Joan Rivers, driven diva of stand-up comedy and TV talk, dies at 81

Comedian started out telling jokes at Greenwich Village nightclubs in the 1960s.
MCT Regional News
Sep 4, 2014

In 1986, Joan Rivers made a fateful call to her mentor Johnny Carson.

Rivers, the brassy comic with the thick New York accent who had made “Can we talk?” her catchphrase, told the all-powerful host of NBC’s “Tonight Show” that she was giving up a role as his handpicked heir to do her own show on Fox.

It was, depending on how one looked at it, a bold bid for bigger stardom — or a stunning act of betrayal. Carson never spoke to her again in the remaining 19 years of his life. After her late-night show on Fox bombed, Rivers said she was virtually blackballed from TV.

A less-driven performer might have skulked off into obscurity. But Rivers, who died Thursday at 81, was nothing if not ambitious. The comedian who had started out telling jokes at Greenwich Village nightclubs in the 1960s reinvented herself as an acerbic red-carpet host for E! Entertainment, skewering celebrities and their fashion choices with help from her sidekick and only child, Melissa Rivers.

NOTE: To read the full story on the Los Angeles Times website, click HERE.

Comments

ISPSP

Oh my.... The people that can take me out of a dark mood and make me laugh are dying.... I will miss Joan Rivers and Robin Williams.

TheGravyWhisperer

...with ya, kiddo...

Cliff Cannon

They really don't make 'em like those two anymore.

JACKEL

She was The Don Rickles of the ladies !

JACKEL

Yea , another government elimination ! Be careful what you say. There are fake listening towers every where !

swiss family

Government elimination????????????????????????????????listening towers???? would you consider yourself to be paranoid at all????