jim gaffigan on clean comedy

Jim Gaffigan Says He Was ‘Resistant’ to Being Known as a Clean Comedian

July 27, 2023    By: Gutterhead Editorial

Jim Gaffigan has been busting up audiences with jokes for decades now, having created 10 stand up specials covering many different topics; sometimes he talks about food, yet other times, he discusses more dark and cynical themes like death, politics, and beliefs.

Although taking a variety of angles in his stand up, Gaffigan has developed a reputation as a clean comedian, of which he commented on in a recent interview with Salon.

“The entertainment industry is perception. In a lot of ways, you don’t have control over that. And in a lot of ways, it’s none of your business. I remember initially being resistant to being known as the clean comedian, just because the only adjective that really matters with stand-up is ‘funny.’ Like in one special, I had five minutes on cancer, and people were like, ‘He’s still clean. He talks about food,'” said Gaffigan.

He continued, explaining that comedians don’t have control over what people will take away from their work.

“You don’t have control over what people will take away or what people will assign to you. It’s a strange thing where I go with the flow. I’ve had numerous acting roles yet with every acting project, people are always like, ‘What’s it like to be an actor?’ These are intelligent people who have seen my IMDb page, but in their perception, I am a guy who only tells jokes about food.”

Despite not having that control, Gaffigan further explained that it doesn’t bother him, and that it’s not a fault on audiences—rather it’s just perception.

Jim Gaffigan’s New Stand Up Special ‘Dark Pale’

Gaffigan’s latest stand up comedy special titled ‘Dark Pale’ on Amazon Prime is described as: “Get ready for a darker shade of comedy! ‘Dark Pale’ marks Jim’s 10th comedy special, an unprecedented feat for the comedian, who continues to deliver fresh-yet-edgy material, ranging from funerals and family to balloon rides.”

The special released on July 25, 2023 and is available to stram on Prime.

It has released positive reviews as of yet, with Sean L. McCarthy of Decider writing, “The comedian who became a mainstream succes thanks to jokes about Hot Pockets and manatees has expanded his performance palette. In recent years, you’ve also seen Gaffigan as the leading man in the sci0fi drama, Linoleum, and co-starring in this summer’s limited series from Steven Soderbergh, Full Circle, on Max.”

Read more: 12 Best Stand Up Comedians of the 2020s (So Far)

Here’s a full list of all of Gaffigan’s stand up specials:

  • Jim Gaffigan: Beyond the Pale
  • Jim Gaffigan: King Baby
  • Jim Gaffigan: Mr. Universe
  • Jim Gaffigan: Obsessed
  • Jim Gaffigan: Cinco
  • Jim Gaffigan: Noble Ape
  • Jim Gaffigan: Quality Time
  • Jim Gaffigan: The Pale Tourist
  • Jim Gaffigan: Comedy Monster
  • Jim Gaffigan: Dark Pale