March 9, 2009

Comedy What of Who?

We died a little inside upon our first viewing of commercials for "Comedy Central Presents the Friar's Club Roast of Larry the Fuck-wad." We find it unacceptable that someone should base a career on not only making people comfortable in their ignorance and crassness, but actually reveling in his own redneck-ness. At least Jeff Foxworthy was tongue-in-cheek about it. However: shortly after we finished wondering "who is Lisa Lampanelli and why must the Friar's Club constantly remind us that she is old, fat, and has sex with a lot of black men?" we had a revelation that mildly alleviated our dismay and dissapointment. Most of these roasts select as their subjects celebrities who were prominent at one point but reached their peak in the distant past. (Bob Saget and Bill Shatner would be the two most appropriate examples, but this principle applies to all the other participants. Jeff Foxworthy, Larry's mildly better half, was roasted long after everyone stopped parroting "you might be a redneck" jokes.) Since Larry has never approached superstardom, emerged from his own b-movie quagmire, or even transcended riding Foxworthy's coattails, we can only assume that this roast will shift the balance between honoring and ridiculing the roastee far in the direction of the latter. That's at least what we'll tell ourselves to get to sleep at night.