Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Now on DVD: Dean Martin Roasts — the Bawdy Show Business Insult Hit of the 70’s

posted by Nell Minow

It started at the very exclusive, men-only (until 1988), Friars Club for comedians, singers, and other performers and show business professionals.  They were known for raucous and bawdy humor and in the late 1940’s they held their first “roast,” a dinner that “celebrated” a star with hilarious insults.   It was entertainer and television host Dean Martin who first put a roast on his show in 1973 so that the public could see it.  It was so popular that it became a regular series for about ten years and now continue on Comedy Central from time to time, most recently “honoring” James Franco.  The comedians try to outdo each other, challenging the group to see who is the funniest and who is the most shocking.  Generally, everyone strives to be both.

Advertisement

A new 6-DVD set from StarVista has issued the Dean Martin Celebrity Roast-Collectors Edition, featuring roasts honoring Bob Hope, Johnny Carson, Jimmy Stewart, Sammy Davis, Jr., Jack Benny, Lucille Ball, Kirk Douglas, Michael Landon, Jackie Gleason, Don Rickles, Joan Collins, and the man himself, Dean Martin.  Roasting them are a full collection of 70’s luminaries, including Muhammad Ali, George Burns, Florence Henderson, Bette Davis, Phyllis Diller, and Milton Berle.  A warning on the package cautions that the racial and ethnic humor of the era may seem inappropriate by today’s standards (on the other hand, if those folks ever heard the jokes at today’s events, they would be very surprised by the explicitly raunchy humor).  “Keep in mind the tenor of the times, the bawdy party atmosphere, and the fact that many of these celebrities were friends who loved to give and take a good shot.  The cigarettes are real, the drinks are free, and the camaraderie is heartfelt.”

The DVD set also includes lots of extras, with bonus comedy sketches, two more Dean Martin specials, featurettes, interviews, and home movies.

 

Previous Posts

Tribute: Anne Meara
Today we mourn the loss of actress/comedian Anne Meara, wife of Jerry Stiller and mother of actor/director Ben Stiller. Stiller and Meara were a comedy team who appeared frequently on the Ed Sullivan show. Their humor often focused on their ...

posted 1:25:55pm May. 25, 2015 | read full post »

History of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier -- Arlington National Cemetery
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MM5bVX-yd-c[/youtube] ...

posted 12:00:26pm May. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Memorial Day 2015
[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2yQFvZsN43A[/youtube] ...

posted 6:00:55am May. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Tonight on PBS: Memorial Day Concert
On the eve of Memorial Day, PBS will broadcast a star-studded lineup for the annual Memorial Day concert and tribute to the military. For over 25 years, this multiple-award-winning television event has honored the military service and sacrifice ...

posted 12:00:37pm May. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Movies for Memorial Day
I've already written about great documentaries and feature films about the military to watch on Memorial Day.  These recent documentaries about our 21st century conflicts give the military a chance to tell their own story.  They are not ...

posted 8:00:08am May. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.