During a performance at Los Angeles’ Laugh Factory, comedian Dane Cook stirred a backlash when he joked about “The Dark Knight Rises” shooting in Colorado that left 12 people dead and 58 injured.
Cook said, “I heard that the guy came into the theater about 25 minutes [into the movie]. And I don’t know if you’ve seen the movie, but the movie’s pretty much a piece of crap. Yeah, spoiler alert. I know that if none of that would have happened, I’m pretty sure that somebody in that theater, about 25 minutes in realizing it was a piece of crap, probably was like, ‘Ugh, f**ing shoot me.’”
Cook later apologized after backlash erupted over the joke, but the controversy about it — and about a comment about rape Daniel Tosh used to admonish a heckler earlier this month — started a conversation with comics at the Television Critics Association gathering in Los Angeles over the weekend. Specifically, how far is too far?
Brad Garrett, who is a stand-up performer but best known for his work on “Everybody Loves Raymond,” told ABC News Radio that Cook crossed the line. “Absolutely … That’s just, you know, super poor taste,” Garrett said. ”To me, that’s definitely below the belt because … there’s nothing about [the situation] that could possibly be [seen as] humor.”
For his part, Russell Brand disagreed, saying he hadn’t heard either comment from Cook or Tosh, but he feels nothing should be out of a comic’s sights.
“I think if someone’s…a comedian, and they say something…you should recall the bit that they’re a comedian.” Brand says people tend to “remove that from the analysis to … create some storm of condemnation.”