A mostly generic background article on Sarah prior to her April 27 Borgata Casino show.
By David J. Spatz
Posted Apr. 24, 2013.
Not for Sarah Silverman. She’s no innocent, of course. But Silverman doesn’t cross the line with her edgy brand of comedy simply for its shock value.
The full-time comedian and occasional actress says her often shocking material is really just her way of showing her fans that she’s a comedy artisan.
“First, it’s the craft of the joke,” she said during a recent interview with the Washington Post. “There are so many people who are like, ‘Race stuff, that’s edgy,’ so they’re just racist and it’s awful. Audiences are like dogs — they can smell what’s underneath the material, and that’s something you can’t plan or fake. Sometimes people don’t buy it from me, and sometimes they do.”
Even if Silverman does cross the line in an offensive way, she refuses to apologize. That was never more apparent more than a decade ago, when she came under fire for using a slang term for Asians on a late-night television show.
The president of an Asian-American group demanded an apology from Silverman, who refused to back down. The comedian said she didn’t use the offensive word to perpetuate racism, but to merely point out the misinformed logic of racism.
“I never apologize for anything I’m not sorry for, and I can’t control how things are inferred,” she said.
Silverman, who brings her humor to the stage of Borgata’s Music Box for a one-night-stand on Saturday, April 27, is one of a large contingent of stand-up comedians who used Saturday Night Live as a career springboard. Unlike many of her former SNL colleagues, though, Silverman, 42, wasn’t exactly a long-time member of the pioneering late-night comedy show. She was a one-and-done writer and performer, fired after the 1993-94 season because only one of her sketches ever made it to the dress rehearsal stage, and none of her bits ever aired on the show.
Almost as painful as being dumped from the show was the way she was let go — by fax. However, she used the experience to help create a funny parody when she appeared on The Larry Sanders Show two years later.
Silverman isn’t one of those comedians who came out of nowhere and burst onto the scene. Her career has been one of steady growth as she moved between developing her stand-up chops and small acting roles in films like There’s Something About Mary, School of Rock, Screwed and Rent.
She was equally visible on television on series ranging from Star Trek: Voyager to Seinfeld to Crank Yankers.