VIP Gilbert Gottfried | WBEZ
Skip to main content

Ask Me Another

Passionate Proclamations With Gilbert Gottfried

Gilbert Gottfried likes his comedy with a side of something dangerous.

"I think an audience - like when they go to a horror movie or get on a rollercoaster - they want that feeling like they're going to die," he said. "And then [they] get off and everything's okay. And I think when they see a comic they want to feel like something bad could happen. And with me, something bad is happening, because they spent money to see me."

In his interview with host and fellow comedian Ophira Eisenberg on the Ask Me Another stage, Gottfried talked about some of his more controversial punch lines...and why he'll never stop delivering them.

"Nowadays I feel like every joke should come with a set of instructions. If you think the joke is funny, laugh. And if you don't think the joke is funny, don't laugh," he said.

If you don't know Gilbert Gottfried from his jokes, you probably know him from his voice. He's the host of the Amazing Colossal Podcast and he played the parrot, Iago, in the movie Aladdin. So for his Ask Me Another Challenge, we wanted him to try his hand at something a little different: love poetry. Can you guess the famous historical lovers he's pretending to be?

This segment originally aired on September 18, 2014.

Interview Highlights

On starting his standup career at age 15

I did mainly impressions, like Boris Karloff and Humphrey Bogart. Even back then my act was dated.

On writing controversial material

Every time something pops in my head, I think twice about it and I do it anyway.

Remembering the 9/11 joke he told at Hugh Hefner's Comedy Central roast

One guy yelled out, "too soon!" I thought I didn't take long enough between the set up and the punch line.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit

Get the WBEZ App

Download the best live and on-demand public radio experience. Find out more.