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Remembering Joan Rivers on what would be her 91st birthday

91 years ago today, Joan Alexandra Molinsky was born and became known to the world as 'Joan Rivers', one of the greatest female comediennes of all time. Rivers became a comedienne, actress, best-selling author, talk show host, writer, producer, and business entrepreneur. She died on September 4, 2014 after complications from throat surgery.

by Anonymousreply 89June 12, 2024 10:24 AM

I get the whole "trailblazer" thing and the admiration that succeeding generations of women comics had for her. But even from the Ed Sullivan days I never found her funny. Audacious and breathtakingly rude? Yes, but that could never be confused with funny. While I never cared or thought much about Elizabeth Taylor, I truly loathed the fat-shaming (before that phrase even existed) that Rivers subjected Taylor to. It was mean, disrespectful, and misogynistic.

by Anonymousreply 1June 8, 2024 9:11 PM

It was supposed to be a simple endoscopy procedure.

Gastro-enterologist Lawrence Cohen, MD, who was the medical director of the clinic until resigning after Ms. Rivers's death, reportedly found a polyp when he performed the endoscopy. Reports say he then let Ms. Rivers's personal otolaryngologist, who was neither credentialed nor privileged at the ASC, perform a biopsy on her vocal cords. The throat doctor, identified as Gwen Korvin, MD, was only authorized to observe Dr. Cohen. It's unclear whether Ms. Rivers had given Dr. Korvin consent to perform a biopsy.

The airway manipulation during Dr. Korvin's attempted biopsy likely triggered a laryngospasm, which led to cardiac arrest. Attempts to rescue Ms. Rivers failed, which has fueled speculation that there wasn't an anesthesiologist in the room.

by Anonymousreply 2June 8, 2024 9:12 PM

As morbid as it is to say, she left at a good time. I think she would have gotten herself cancelled. She was already asking for trouble with her Michelle Obama schpiel.

by Anonymousreply 3June 8, 2024 9:12 PM

I miss her so much.

by Anonymousreply 4June 8, 2024 9:14 PM

She left nepo baby Melissa a nice inheritance, plus the lawsuit against the doctors and the medical facility - Melissa is all set. She can get as much cosmetic surgery going forward as she desires.

by Anonymousreply 5June 8, 2024 9:17 PM

I thought her surgeon was dancing about taking selfies and generally making monkeyshines with Joan’s dying face.

by Anonymousreply 6June 8, 2024 9:21 PM

To this day, this is the funniest stand-up I have ever heard. She was brilliant.

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by Anonymousreply 7June 8, 2024 9:24 PM

Sadly, she would have been a Trump supporter.

by Anonymousreply 8June 8, 2024 9:29 PM

I used to find her funny. But, in her final years, she became increasingly shrill , increasingly bitter and increasingly hard to take. Her Republican roots were becoming more obvious, as evidenced by her shitty Michelle Obama material. She had a deservedly long career, but I can't say I miss her.

by Anonymousreply 9June 8, 2024 9:31 PM

R9 = Melissa

by Anonymousreply 10June 8, 2024 9:34 PM

[quote]one of the greatest female comediennes

Are their male comediennes?

by Anonymousreply 11June 8, 2024 9:37 PM


by Anonymousreply 12June 8, 2024 9:37 PM

R5- For sure.

I just asked Alexa- Melissa Rivers is worth an estimated $100 million.

by Anonymousreply 13June 8, 2024 9:37 PM

I want her grandson to sit on my face.

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by Anonymousreply 14June 8, 2024 9:39 PM

[quote]She left nepo baby Melissa a nice inheritance

Doesn't calling Melissa a "nepo baby" imply that she's had some kind of success on her own?

by Anonymousreply 15June 8, 2024 9:41 PM

[quote]I used to find her funny. But, in her final years, she became increasingly shrill , increasingly bitter and increasingly hard to take.

Once she started the red carpet coverages, I found that as well. She was just plain nasty to some celebrities for no good reason. Gillian Anderson being one of them.

Her documentary was very revealing. She not only took care of Melissa and her grandson, but had employees and kids of employees that she financially supported as well. I wonder if she felt she had no choice but to keep going because so many people depended upon her.

by Anonymousreply 16June 8, 2024 9:57 PM

The JR documentary A Piece of Work, made by a pair of Brits--I believe it came out a few years or so before she passed--was fascinating. She really never stopped, and I don't think that was for the cameras. It was my favorite film of that yeah. She had that cool apartment right near fifth Avenue and 59th St., where I paid my respects a few days after she died. There were many other people there as well, a few cops, a few barricades.

I saw Disney's Tarzan on Broadway when it was in previews. Intermission came, and when I turned around as she was across the aisle, one row back. I wish I knew then what I learned later on: she was perfectly fine with people approaching her to chat, etc. A missed opportunity

And yes, regarding Tarzan., the first 15 minutes were freaking amazing. The rest, not so much.

by Anonymousreply 17June 8, 2024 10:00 PM

R16 Well she screwed over her joke writers at one point. Didn't some of them try to sue her?

Since she left Melissa so much money, I doubt she had to work as much as she claimed.

by Anonymousreply 18June 8, 2024 10:01 PM

I don't think that's why she kept working, r16. I also saw the documentary. I remember her saying that she could stop working and live carefully but she loved her extravagant lifestyle too much. She also seemed like a total workaholic and not someone who enjoyed downtime.

by Anonymousreply 19June 8, 2024 10:06 PM

I still miss Joan.

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by Anonymousreply 20June 8, 2024 10:07 PM

I believe she was concerned that if she paused, it would all end.

by Anonymousreply 21June 8, 2024 10:08 PM

Joan had a frenetic energy.

I can't imagine her sitting at home eating candy and watching re-runs of The Golden Girls.

by Anonymousreply 22June 8, 2024 10:08 PM

I love that she made the appearance of burn victims more socially acceptable.

by Anonymousreply 23June 8, 2024 10:16 PM

Me, too, R21.

R22, like most celebrities her performance self was very different then her private self. She was very intelligent, complex and giving.

by Anonymousreply 24June 8, 2024 10:19 PM

R14, her grandson could shit on my tits. Too much?

by Anonymousreply 25June 8, 2024 10:23 PM

I'm surprised at all the love for her.

In her final years, it was obvious which way she was heading. She would DEFINITELY be talking about and supporting Trump, insulting Biden, etc.

She "got hers," lived like Marie Antoinette, and that was it.

She also never acknowledged that her husband Edgar was the one who ruined her career. Edgar insisted on working with her professionally and nobody wanted him around.

by Anonymousreply 26June 8, 2024 10:24 PM

[quote]it was obvious which way she was heading. She would DEFINITELY be talking about and supporting Trump, insulting Biden, etc.

Do you have to be politically correct to be funny?

by Anonymousreply 27June 8, 2024 10:28 PM

Joan Rivers died during surgery? So karma DOES exist!

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by Anonymousreply 28June 8, 2024 10:30 PM

[quote]She also never acknowledged that her husband Edgar was the one who ruined her career. Edgar insisted on working with her professionally and nobody wanted him around.

The guy committed suicide and they had a daughter. You really think trashing him in the public eye would have been the smart move?

And how did he ruin her career? The only misfire was the FOX show. He was the one who helped engineer all the stuff on the Tonight Show.

Maybe Carson shouldn't have been such a shitbag and given Joan the same treatment he gave David Brenner who also had a talkshow that aired opposite his on ABC around the same time. There was no problem welcoming Brenner back with open arms after his show tanked. Why not the same for Joan, aside from the obvious?

by Anonymousreply 29June 8, 2024 10:32 PM

If she’d survived the procedure, within a year she would have careened farther off the rails in loud, caustic devotion to Trump than even Roseanne has.

by Anonymousreply 30June 8, 2024 10:39 PM

She really never got over the premature death of her husband, Fang.

by Anonymousreply 31June 8, 2024 10:40 PM

R25 Not too much, just stupid

by Anonymousreply 32June 8, 2024 10:43 PM

Cooper Endicott . . . Come on down!

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by Anonymousreply 33June 8, 2024 10:47 PM

R33, Can you imagine all the sex he must be getting?

by Anonymousreply 34June 8, 2024 10:49 PM

R29, that's such bullshit. Rivers and company tried to do the show behind his back and tried to hire away his staff. Brenner said that he spoke to Carson about it and he was fine with everything. Freddy DeCordova said that you absolutely have to do what is best for you but you can be nice and professional about it. It says something significant when she never got over the Carson snub but didn't have a lot of trouble moving on from Edgar.

by Anonymousreply 35June 8, 2024 11:23 PM

Her anti Asian bigotry came from the idea that they were taking away Jewish men. Listen to her later routines and it's pretty evident. In fact, she admits it.

by Anonymousreply 36June 8, 2024 11:26 PM

I miss Joan; she was the funniest woman in the world. I was an avid fan, and saw her in concert.

She died two years before Donald Trump became President. She never, ever, to the best of my knowledge, said anything bad about him. (I could be wrong.). Everyone else, however, was fair game. Had she lived longer, would she have lampooned him? I don't think so. She would've avoided the subject. What do you think?

by Anonymousreply 37June 9, 2024 1:11 AM

Did you know that she has a small role in the movie "The Swimmer" with Burt Lancaster?

by Anonymousreply 38June 9, 2024 1:14 AM

One of her best moments was on the Graham Norton Show. It wasn't so much her spiel on the heartbreak of dry vagina, which was hilarious, but the reactions of the two other guests on the show.

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by Anonymousreply 39June 9, 2024 1:26 AM

Did Joan Rivers support Reagan? If she didn't then it's hard to see how she would support Trump.

by Anonymousreply 40June 9, 2024 1:27 AM

Who are the two people with Joan in R39's video? The guy is hot.

by Anonymousreply 41June 9, 2024 1:32 AM

This interview kind of summed up her contradictory nature to me

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by Anonymousreply 42June 9, 2024 1:38 AM

R40 She was friends with the Reagans and made no secret that she favored the tax cuts of Reaganomics.

by Anonymousreply 43June 9, 2024 1:45 AM

R40 Rivers was very good friends with Nancy Reagan, and visited the WH often in the 80s. I don't know if she supported Reagan and his politics, but she did support Nancy and her sense of fashion and style, and how she brought class and elegance back to the White House (which was missing after Jackie Kennedy left).

by Anonymousreply 44June 9, 2024 1:47 AM

She was on a season (and won) of the Apprentice when Trump was hosting. Melissa was on that season, as well. She was acting nutty, not sure if it was for show or for real.

by Anonymousreply 45June 9, 2024 1:50 AM

Joan loved Trump. She won the Apprentice and sent her loser daughter in. Joan and Melissa were nasty when Melissa lost.

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by Anonymousreply 46June 9, 2024 1:50 AM


by Anonymousreply 47June 9, 2024 1:53 AM

She was, as the documentary called her, "a piece of work." Very self-contradictory and self-destructive in her behavior in many ways, although she was a brilliant businesswoman.

by Anonymousreply 48June 9, 2024 1:57 AM

Another one who never found her funny. Likewise about Don Rickles. Not a fan of their comedic stylings.

by Anonymousreply 49June 9, 2024 2:02 AM

I remember when she went after the father of a kid who had a disability (can't remember what) and was upset that Joan joked about it. She was brutal and nasty, berating him from the stage. Joan wasn't PC.

by Anonymousreply 50June 9, 2024 2:02 AM

Melissa wouldn’t have sex with the orange monster. You’re fired!

by Anonymousreply 51June 9, 2024 2:25 AM

I thought she was hilarious. and became even more funny as she got older. In her final years, it seemed like she didn't give a damn who she offended and just went with the joke. Also, I really admired her efforts to stay current and relevant as she got older. She seemed to be informed of current events and her hair-style and clothing never became outdated. Combine that with her strong work ethic, it was hard to believe that Joan was over 80 when she died. She seemed much younger.

I liked her and miss her.

by Anonymousreply 52June 9, 2024 2:29 AM

Those of who worked at E! before it became the Joan & Melissa Rivers Network remember what a trainwreck Joan was to work with. I don't miss that woman.

by Anonymousreply 53June 9, 2024 2:31 AM

Carson dodged a bullet.

by Anonymousreply 54June 9, 2024 2:34 AM

Carson was an awful, weird man who held grudges like a little bitch.

Joan got the last laugh though by outlasting him in pop culture relevance.

by Anonymousreply 55June 9, 2024 2:53 AM

Joan shat on every opportunity she had. First Carson, then the Fox Show which her unalive husband fucked up for her, then "you gotta bring Missy in on this..." But when she was funny, she was hilarious.

by Anonymousreply 56June 9, 2024 3:29 AM

I didn't think she was funny and agree that Don Rickles wasn't funny, either.

HOWEVER, she was a very good interviewer. She asked good questions and didn't try to upstage the person she was interviewing.

There are some "In Bed with Joan Rivers" episodes on YouTube.

by Anonymousreply 57June 9, 2024 3:41 AM

She lost something with age. She relied too much on vulgarity and swearing. She also lost the manic quality that made it easy to put over even her weakest material.

by Anonymousreply 58June 9, 2024 3:45 AM

I hated that cunt, thrilled she was dead and we get to enjoy the irony bitch died at the dentist-thanks Joan-fuck off

by Anonymousreply 59June 9, 2024 4:34 AM

Thanks R59 That’s nothin she wouldn’t say…

by Anonymousreply 60June 9, 2024 4:36 AM

She killed her husband (caused his suicide) and blamed it on some fag.

by Anonymousreply 61June 9, 2024 4:39 AM

Melissa Rivers is alive and well. She looks good, too.

I've known a few people like Joan Rivers. Brilliant minds, racing thoughts, hilarious, often wildly inappropriate and sometimes cruel. I enjoyed Joan during her career as well as the documentary near the end of her life. I can see her supporting trump, the taxes thing and that she new him long before he went into politics. He's always been an ass and a creep but originals like Joan often don't judge others the way more rational people do. He inhabited the same realm of wealthy people who don't follow rules that she did. She might hurt some feelings and offend people while he'd destroy democracy and jail respectable people if he gets another chance. Big difference between the two.

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by Anonymousreply 62June 9, 2024 5:21 AM

Thank God attempts made to rescue “Ms.Rivers” failed. Dr. and staff awarded with Nobel Peace Prize.

by Anonymousreply 63June 9, 2024 5:51 AM

[quote]I remember when she went after the father of a kid who had a disability (can't remember what) and was upset that Joan joked about it. She was brutal and nasty, berating him from the stage. Joan wasn't PC.

That is in the documentary "A Piece of Work". Joan was never known to be PC, and anyone who knew her style of comedy knew she went after everyone. If this 'father' went to her comedy act, he should've known that. If he didn't like her sense of comedy he should have left - not heckle her while she was on stage performing. He didn't belong there.

by Anonymousreply 64June 9, 2024 4:19 PM

[quote]Joan wasn't PC.

I love how people say this like it's a positive thing.

Translation: She was deliberately offensive just to get cheap laughs. The very opposite of being witty.

by Anonymousreply 65June 9, 2024 5:43 PM

Didn’t Joan suggest Michelle Obama should be called “Blackie O”?

by Anonymousreply 66June 9, 2024 5:45 PM

Joan got a lot of sympathy playing grieving widow after Edgar committed suicide, but decades later, she revealed she had asked for a divorce days before his suicide, had affairs behind his back, and complained bitterly about how Edgar mistreated her throughout their marriage.

When she made that tasteless crack about 9/11 widows, it all made sense why she said what she said.

by Anonymousreply 67June 9, 2024 6:49 PM

[quote]Didn’t Joan suggest Michelle Obama should be called “Blackie O”?

This was the level of her wit in her final years.

by Anonymousreply 68June 9, 2024 6:57 PM

[quote]I love how people say this like it's a positive thing.

Positive or negative - it's still a fact.

by Anonymousreply 69June 9, 2024 7:12 PM

R64 She didn't go after everyone.

Joan never made jokes about AIDS patients, blacks (individuals yes like Oprah but seldom "the blacks"...), Jews (she'd make some about relatives but very PC & nothing like Jews are better at business, etc.). She did make a few gay jokes that made me cringe & she never had anything nice to say about any lesbian/bi famous woman ever. No Rosie, Gillian, Ellen, Melissa, etc. I don't know why they seemed to get under her skin, but they did. She obviously didn't like the way many dressed on her fashion shows but it seemed more personal than that. On the red carpet she seemed like she couldn't send them packing fast enough. Joan's gay shows on her talk shows were always gay men related & never lesbian related. Maybe 1 show at the most (for tokenism).

Joan was a superfan of all republican presidents as she was a lifelong one herself. No democrats. Joan & Melissa loved GOPer Steve Forbes (who had supergay Malcolm Forbes as his father) even when he came after THE GAYS to appeal to religious right voters back in the 90s as a Hail Mary campaign pass. His anti-gay rhetoric bombed & he slithered away off the public stage. The Rivers never apologized for dismissing his attacks on our community. I never liked either one after they signed onto his ANTI gay hate campaign. Money Money Money is all they both truly cared about.

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by Anonymousreply 70June 9, 2024 9:17 PM

R70, Joan hated lesbians. It was like she thought they were after her or some such nonsense.

Did you all know that Joan’s original show biz goal was to be a dramatic actress? Had she been successful we wouldn’t be talking about her.

by Anonymousreply 71June 9, 2024 9:48 PM

FFS Joan made more fun of herself than she did of anyone else. She did a bit on Carson about how her mother never wanted her and thought she was a dog. Including saying she was born with a wire hanger in her ear.

by Anonymousreply 72June 9, 2024 10:59 PM

Joan and Phyllis Diller were trailblazers whether you liked them or not.

by Anonymousreply 73June 9, 2024 11:22 PM

Could you imagine Joan talking about Israel today? She would need bodyguards 24/7. She also missed Trump. I wonder what she would have made of him now. She was a Republican. I’d expect she would have been like Judge Judy.

by Anonymousreply 74June 9, 2024 11:50 PM

Her and Judy were best friends.

by Anonymousreply 75June 9, 2024 11:50 PM

And Cindy Adams.

by Anonymousreply 76June 9, 2024 11:53 PM

[quote]Her and Judy were best friends.

JUDY who?

by Anonymousreply 77June 9, 2024 11:58 PM

Joan's private persona was very different from her public one. She volunteered delivering meals to sick and needy people for decades (including many Thanksgivings and XMas holidays) She also donated time volunteering for the Red Cross.

She paid medical bills for her staff's families, and paid tuitions for their kids to go to college.

She hosted the first celebrity AIDS fundraiser back in 1984 in Hollywood, and make frequent appearances at AIDS fundraisers throughout the 80's and 90's. She also left a sizeable amount of her 150-million-dollar estate to AIDS charities when she passed.

I don't know why she felt the need to be so mean spirited at times in public, but many who knew her off cameras often spoke of her generosity and kindness.

by Anonymousreply 78June 10, 2024 12:06 AM

Not always so kind, R78.

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by Anonymousreply 79June 10, 2024 5:32 AM

I loved Joan the comic, before I met her. I met her with Edgar and always thought that God, who would know the truth about Joan, would have sent him back to commit suicide AGAIN, because she wouldn't get it the first time.

Joan signed her correspondence Joan Rivers R. She reduced Rosenberg to a letter and elevated herself to queen. Pity Edgar wasn't a Cohen.

by Anonymousreply 80June 10, 2024 6:44 AM

My mom wasn't a fan of Joan at first but after she found out she accused Obama of being gay, Michelle being trans & adored Trump, she became an instant fan. "Isn't Joan wonderful?" Ugh.

The sad truth for us to realize at R70 is that if Steve Forbes started trashing the Jewish community for right wing votes back in the 1990s the Rivers duo would've dropped him in a heartbeat.

But for the gay rights movement (that he could've sent backwards momentum to for decades by winning the White House in the1990s...) NADA.

by Anonymousreply 81June 10, 2024 7:02 AM

She "accused" Obama of being gay, R81?

by Anonymousreply 82June 10, 2024 10:28 AM

. . .

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by Anonymousreply 83June 10, 2024 11:26 AM

R78, Joan was overcompensating for her mean streak. She obviously thought someone/everyone had done her wrong way back when and was always getting back at “them.” I wonder if it was her stuck up mother.

by Anonymousreply 84June 10, 2024 1:10 PM

Melissa has said that there were four members of the Rosenberg family: Edgar, Joan, Melissa, and “The Career.” The Career was the most important member that everyone else had to revolve around.

Joan said that once her Fox show was canceled, Edgar became severely depressed, to the point that Joan felt it was detrimental to the other members of the family (of course including The Career), so she threw Edgar out of the house. I think Joan said that one of the reasons she did that was because he refused to get medical help. He then committed suicide.

When The Career is the most important member of a family, I think it’s likely there will be suffering of all kinds to the other members of the family.

by Anonymousreply 85June 10, 2024 10:59 PM

Poor things, The Career made them vastly wealthy.

by Anonymousreply 86June 10, 2024 11:35 PM

[quote] . She volunteered delivering meals to sick and needy people for decades (including many Thanksgivings and XMas holidays

I like Joan and don’t doubt her kindness but charities and shelters are inundated with people wanting to volunteer over the holidays. But not the rest of the year.

by Anonymousreply 87June 11, 2024 2:04 PM

R85 Money can't buy happiness in a fucked up family.

by Anonymousreply 88June 12, 2024 6:45 AM

^ Wanna bet? Everyone has a fucked up family. Better to be rich and fucked up than poor and fucked up.

by Anonymousreply 89June 12, 2024 10:24 AM
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