Walking off the streets of New York and onto the stage sporting a Ladder 118 T-shirt in homage to his firefighter father Scott Matthew Davidson (who died in the 9/11 attacks), Pete Davidson seems like a pretty sensitive dude. Hell, his new Comedy Central special even boasts his dad's initials as its title — SMD. But from the moment the 22-year-old comedian opens his mouth, it's pretty clear that he's got the ruder, cruder meaning of "SMD" in mind.
Unsurprisingly, dick jokes abound over the next hour, with Davidson over-sharing stories about his masturbation habits, porn preferences and sending health-related dick pics to his school nurse mom. There are also plenty of ruminations on weed, whether he's talking about what he likes to do while smoking it (driving, watching Jaws) or detailing his trip to rehab in Utah to smoke it a little bit less (but never with any intention to quit), as well as a methodically planned-out and baby-proofed trip on shrooms and a particularly amusing encounter at a Justin Bieber concert.
His sex, drug and Biebs bits are funny enough, but the best moments of SMD are those that find Davidson going darker and more self-deprecating. He does an exquisite job of shitting all over his hometown of Staten Island in the introduction, then hilariously lambasts himself for being a loser in high school (complete with a backpack on wheels) and complains about the, uh, anatomical difficulties that have kicked in with his "old" age.
After making a couple references to not having a dad growing up, Davidson goes deeper and more uncomfortable on the special's title character at the very end of his set — switching to the topic of his dead dad with a casual: "Let's do some 9/11 jokes and get the fuck out of here." The crowd becomes audibly uncomfortable as he talks about the awesome Playstation 2 he got as a 7-year-old who couldn't really grasp what had happened to his dad, but warms up again as Davidson closes with SMD's namesake joke about reaping the benefits of getting his dad's initials tattooed.
A 22-year-old guy's obsession with his dick and drugs isn't anything new, but the pale, slouchy Saturday Night Live star has enough darkness brooding beneath the surface to keep intrigue up, and enough charisma and goofy charm to keep the laughs coming. (Comedy Central)