Comedian Gilbert Gottfried was remembering his old friend and fellow Aristocrats standout Bob Saget Monday morning when he revealed that their most infamous comedy moment together has become another joke that some people on social media just don’t get.
Saget, 65, was found dead in his room at the Ritz-Carlton, Orlando, on Sunday with no signs of foul play or drug use.
During SiriusXM’s “Jim Norton & Sam Roberts,” Gottfried recalled: “I had spoken to him a couple of days ago and he sounded his usual self… He was joking around and being sarcastic.”
It was standup veteran and legendary roast master Jeff Ross who told Gottfried on Sunday night that their friend had passed away.
“He said, ‘Bad news. Bob Saget Died.’ I was, like, waiting for the punchline,” Gottfried said. “And I thought, ‘That’s like a sick joke.’ I was up for a punchline like that. And nothing came.”
Gottfried added, “And I still feel like I’m waiting for the punchline of it.”
Gottfried wasn’t the only friend of Saget’s who was in disbelief at first.
“I spoke to Penn Gillette and he said he saw somewhere that it was a hoax… Then I called back Jeff, and he said, ‘No. No hoax.'”
It was fitting that Ross should be the one to break the news, since he was emceeing on the night of Comedy Central’s 2008 roast of Saget, when Gottfried performed a bit that would live in comedy infamy.
“Why should we pick Bob Saget, who raped and killed a girl in 1990?” Gottfried opened his set. “Well, first of all it’s not true. It’s not true that Bob Saget raped and killed a girl in 1990! If you have any proof that Bob Saget raped and killed a girl in 1990, stop gossiping and go straight to the police with it!”
Despite the fact that the entire audience, including Saget, laughed wildly, Gottfried reports that, lately, some corners of social media have a hard time discerning that he was engaging in humor.
“I heard recently that they dug up that roast and now there are people on the internet who were actually saying that this was true,” Gottfried said. “Because why would a comedian make a joke?”
“Sure,” Norton offered. “Why would a comedian say something that was false?”
Gottfried said that when the bit started reemerging, Saget “got upset… They were all after him on the internet and everywhere, thinking, ‘Oh, Gilbert Gottfried said it—it’s gotta be true.”
Roberts laughed, “When has that sentence ever been uttered?”
“Yeah,” Gottfried replied. “The two names that that goes with are Gilbert Gottfried and Walter Cronkite.”
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