UPDATE: We found a longer transcript of Kindler’s speech, posted below, and honestly, it sounds like kind of a non-story in context. But still worth it for the Hitler jokes!
Comedian and voice actor Andy Kindler gave a State of the Industry Address at the Just for Laughs Festival in Montreal over the weekend, and much like in his keynote address last year, he named names and busted balls. Last year the targets included Dane Cook, Jay Leno, Chelsea Handler, and interestingly, Louis CK, who’s as close to sacrosanct as it gets in the comedy world. According to Laughspin, last year’s Louis CK zings included:
“He’s not the greatest comic in the world” and “You’ll never hear the phrase ‘self-effacing’ in reference to Louis C.K.” and “There are more laughs in two minutes of Portlandia than there are in a half hour of Louie” and “Just because something is different doesn’t mean it’s the best show on television.”
Kindler apologized for appearing on Carolla’s podcast, and then dispensed the sharpest stake to the heart of zinging with this: “Adam Carolla is like Hitler if Hitler weren’t funny.” And before that, “he’s a bigot with a capital NAZI.”
[…] Kindler betrayed genuine disgust with Carolla’s largely acknowledged racism and sexism, and it didn’t seem there was a single voice of dissent in the packed house. […]
As always, the State of the Industry leaves a lot of room for improvement, but ya know Kindler is just kidding when he dismisses it all as a steaming pile of shit. Except for Carolla. There’s no hope of redemption for Carolla. In closing, Kindler offered this nugget of divine truth: “If you’re a comedian and you’re not saying anything funny, you’re just a racist.”
And here’s another account from Chortle:
Warming to his theme, he called Carolla a ‘muscle-headed hate bot’ […]
He also rubbished his nemesis’s defence that his offensive comments were ‘just a joke’ expected of a comedian, saying: ‘What would you know about comedy? You are not a comedian – comedians tell jokes.’
‘I hate these people who think they are stand-ups because they’ve done it a couple of times.’
He then when on a digression about Carolla’s forthcoming crowdfunded movie about the life of a road comic ‘as if he’d know’ and Ricky Gevais not earning his place alongside Chris Rock, Louis CK and Jerry Seinfeld on the Talking Funny discussion panel on the basis of four mediocre stand-up shows.
He then returned to the theme that Carolla was using comedy as a fig-leaf for unpleasant views by saying: ‘What Adam Carolla’s done, neo-Nazis should have thought of years ago.’
Now, I rarely trust other people’s reads of comedians’ intended sarcasm (especially ones like the writer of the Laughspin piece, who non-jokingly refers to Carolla as “a widely loathed symbol of comedy hack-dom at its hackiest”), but based on Kindler’s Twitter feed, it doesn’t seem like he was joking, or at least not that much. Or maybe it’s a bit and he’s trying to make a point about websites trying to gin up controversy, like Salon does with Patton Oswalt (which Kindler did mention in his speech)?
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve started fast-forwarded through Carolla’s political rants as much as anyone, but I’ll always love him for Loveline, and seriously calling him a racist seems a bit much. For one thing, it’s almost impossible to defend yourself when you’ve been called a racist. Everything you say just makes you sound more racist. “What? No, some of my best friends are blac– DAMMIT!”
So is this a bit or an honest beef? Hard to say at this point. For pageviews sake, I’ll say FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT! Nonetheless, I like Kindler and I like Carolla, who to my knowledge has never actually disenfranchised anyone, so a real beef would kind of bum me out. And as far as Carolla burns go, I thought this one Kindler retweeted was much funnier:
I have to spray my muscle-headed hate bot with Axe, or else he overheats around minorities.
“What do you gotta do to be a bigot these days?”
As for Carolla himself, he didn’t take the roasting to heart. In fact, he said he was “flattered” that anyone would burn so many calories even thinking about him.
Carolla told his podcast audience that some people simply wish to make others “conform” to groupthink. That pressure no longer applies to him now that he operates his own business by his own rules.
“You guys can all f*ck yourselves. I have a pirate ship,” he told his listeners without any sizable anger in his voice. “Say what you want. Lie. Do whatever you want. Blackball me. I’ll take my fans with me.”
UPDATE 2: Here’s a chunk of Kindler’s speech, which is in full over at The Comic’s Comic. It definitely sounds more like a roasty bit than a beef in context (mmm, roasty beef). Once again I blame myself for trusting other writers’ interpretations of a comedy performance.
“I’m going to say something here, and then I’m going to go back to the comedy. There’ll be comedy here…
I think P.T. Barnum said, ‘There’s an Adam Carolla fan born every minute.’ H.L. Mencken said, ‘No one in this world has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of Adam Carolla fans.’ I’d like to apologize to everybody here, and everybody in America for going on Adam Carolla’s terrible, terrible podcast. I really had no idea. I just thought he was The Man Show, and he was — I didn’t know he was a terrible human being. I thought he was slightly amusing and kidding around. I had no idea that he’s a bigot with a capital NAZI.
The first time I did his podcast, it took me an hour to get there. And he put me on for 10 minutes. He never makes eye contact. He’s incapable of it. But he’s always like, ‘Andy, please, take the gas money.’ He was, ‘Please, here’s some food, Andy.’ He’s such a good guy! The second time was at the Jon Lovitz Tragedy Club. When you think of people who were funny 20 years ago, who do you think of? Jon Lovitz. Don’t you? Pack ‘em in! By the way, you know a white person is leaning toward racism if they start all of a sudden complaining about how much taxes they pay under Obama. And that’s what Jon Lovitz has done, turned it into a pastime. Everybody’s racist is the point of this speech!
So I went to the Jon Lovitz Tragedy Club in Universal City. And, I mean, it’s not the worst comedy club in the world. It’s the worst enclosure ever planned. They called me, a couple of months after I did a set there, they said one of my jokes just hit the rafters. Which are infinity ceilings. So here’s what you do. You want to do Adam’s, Adam Carolla’s podcast? You go up to Universal City. You park in Curious George 4 or wherever you park there. Goofy 3. You pay $20 f*cking dollars. I don’t go blue. F*cking dollars. Freaking! You pay that. Then you take a four-mile hike over to the Lovitz comedy club, where all you’re thinking the whole time is, I will not be — they will not give me money for the valet, it’s not going to happen for the parking garage, I’m down $20 and I haven’t even started the podcast.
I didn’t know that I’d be on for the entire hour. And I didn’t know that Adam Carolla, he literally keeps you on for the entire hour, like you’re a plant. He doesn’t know what you’re saying. He doesn’t care. Nasally. Whiny. For an entire hour. It’s nonstop. He is raising money online right now!
By the way, anybody who goes on Celebrity Apprentice. You’ve got to either not know what’s going on, or you’ve got to be a racist. I’m just telling you. You’re all racists if you go on. He is raising money on Donald Trump’s Kickstarter thing. And it’s not money for him to have a comedy workshop, or for therapy to find out why he’s a jerk. He’s raising money for a movie called Road Hard. This is literally unbelievable. I think the name of the movie should be called Road Kill. Again. I apologize to the world for being in the same camera shot. Whatever. Just being next to Adam Carolla.
If Adam Carolla is an unfunny Hitler, and I’m just Hitler, I’m going to go ahead and take this as a compliment. “You Can Call Me Hitler” was always my favorite Paul Simon song.