TMZ - TMZ obtained this insane video of what we're told was a small comedy show Tuesday night on a rooftop bar in Hollywood, and [Mike Tyson] was in attendance with a few friends.
At first you see Mike seated calmly at his front row table taking in the show -- but the whole thing was interrupted by a random guy who approached Mike and co. and attempted to chat him up, disrupting a comedian's set and everyone's good time. ...
[E]yewitnesses tell us the man was actually challenging Mike to a fight -- suggesting he wanted to elevate his "status." ...
Eventually, though, another man intervenes and tells the dude to scram. We're told this was actually the host/MC of the night.
That pissed off the guy challenging Mike ... who threatened to shoot the host, and then pulled out a gun from his waistband and cocked it in front of everyone. Naturally, everyone gasped and started ducking under tables. ...
Mike just sat there in relative silence, heard the guy out and in the end, embraced him.
Mike actually hugged the man, at which point he finally left without further incident.
First of all, let's give all the credit in the world to whoever the emcee of this show was who chose to engage with an obviously unhinged individual with crippling anger management issues waving a peacekeeper around in a crowded bar. Not to mention a death wish, given he tried to pick a fight with Iron Mike. I've hosted more comedy shows than I can possibly count. And while I've worked with literally hundreds of really great comics, never once did I feel like it was my duty to stare down the barrel of a roscoe for one. I'll do my best to get the audience to keep their table talk down to a minimum and put their phones on silent ring. But draw the line at taking a bullet for the couple of hundred bucks I'm making. So kudos to this comic. Get this guy a Netflix special already.
More to the point though, is there another celebrity like Mike Tyson? Has their ever been? I used to believe that there was never a famous person in our culture who turned his public image around the way George Foreman did. From silent, stone-faced assassin who could kill an opponent with his lethal stare as well as his fists, to America's affable, lovable old grandpa, with the line of kitchen appliances and pack of sons named George, seemingly overnight.
But Tyson's persona has done an even bigger 180. A generation ago, he was the symbol for sadistic aggression, misogyny and domestic violence. Now he's a national treasure. George Foreman the Next Generation. Doing stunt casting appearances in comedies and action movies, doing commercials and talk shows. And just generally being the polar opposite of the guy who did hard time in prison all those years ago.
Now such is the power of Tyson's charms, he can defuse a dangerous situation that could've gone really bad, really fast. You can see everyone in the club tense up when he invited the guy with the gun over to his table when they had him so close to leaving. But by the time they hug it out, it's like he could've told this nut to hand over the weapon, go down to the nearest soup kitchen and start feeding the poor and the guy would've done exactly that. Incredible.
The NRA people are fond of saying "To stop a bad man with a gun, it takes a good man with a gun." But to that we can add, "it just takes Mike Tyson."
P.S. I'll say again what I've said before: I miss "Mike Tyson Mysteries." But without Norm MacDonald, it just would never be the same.
RIP, Norm. And thanks, Mike.