Judy Gold – “Getting on a Rollercoaster and Getting Upset that You Got Scared”
Starting her standup career on a dare, Judy Gold has been a heavy hitter on the comedy scene since the late 80s. Enjoying the success of her recent book, Yes, I Can Say That: When They Come for the Comedians, We Are All in Trouble, Gold took the time to chat about how COVID has changed comedy, and audiences taking responsibility for their feelings.
Even though she's not one to go soft on her delivery, Gold has found herself having to translate some pre-COVID jokes to make them fit with post 2020 audiences. Having worked out a joke about people taking photos of themselves in the ICU with tubes coming out of them, Gold knew that in light of current events, the punchline might come off as tone deaf. "It was just a bit about how ridiculous people are on social media because they need so much attention. And then COVID hit, so, that doesn't translate now.
We have to change with the times. It's a challenge.
Her book, Yes, I Can Say That: When They Come for the Comedians, We Are All in Trouble takes a look at free speech, censorship, and cancel culture. She reminds readers that when you are in the audience of a comedy show, you have to be responsible for your own reactions, quote:
In the world of comedy. You know, the fact that if you're offended by a joke, that's on you. If you go in to a comedy club and get upset that you offended, that's like getting on a rollercoaster and getting upset that you got scared.
"We are social commentators," Gold continued. "We speak truth to power. When you get upset or offended by a word or a topic, that's on you. That doesn't mean that person can't discuss that. And you have to take in what is the intent of the comedian. Like, what are they trying to say? Because all we're trying to do is make you laugh."
Check out the exclusive interview with Judy Gold below.