Is Kathy Griffin’s Comedy Career Over?

THOUSAND OAKS, CA - MAY 06:  Kathy Griffin performs at Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza on May 6, 2016 in Thousand Oaks, California.  (Photo by Jeff Golden/WireImage)

THOUSAND OAKS, CA – MAY 06: Kathy Griffin performs at Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza on May 6, 2016 in Thousand Oaks, California. (Photo by Jeff Golden/WireImage) 


Is Kathy Griffin’s Comedy Career Over?
Don’t worry, Kathy Griffin, you won’t get “arrested” for holding a bloody, decapitated replica of President Trump’s severed head.
Freedom of speech is a double-edged sword. Griffin’s freedom to pull a stunt like that is balanced by CNN’s freedom to fire her from its New Year’s Eve show after 10 years.
Trump is always going to fire back at his critics on Twitter; Griffin knew that. So he wasn’t “bullying” the comedian when he Tweeted:
“My children, especially my 11 year old, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick!”
If someone displayed a bloody effigy of my father, I would freak out, too … and I’m a lot older than 11.
The wrong joke
Timing is everything when it comes to comedy. Griffin’s display was supposed to mock Trump’s “blood coming out of her … whatever” line from last year.
The joke wasn’t timely, and it was too gruesome. As Griffin admitted in her apology, “it wasn’t funny.”
You can’t blame Griffin for trying. If I’ve learned anything from watching eight seasons of “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” it’s that comedians will do anything for a laugh.
Decency and decorum go out the window when you’re chasing the high of that big audience reaction.
Another thing Griffin chases is relevance. She knows she’s never been a huge star, as she used to have a reality show on Bravo called “My Life on the D List.”
So Griffin knew that even if this joke bombed, it would get people talking about her more than ever. Every president is an easy target for his critics…especially Trump.
Also, I’m not buying Griffin’s line that “he broke me” by calling her “sick.” She has dealt with hecklers on stage who have said much worse.
If federal agents had thrown her into an interrogation room for hours and treated her like a terrorist, then yes, I would believe that could “break” Griffin. But that didn’t happen.
What happens now?
Griffin worried that she is “not going to have a career after this.” She’s not paying me to be her agent, but here’s what she should do:
  • First, Griffin should lay low for a while. Stay out of the spotlight and work on some new comedy material.
  • Next, she should embrace the controversy and brand herself as an “outlaw” comic who isn’t afraid to say anything. The damage is done, so it’s too late to “play it safe” as a comic.
  • Finally, she should call up Mo’Nique and do a comedy tour and HBO special with her.
Remember Mo’Nique? She won an Oscar for “Precious,” but she has mostly vanished from Hollywood movies. Mo’Nique isn’t shy about talking about how she has been “whiteballed” from the industry.
So Kathy Griffin’s comedy career will continue. She won’t have to “pull a Brockmire” by disappearing for 10 years before re-emerging in the low minor leagues.
She just needs to take a deep breath and realize that this joke just didn’t work.