By Chloe Aiello

Dane Cook may be returning to the comedy stage on Thursday for his first real tour since 2013, but don't call it a comeback.

"I didn't stop doing stand up comedy, you know. If I had become like a carpenter and put the mic down five years ago, I'd be like, 'This is a comeback!' But I've been just doing shows and still doing tour dates," Cook told Cheddar.

Cook hit peak fame back in the mid-2000s when his meteoric rise scored him starring roles in comedy films like "Good Luck Chuck" and "Employee of the Month." None of his films were particularly well-reviewed, and Cook's spotlight further faded after a series of personal struggles, including the embezzlement of millions of his dollars by his half brother, and professional stumbles, including some insensitive remarks the Aurora, Colo., movie theater shooting. And even in his heyday, Cook collected a devoted group of haters, including now-disgraced comedian Louis C.K., who previously accused Cook of stealing his jokes.

But Cook, it seems, is fixing his gaze on the future; he said he's moved beyond his conflict with C.K., and "it's in my rearview mirror."

"If you look at the comedians that have stood the test of time, in order to get to that pedigree, I feel like you have to go through the experiences, the high highs and the low lows," he said. "It's a humbling experience."

Accordingly, fans should expect a different Cook to take the stage on Feb. 21 in Huntington, N.Y., when he kicks off his tour.

His material has evolved ー and now incorporates some of his darker experiences.

"There's actually probably more stuff from my personal life now than even ever before," Cook said. "So many random, wild things have happened to me that I finally just started saying I think people wouldn't even believe that I went through this particular incident."

Cook said one of his current jokes concerns an experience he had with a stalker. He joked she was "my first stalker, it was exciting," clarifying, "trust me, it's scary."

"To be able to talk about something like that and find the humor in things that are caustic and in sharp edges, I love that. That's kind of the sweet spot," he said.

For full interview click here.