Just last year Forbes announced that, for the first time since keeping track, Jerry Seinfeld was dethroned as comedy cash king after Kevin Hart pulled in $87.5 million in 2016—over $30 million more than Seinfeld’s $43.5 million.
The feat was so notable it also earned Hart sixth place on the Celebrity 100, Forbes’ annual list of celebrity money-makers that year. A large part was due to Hart playing over 100 shows with an average gross of over $1 million at each stop, a feat no other comedian was doing.
But last year barely begins to speak to his success.
Since beginning comedy in his hometown of Philly, Kevin has managed to make himself into a television, movie, stand-up, and even part-time musical star. He has five stand-up specials, has been in a movie every year since 2002, and has even written a book.
Kev’s come-up story resonated with people for two reasons: firstly his dominance. Eddie Murphy is the most recent comedian that comes to mind in terms of an individual who occupied as many media spaces. Secondly, it’s because Kevin has a unique likability.
Kevin Hart’s self-deprecating humor that makes light of his height, raising his children, and family woes makes him feel like a relative, not to mention how relatable he is on live television.
On top of all of the good content he constantly puts out, he’s also made himself a beacon of inspiration.
His Snapchat displays his coined “hustle Hart” lifestyle, running from one shoot to another. His Instagram exudes examples of fatherhood, family, and servitude.
In every interview, he drops gems on helping others get to where they want to go in life.
He’s one of the hardest workers in Hollywood and it shows.
For all intensive purposes, Kevin Hart is good.
Just not good enough.
Although questionable, the pictures can easily be taken out of context and they were dismissed after Kevin responded with this Instagram post.
He played off the rumors with this meme
Fast forward to yesterday and Hart, again, found himself in the midst of infidelity rumors thanks to a video obtained by TMZ.
Here’s the extortion video:
And again, Kev took to IG to address to allegations, but this time did not keep the same energy.
And when you watch the video you’d see why. Whoever this individual is clearly is not playing games and they have some concrete dirt.
This time there weren’t pictures or videos, just words threatening to release sensitive information about the comedian unless money is paid.
Using past interviews audio as a backdrop — which cleverly included snippets of Kev blaming infidelities with his first wife on maturity and where he admitted that chasing physical attributes is an endless game — the video has a typed out message with demands.
TMZ reported the FBI is on the hunt for the extortionist and they have a suspect but it’s unclear if the suspect is the woman pictured with Kevin or someone else who may have captured the bedroom scene with an iPhone.
The extortionist’s latest demands are in the millions.
As you can imagine, Twitter is weighing in on the scandal.
Looking under the Kevin Hart hash tag like … pic.twitter.com/aHiupyi5f5
— xoNecole (@xonecole) September 17, 2017
You know how you know fame is trash? Kevin Hart has to apologize to his wife and kids in front of a bunch of strangers about infidelity.
— Kazeem Famuyide (@RealLifeKaz) September 18, 2017
KEVIN HART! pic.twitter.com/HSIbRt5XXY
— Darren Fleet (@FleetDarren) September 18, 2017
So where do we go from here? No, we do not know the specifics of what happened or what exactly Kevin Hart is apologizing for, but Kevin Hart did not live up to the public’s expectations.
Besides, one of the pitfalls of fame is being publicly responsible to your constituents, even with private matters not concerning them.
The lesson here is that good is not good enough. It never is. Re: Bill Cosby, Nate Parker, Michael Jackson, Kodak Black, Chris Brown or whoever has done anything immoral and ethically wrong.
It’s not about justifying these men’s actions or what they did or did not do, it’s about the initial cloak of immortality that we love to place on their backs before disappointingly finding out that they, too, bleed.
We can only be outraged and ready to stop giving Kevin our money if he took vows to us and promised us his unwavering loyalty.
Anything else is an overreaction to an expectation we shouldn’t have had (also Hart’s transgressions do not compare to these other men’s alleged abuse towards women).
Just this past August when Hurricane Harvey hit Houston Kevin was one of the main celebrities of influence who took charge. Not only did he call out his peers but he donated $25,00 himself.
In an era where your grandma can slip and say something flagrantly offensive to someone somewhere, it makes sense why Kevin Hart would catch heat for cheating on his wife who literally just gave birth to his newest child.
However, what I won’t do is say Kevin Hart isn’t good. He’s not good enough, maybe no one ever will be, but he’s good enough in my book.