When Eddie Murphy received the Mark Twain Prize Sunday night, considered the top honor in American comedy, he didn't just say thank you. He did "something delightfully unexpected," notes Vulture—he told some jokes, specifically, some jokes about Bill Cosby, reports the AP. While that may seem fairly ordinary for a comedian, in this case it was the first time in 28 years that Murphy has done a comedy bit on stage, explains the Washington Post. “You may have heard recently that I allegedly put the pill in the people’s stomach," Murphy said in his classic Cosby voice. "If I ever see or meet this Hannibal Buress in person I am going to try and kill this man!" he added, referring to the comedian who brought renewed attention to the Cosby rape allegations.
He's "killing," Chris Rock observed back stage, per the Post, and it was no ad-lib: The newspaper reports that Murphy hatched the idea weeks ago and tried the brief set out on pals Rock and Arsenio Hall, who encouraged him to repeat it on stage. "[Eddie] said, ‘Because Cosby gonna get sick of this soon, he’s gonna get sick of people hating, and eventually he’s gonna have to say something,'" recalls Hall. "And we were like, ‘That is funny, man. Are you willing?'" He was, even though he passed on an offer to skewer Cosby at the recent SNL 40th anniversary show. Whether Murphy returns to stand-up on a more permanent basis is an open question. The show airs on PBS on Nov. 23. (Cosby actually applauded something Murphy did in February.)