It's going to be a big weekend for comedian Darryl Lenox: While he's in Minnesota, his debut hour-long special, Blind Ambition, will air on the Starz network on Saturday, with the accompanying CD of the same title (from Minneapolis's own Stand Up! Records) to be released on iTunes the following Tuesday. The title of the special is more than a play on words, it's a fairly literal description of the hardworking Lenox, who's already previously appeared multiple times on Comedy Central and BET; he spent much of his two-decade career in standup almost totally blind. A pair of recent surgeries boosted his visual acuity "and changed my life perspective as well," but Lenox notes that his ocular impairment did have its advantages. "I never had the insecurity of seeing somebody not liking what I did." Blind Ambition finds arch humor in his struggle, while his shows at the Joke Joint this week will feature material he's working on for his next hour-long show, which he describes as a kind of philosophical sequel to the one airing on Starz. "[A] doctor put an implant in my eye with a needle and thread," Lenox says, explaining that he elected to be awake for the surgery for fear of waking up with absolutely no sight. "When he started the doctor said, 'This is going to hurt, and I'm sorry'...and that's become my new mantra." Look for that idea to be fleshed out in Lenox's sharply written, thoughtful, and always unpredictable sets all weekend. With Tiffany Norton. 18+.
Nov. 8-10, 8 p.m.; Nov. 9-10, 10:30 p.m., 2012