David Letterman's comedy booker fired for revealing why the show doesn't have more female comedians

David Letterman's comedy booker fired for revealing why the show doesn't have more female comedians

Eddie Brill, longtime comedy booker for The Late Show With David Letterman, has been dismissed from his duties following a recent, controversial New York Times interview, in which Brill made certain statements regarding female comedians—statements that suggested female comics were not as funny as men, which is a debate we are still having despite Judd Apatow’s recent ideological victory over Jerry Lewis. “There are a lot less female comics who are authentic,” Brill thought it was a good idea to say while justifying his booking only a single female in 2011, adding for good measure, “I see a lot of female comics who to please an audience will act like men.” (Indeed, if only more women stayed true to themselves by, say, telling jokes about their period instead of pandering with prostate gags, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.) 

Brill’s appraisal of the state of female comedy didn’t go over so well at the newly launched Mirth Magazine, whose editorial condemning Brill subsequently sparked a discussion between readers, female comics who participated in the Times profile, and eventually Brill himself. At first, Brill claimed to have been quoted out of context—a claim that was quickly refuted by the interviewer, Jason Zinoman—but hours later, Brill came around to recognizing that he “should have been more accurate with my words and feelings in the interview,” and admitted, “It is time for me to accept the consequences of my printed words.”

And apparently he meant “consequences of my printed words” literally: Brill—who retained his job as the show’s warm-up comic—was reportedly relieved of his booking duties for “speaking to the press without authorization,” rather than what he actually said regarding his attitude toward those duties. After all, it’s one thing to spend years knowingly fostering a show that marginalizes female comics, but it’s another to go blabbing to the papers about it. [via New York Observer]