Comedy Central Is Editing Out All Paul Walker Jokes from the Justin Bieber Roast
There is no sacred ground on a Comedy Central Roast: except the deaths of recently-departed celebrities.
The network will be editing out a number of Paul Walker jokes that were made during the taping of the Roast of Justin Bieber. Comedy Central released an official statement addressing the censoring:
“Roasts often push the limits of good taste and we give the participants full reign to try things knowing we have the edit to shape the show,” said a network rep in a statement. “Sometimes the line is discovered by crossing it. The Paul Walker references will not be in the telecast.”
The special was taped on Saturday, and a number of the jokes touched on the gruesome nature of Walker’s death, which occurred in November 2013.
“‘Move bitch, get out of the way!’ is what Paul Walker should’ve told that tree,” said roast veteran Jeff Ross during the taping. “Too soon? Too fast? Too furious?”
“Just this past year, Justin got arrested for drag racing,” said current Saturday Night Live castmember and fellow roaster Pete Davidson. “Unfortunately, it wasn’t with Paul Walker. What? He’s doing great! He’s got a movie coming out!”
After the ceremony, Bieber was every bit as uncomfortable about the jokes as Comedy Central was. When asked if he thought any of the jokes crossed the line or bothered him in any way, he noted that he “didn’t particularly like the Paul Walker jokes.”
Normally, I’m not big on comedic censorship, since either all of it is okay or none of it is okay. But in this case, I don’t really mind the removal of the jokes, since they aren’t really on-topic at all. Granted, jokes at a roast do tend to extend to people on the dais, and other tangential subjects related to people in the building, or current events. However, at the risk of coming across like a square, I don’t feel like we’re losing anything with these Paul Walker jokes.
But what do you think? Did the Paul Walker jokes go too far? Or is editing them out an overreaction? Sound off in the comments!