Barely memorable as a cast member on the old-school television show Suddenly Susan with Brooke Shields, Kathy Griffin has suddenly become one of the most colorful, challenging, inyour-face comics performing today. With her tiny stature, big flowing red hair and enough plastic surgery to put her in the witness protection program, it’s hard to imagine how someone who looks so put together could be as saucy as she is.
While Griffin has actually been performing comedy for more than 20 years, she’s had nowhere near this level of popularity until recently. Bravo TV gave her a reality show and called it My Life on the D-list, which gratuitously chronicles her daily attempts to become more famous. On the show, she’s become an undaunted and very, very loud voice for gay rights. Not only is Griffin enthusiastically supportive of LGBT rights, but so is her elderly Catholic mother, her staff and everyone she hangs out with. And as a result, many in the LGBT community have become loyal fans of her show and her live performances.
Though her act is obviously very similar to the shtick Joan Rivers has been doing for decades, Griffin has found a way to take that brash style and shoot it full of F-bombs and hate, appropriately matching today’s level of moral looseness.
The possibility that she might be able to stay the course, like Rivers has, is not completely out of the question, but it will be interesting to see if people will continue to be shocked or surprised by Griffin. Time will tell.