There’s nothing like standup comedy. It’s dirty and it’s raw. And best of all—it’s unpredictable. When you go see a comedian live, you never know if someone from the crowd is going to chime in and try to steal the guy’s thunder. And no one’s immune. Not even the most famous comedians. Here are a few funny men and how they handle the wild cards in the crowd.
1. Bill Maher does his own dirty work
On his live show, Real Time with Bill Maher, Bill’s audience basically revolts. It all starts when one heckler gets loud and Bill decides to get his hands dirty. He takes off into the crowd and makes sure the guy gets thrown out on his butt. As ballsy of a move at is, it turns out to be a bad one when it sets off a chain reaction of hecklers. One after another. Most notable, perhaps, is the guy making really loud “MOOOOOO” sounds.
2. Jamie Kennedy serves a waitress
During his standup routine, Jamie Kennedy is trying to tell a story about a waitress when a girl corrects him by screaming “SERVER!” How petty. Anyway, he proceeds to demean her while the whole crowd laughs at her expense. And I can’t say she didn’t deserve it.
3. Kevin Smith’s question and answer session gets personal
Kevin Smith is nice enough to take questions from the audience. What a guy. Well on this particular night, a man in the audience uses the opportunity to basically ask him when he’ll make a good movie that doesn’t rip off all his old ones. Too make a long story short, Kevin tells him “as soon as I take my **** out of your mother’s ***.”
4. David Cross sells his books wherever he wants
At the Atlanta stop on the tour supporting his new book, I Drink for a Reason, an audience member asks David Cross why he supports Barnes and Noble by allowing them to sell his book. David responds with a verbose reply, and ends it calmly with “oh and also… **** you.” Intelligent comedy at its best.
5. Zach Galifianakis lets them speak
When a girl in the audience speaks out, Zach Galifianakis invites her to talk on the mic. Of course he orchestrates the conversation and instead of getting angry, turns it in to part of his act. He has the crowd rolling and eventually sends her back to her seat laughing.
6. Michael Richards flushes his career down the toilet
Life after Seinfeld hasn’t brought much success to anyone but Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David. Michael Richards, AKA Kramer, tried to keep things alive by making the stand up rounds. Perhaps the pressure just got to him. Or maybe he’s just a vile bigot. Either way, Richards unloads on an African American heckler with a maniacal tirade peppered with N-bombs. If his career wasn’t dead already, it sure as hell is now.
7. Bill Clinton teaches manners
I know, I know. Bill Clinton isn’t a comedian, right? Well, technically you’re right. However, whether you love him or hate him, you can’t deny that he’s a funny guy. In fact he might be the funniest, most entertaining president the U.S. has ever had. So with that in mind, we’ve made a small exception. Anyway, Clinton is delivering a campaign speech. Some guy interrupts him and subsequently ticks him off. So what does Clinton do? He calls him out and explains what “courtesy” means. Schooled. It’s awesome.
8. Jimmy Merrit will steal your woman
In this clip, Jimmy Merrit asks how the crowd is doing and one guy gives him a smart alec reply. Instead of lashing back at him, Jimmy starts hitting on the heckler’s girlfriend. It’s a pretty original comeback, although the comedian isn’t that funny.
9. No-name head shot
It must be hard being an amateur comedian trying to make a name for yourself. For this guy it is. So what does he do when a guy in the crowd gives him a hard time? He literally bashes the guy in the head with his guitar. Listen to the crowd’s shock. Set, over.
10. Jamie Foxx Heckles?
The scene is a roast on classic Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith. Jamie Foxx invites Doug Williams up, who proceeds to bomb. Instead of letting the audience boo him off the stage, Jamie gets on the mic and starts heckling him. A strange turn of events. You’d think comedians would give each other a bit of courtesy. Guess not.
Sometimes comedians own the hecklers, and sometimes the hecklers win. Some comedians remain calm, while others lose their temper. Regardless, you have to respect anyone who will stand up on a stage and put themselves at the mercy of an audience.
Have you seen any other awesome videos of comedians taking on hecklers?