Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Did You Watch The Bruce Willis Roast?

Funny ...

Filthy ...

I couldn't even imagine how this could warrant two and a half hours of airtime ...

And yet it just flew by.

(When you think about how many more people could have been ... and maybe SHOULD have been ... on the dais throwing insults, you'd have to budget a 24 hour Bruce Willis marathon ... which could quickly turn into Bruce Willis Week if you followed that up with a showing of his best known movie roles ... or maybe THREE weeks if you also showed all the movies that he made that really sucked ... or maybe even three MONTHS if you capped it all off with a showing of his entire "Moonlighting" series!)

That's where most of us first saw him ... smirky, smarmy David Addison, working for the Blue Moon Detective Agency with superstar / model Cybil Shepherd, who was supposed to be the REAL star of the show until America met and fell in love with newcomer Bruce Willis.  (It took awhile for me ... I first wrote him off as a Bill Murray / Michael Keaton wannabe ... but he eventually won me over, too.)

Leading man material?  For sure ... and Willis kicked off his movie career with a couple of lightweight romantic comedies that never really took him anywhere.

But action hero??? 

No way!!!

Where the hell did THAT idea come from?

And yet he pulled it off ... in role after role after role, creating an entire "Die Hard" franchise in the process.  (Truth be told, three was enough ... and even THAT was a bit of a stretch.)

But add in films like "Pulp Fiction" and "The Sixth Sense" and "Armageddon" and pretty soon Willis was the #1 Box Office Attraction.  (Who would have ever thought???)

He was just a harmonica-playing, R&B singing bartender nick-named "Bruno" in New York when he decided to give this acting thing a shot ... in fact, Motown Records signed him to a recording deal early on and his remake of The Staple Singers' tune "Respect Yourself" became a "respectable" hit in 1987 went it went to #5 in Billboard Magazine.  (Hey, I bought it!)

Backed by The Pointer Sisters (who, quite honestly, did all the heavy lifting), they were even able to score a prime time television special during which Willis danced and mugged to the camera throughout.  Again, whose idea was it that this guy could be an action hero?!?!?

The entire roast can be found on YouTube (and probably OnDemand on Comedy Central, too ... although I don't know if they'll be re-airing all 2 1/2 hours or just selected highlights.)

But be careful ... if you type "Bruce Willis" into the YouTube Search Engine, you just don't know WHAT might turn up!

Like this vintage video of Bruce and the Pointer Sisters performing his biggest hit.  (kk)