over a montage of pre-show footage of Murphy traveling with his road crew. Then, he is introduced after the song and thanks The BusBoys for the opening act before starting his comedy routine.

Among the topics Murphy addresses is the lure ice cream trucks have on children. Once the ice cream was bought, they would sing and dance mockingly in front of kids who could not afford it.[4] Other topics that he addresses are family parties (his cookout skit featuring a humanoid cryptid for an aunt-in-law and an uncle who ignites the whole backyard in an attempt to work the grill) parental discipline (his shoe-throwing mothers monologue), Michael Jackson, James Brown, Stevie Wonder, racism, Reaganomics, gay people, (including a routine depicting "The Honeymooners" Ralph Kramden and Ed Norton as same-sex sweethearts), AIDS, and Marian Anderson. After his routine, the video ends with Murphy and his road crew walking to his dressing room while the credits roll.


The special received positive reviews and is widely cited by comedians as a seminal stand-up work.[5][6][7][8] The review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes gave it an 83% approval rating based on 6 reviews, with an average rating of 7.5/10.[9] However, it was criticised for being anti-gay.[10][11][12]

"When I did Delirious," Murphy reflected in 1989, "I got all this flak for my material being so filthy. The truth is, it's nowhere near as filthy as some of the stuff they're doing now. I'm feeling like a fucking old guy watching Sam Kinison or Andrew Dice Clay."[13]

One of the topics that Murphy addresses in Delirious is homosexuality, and using the homophobic slur "faggot".[14] However, in 1996, he released a one-page statement apologizing for his use of that slur, saying: "I deeply regret any pain all this has caused."[15]

Home videoEdit

In June 2009, a 25th Anniversary Edition was released.[16][17]


  1. ^ Eddie Murphy: Delirious, retrieved 2020-01-05
  2. ^ Swindoll, Jeff (June 2, 2009). "Eddie Murphy: Delirious - 25th Anniversary – DVD Review". Monsters and Critics. Archived from the original on December 21, 2012. Retrieved July 10, 2010.
  3. ^ "They played here". Washington Post. February 26, 2015.
  4. ^ Paskin, Willa (September 8, 2011). "Nostalgia Fact-Check: How Do Eddie Murphy's Delirious and Raw Hold Up?". Vulture. New York City: New York Media. Retrieved November 2, 2013.
  5. ^ Edgerton, Gary R.; Jones, Jeffrey P. (2013). The Essential HBO Reader. University Press of Kentucky. ISBN 978-0813143729. Retrieved July 12, 2017 – via Google Books.
  6. ^ Lee, Chris (June 15, 2009). "A 'Delirious' comedy turning point". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  7. ^ Benedictus, Leo (October 11, 2012). "Comedy gold: Eddie Murphy's Delirious". The Guardian. Guardian News and Media. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  8. ^ Tobias, Scott; Ciabattoni, Steve; Murray, Noel; Love, Matthew; Grierson, Tim; Fear, David (July 29, 2015). "Divine Comedy: 25 Best Stand-Up Specials and Movies". Rolling Stone. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  9. ^ "Eddie Murphy Delirious (1983)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved April 18, 2018.
  10. ^ Duffy, Nick (December 29, 2016). "Eddie Murphy's anti-gay comedy special resurfaces on Netflix". PinkNews. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  11. ^ Murray, Noel (February 27, 2007). "Delirious / Know Your History". The A.V. Club. The Onion. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  12. ^ Tucker, Ken (February 7, 2007). "Eddie Murphy Delirious". Entertainment Weekly. Time. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  13. ^ Zehme, Bill (August 24, 1989). "Eddie Murphy: Call Him Money". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 18 April 2018.
  14. ^ "Eddie Murphy's Homophobic Comedy Special 'Delirious' is Now Streaming on Netflix". The Good Men Project. January 5, 2017. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  15. ^ Rubin, Sylvia (May 11, 1996). "PAGE ONE -- After 15 Years, Actor Apologizes For Gay Slurs". San Francisco Chronicle. San Francisco, California: Hearst Communications. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  16. ^ Musgrove, James (May 27, 2009). "Eddie Murphy: Delirious (25th Anniversary Edition) DVD Review". IGN. Ziff Davis. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  17. ^ Rich, Jamie S. (February 10, 2007). "Eddie Murphy - Delirious". DVD Talk. Retrieved July 12, 2017.

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