Former Breaking Bad co-star Bill Burr didn’t have a meltdown on Conan last night, but he did ruffle a few feathers with his politically incorrect stance on the NFL’s breast cancer awareness effort and other topics pertaining to the league’s recent cornucopia of controversies. As a mostly filter-free comedian and a podcast host Burr pushes people’s buttons all the time and in his new FX pilot from It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia producers John and Dave Chernin, he’s going to play a celebrity who goes too far.
Pariah centers on volatile TV personality Joe Abbott (Burr) who, after an on-air meltdown, is exiled from show business and forced to navigate society as a man with no apparent skills.
I’m a big fan of Burr’s, but with the hypersensitive state of things, you have to figure that someone who is as unapologetic and bold as he is is going to eventually face the cultural firing squad, so this role almost sounds like a glimpse into his future. Perhaps that’s why this seems so perfect for Burr, who has mocked celebrity apology tours in the past and who also had a great take on celebrity scandals last night while on Conan when he weighed in on Paula Deen’s looming return to the good graces of the public.
“She’s on the internet so she’s back to Triple A. They busted her all the way down. Right? She was standing out in the street selling her rolls or whatever she was doing to make her mortgage. Now she’s inching her way back into the league. All she’s gotta do is go on the internet [and] not say anything racist for, I’m gonna say, like 6 months. You know? Not flip out on anybody and she’ll be right back on the Food Network. […] There’s always somebody else screwing up that gets knocked all the way down and then they get bumped up.”
While the very brief synopsis talks about Burr’s character’s struggle to “navigate society,” here’s hoping that Burr gets to work in his thoughts on the overall phenomena of celebrity scandal and the way that society reacts to these things, as well. Assuming that the show gets picked up by FX, of course.