Richard Simmons on "Whose Line"
July 6, 2006 10:49 AM   Subscribe

Richard Simmons visits "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" (youtube) Drew Carey falls out of his chair; audience members literally roll in the aisle; Wayne Brady regresses into infancy. It's that sort of funny.
posted by Saucy Intruder (100 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Why is it this video seems to do the rounds every six months? It's still funny, but Richard Simmon's voice alone after a minute becomes completely annoying.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 10:53 AM on July 6, 2006


Literally ROFL
posted by caddis at 11:00 AM on July 6, 2006


Oh I get it, it's funny because they are all men, so it's like they're gay together. And it's funnier because some of them actually ARE gay! Ha ha ha!

No really, I enjoyed it (I'm not entirely humourless), but I'm kind of tired of the whole "Isn't it funny when men pretend to be homos?" shtick.
posted by arcticwoman at 11:03 AM on July 6, 2006


Arcticwoman, I usually have the same opinion, but it IS Richard Simmons after all, which cranks the surreal level up to 11.

"You get the shiny one"
posted by Robot Johnny at 11:08 AM on July 6, 2006


Very funny! Thanks, Saucy.
posted by Ricky_gr10 at 11:09 AM on July 6, 2006


arcticwoman, Richard Simmons had been a running gag on Whose Line for years prior to this episode. He's just one of those stock celebrities whom it's hilarious to impersonate, like William Shatner, Elvis Presley and John Wayne. So there's that background. Plus, the full version of the episode from which this is excerpted played out like this:

- Game (Party Quirks, I think) where one of the actors has to imitate Richard Simmons.
- The game where Colin has to guess what's behind him on the green screen. It's Richard Simmons.
- Richard Simmons himself appears in the studio!

So it's really not just a random hey-laugh-at-the-funny-gay-guy. This was built up, and done well.
posted by Faint of Butt at 11:09 AM on July 6, 2006


I confess that the first time I saw this I laughed so hard I nearly had a seizure. There. I said it.
posted by jokeefe at 11:10 AM on July 6, 2006


Richard Simmons isn't gay.
posted by Saucy Intruder at 11:11 AM on July 6, 2006


More here.
posted by Gyan at 11:12 AM on July 6, 2006


I saw Richard Simmons in Lincoln, Nebraska once. He was getting out of a car in a parking lot near the stadium. From a newspaper story I saw later, he was evidently attending some meeting at the athletic department. Some low-key thing he just popped in and out of town for.

What struck me was that -- he really DOES wear that outfit everywhere.
posted by RavinDave at 11:17 AM on July 6, 2006


It is very funny, I think, for me at least, 80% of it is how hard everyone is laughing. Laughter can be contagious, and if it is in context with something amusing everything gets magnified. I saw this on the TV when it aired. Not a huge TV watcher but I've always like this show, both American and British versions.
posted by edgeways at 11:18 AM on July 6, 2006


I don't think it is fairof Richard Simmons to compare gay people to ugly people. Ugly people are ugly because they have committed some hideous sin, and god has manifested that sin upon their abnormal hideous visage. Gay people, on the other hand, are just born that way.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:18 AM on July 6, 2006 [2 favorites]


Robot Johnny and Faint of Butt, you are both right of course, Richard Simmons is somewhat of a force to himself. Thanks for the background FoB, I haven't had a tv in quite a while, so I miss stuff. And I have to admit that I do think that Richard Simmons is adorable, in a small-dog kind of way. I still get tired of homoeroticism as comedy, though, although maybe it hadn't been as overdone when that clip was made as it is now.
posted by arcticwoman at 11:22 AM on July 6, 2006


Richard Simmons isn't gay.

The gay people tell him to say that since he makes them look gay.
posted by jonmc at 11:25 AM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


it's pretty funny, but some of the scenes look a little bit like porn. if you have a cubicle near a meeting room, you might want to save this one for home viewing. unless you're interested in an IMMEDIATE FIRING WITHOUT PREJUDICE OR RECOURSE. ;-)
posted by lord_wolf at 11:27 AM on July 6, 2006


I like how it says ABC Family in the corner.
posted by allkindsoftime at 11:31 AM on July 6, 2006


There's a somewhat hilarious, futile debate on the Richard Simmons Wikipedia talk page regarding his repeated denial of being gay. I hate to join the chorus but if there's one thing I know in the world, it's that Richard Simmons isn't interested in vaginas.
posted by inoculatedcities at 11:32 AM on July 6, 2006


Richard Simmons isn't interested in vaginas.

What if the vaginas in question want to slim down, shape up or sweat to the oldies?
posted by jonmc at 11:33 AM on July 6, 2006


arcticwoman: "Isn't it funny when men act gay" is about 50% of the content of the American version of Whose Line, which is why I stopped watching it. The joke just gets old.

That said, I loved this just because Simmons was obviously having a blast, taking the innuendo further and further.
posted by infidelpants at 11:34 AM on July 6, 2006


I feel the same way about Richard Simmons as I do about Pamela Anderson: They both know and acknowledge, however tacitly, exactly what they are. For that, I love them both.
posted by Gator at 11:36 AM on July 6, 2006


"Richard Simmons isn't gay."

*speechless*
posted by graventy at 11:39 AM on July 6, 2006


His facial expressions are very funny.
posted by sonofsamiam at 11:40 AM on July 6, 2006


I played it at work and everyone gathered 'round to watch. Then the men started humping each other. Then I got a raise!
posted by deadfather at 11:40 AM on July 6, 2006


Anybody else remember the episode of Letterman where Dave & Richard Simmons walk along streets in residential NJ neighborhoods knocking on random front doors to see who's home? Comedy Gold!
posted by squalor at 11:42 AM on July 6, 2006


oh yea.
this is one piece of video that has had me ROFL a LOT.
posted by zenzizi at 11:43 AM on July 6, 2006


What I always find interesting (and a bit frustrating) is how much focus and attention is put on Richard Simmons being gay and silly while so little is placed on all the great work he does for people with weight and self-esteem issues. The man is a kind, kind soul.
posted by NationalKato at 11:44 AM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


One of my friends (a Richard Simmons fan) recently told me this story:

One day some of her friends spotted Richard Simmons. They went up to him and said, "Our friend is a huge fan, can we get your autograph?"

And he said, "No, let's call her!"

So they wandered until they found a payphone and he called her, "Hi, this is Richard Simmons! How are you?"

"Who is this really?"
posted by justkevin at 11:45 AM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


How about when Richard Simmons guest-starred on "Evening Shade" with Burt Reynolds? Talk about surreal. "Merleen, Richard Simmons is not making PEOPLE out of excess FAT! If you don't stop talking like this, I'm gonna have to put you away!"
posted by Gator at 11:47 AM on July 6, 2006


Indeed he is, NationalKato. He's also a completely over-the-top goofy motherfucker beyond being gay and as such cries out for parody and to leave that alone would be a species of homophobia itself, methinks.
posted by jonmc at 11:47 AM on July 6, 2006


So it's really not just a random hey-laugh-at-the-funny-gay-guy. This was built up, and done well.

I can see how it might have been funny in that case (knowing who on earth the little man in shorts is would probably help too!) - I just watched it and wondered why on earth everyone was laughing so much at bog-standard Whose Line...? fare.

Also, is the pool of improvising comedians really tiny or what? Greg Proops, Ryan Styles and Colin Mochrie were all on the original Whose Line...? programme too. (I hope and pray that you don't get Tony Slattery and John Sessions on the US version too. Pair of smug pricks.)
posted by jack_mo at 11:48 AM on July 6, 2006



posted by wigu at 11:50 AM on July 6, 2006


One day some of her friends spotted Richard Simmons. They went up to him and said, "Our friend is a huge fan, can we get your autograph?"

And he said, "No, let's call her!"

So they wandered until they found a payphone and he called her, "Hi, this is Richard Simmons! How are you?"


That's something that I never knew about Richard Simmons and that doesn't show on this video--he's a man of class. I really like this story.
posted by leftcoastbob at 11:50 AM on July 6, 2006


Hey, I didn't realize wigu membered here!
posted by sonofsamiam at 11:53 AM on July 6, 2006


Oh, don't get me wrong, jonmc. I think he's hilarious. I just assume most people see him as gay and silly and that's about all. The stories of his sacrifices, generosity, and altruism are really impressive.
posted by NationalKato at 11:54 AM on July 6, 2006


Chappelle and Wayne Brady: Black Actors Need to Stick Together!
posted by bardic at 11:55 AM on July 6, 2006


I just assume most people see him as gay and silly and that's about all.

If that were true, he wouldn't still be around and making money.
posted by jonmc at 11:55 AM on July 6, 2006


I just find the Richard Simmons painful and unwatchable but Tapioca made me laugh until tears came out and my gut hurt.
posted by Wolfdog at 11:55 AM on July 6, 2006


Oh god, I'm crying I was laughing so hard and trying not to make a sound here at work. Good stuff.
posted by papercake at 11:57 AM on July 6, 2006


leftcoastbob, Richard is a wonderful caring man, but anyone who wears that outfit in public on a permanent basis is definetly not classy.

If anything speaks against his being gay, it's that he's worn the same outfit for the last 20 years.

=p
posted by nomisxid at 12:02 PM on July 6, 2006


*laughs till he's choking and wiping away tears*

omfgwtf. *bookmarks for later use any time he really needs a good laugh*

Yeah, I've seen it before. I saw it when it was first aired. Every time I see that scene I just about piss myself from laughing so hard.

A small part of it that makes it so funny is the backstory behind Richard Simmons as a running gag on the show, another small part is Richard Simmons just being Richard Simmons and a huge part of it is just watching Drew lose it so badly along with the entire audience. There's very nearly a mosh pit up in the top rows from people laughing so hard and jumping up and down. It's as infectious as hell.

*watches it again*

*snork* oh god my face and ribs hurt make it stop.

Richard, it's ok if you're gay. It's ok if you're bi or totally asexual, or simply just a great big smiling flaming sparkling fireball of Richard Simmons. It doesn't matter. You're unlabelable. You used to annoy me when I was a dumb kid, but you grew on me. Just keep on being energetic smiling shiny Richard Simmons and never letting the world or anything or anyone get you down.
posted by loquacious at 12:13 PM on July 6, 2006


Funnier on Howard Stern when Howard would make jokes about Simmons' sexual preferences and Simmons' would storm out of the studio in a huff. They were friends until Stern read an article on air about the male prostitute who was allegedly hired by Simmons to come up to his hotel room and spank him (for starters).
posted by wfc123 at 12:14 PM on July 6, 2006


Funny, but without Mike McShane the show is nothing. Nothing!
posted by milquetoast at 12:22 PM on July 6, 2006


Are you trying to get me fired Wolfdog?
posted by Skorgu at 12:22 PM on July 6, 2006


I don't know or care if Richard Simmons is gay or not. What I do know is that the E! True Hollywood Story about him in which he authorized and participated made ABSOLUTELY no comment in any way shape or form about his sexuality or his perceived sexuality. If there was ever a part of his life they should have addressed (given that we're talking about E! and Richard Simmons of all people) would have been at least the public's idea that he is gay. Nope, not a word.
posted by pwb503 at 12:28 PM on July 6, 2006


Tapioca was funny, but not as funny as the Simmons sketch.

But that's ok. Y'know what's not funny at all? Cuba? That wikipedia talk page.
posted by loquacious at 12:31 PM on July 6, 2006


man jeffrey that better not have taken precious time away from comic-smithin'. AND BRING BACK HORSEMAN.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 12:32 PM on July 6, 2006


pwb503: Why does it even matter? Why should he accept any label given to him by anyone, even himself? Why do people have an overwhelming need to catagorize and label people?

Does it stem from some human need to catagorize things into groups like "Things I'd like to hump." "Things I wouldn't like to hump." "Things I wouldn't like to have humping on me"??

Get the fuck over it. (The public in general, not pwb503) He doesn't want to be labeled.

Furthermore, it's probably exactly this mystery that has kept him the public consciousness for so long.
posted by loquacious at 12:36 PM on July 6, 2006


Does it stem from some human need to catagorize things into groups like "Things I'd like to hump." "Things I wouldn't like to hump." "Things I wouldn't like to have humping on me"??

That's about what's going through my mind as I walk down the sidewalk, yes.
posted by jonmc at 12:37 PM on July 6, 2006


And he said, "No, let's call her!"

friend of mine got a call from Richard Simmons too, on her birthday. her father sat next to him on a plane. he sang to her.

plochop jokes are always funny, with or without the gay.
posted by carsonb at 12:43 PM on July 6, 2006


Hey, I didn't realize wigu membered here!

Membered? You un-verb that right fucking now.
posted by cortex at 12:47 PM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


You know. I almost forgot my grammar, but at the last minute I membered.
posted by Wolfdog at 12:51 PM on July 6, 2006


ABC Family
posted by jca at 12:55 PM on July 6, 2006


ABC Family

I heard Richard Simmons has a mother and a father.
posted by NationalKato at 1:06 PM on July 6, 2006


Of course it wouldn't have happened without Richard, but what made it funny for me were Colin and Ryan's lines. Otherwise, it would've just been Richard Simmons being, well, Richard Simmons.
posted by hellbient at 1:06 PM on July 6, 2006


I heard Richard Simmons has a mother and a father.

Actually he reproduces by budding like an amoeba, so there's a whole army of him out there. Lock your doors.
posted by jonmc at 1:10 PM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


Fuck you and your bud-centric views, jonmc. Richard Simmons reproduces via a cloud of spores.
posted by Gator at 1:11 PM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


That's about what's going through my mind as I walk down the sidewalk, yes.

Well, I know you do. But you've got the common sense to not have to label people and put them in little boxes.

Unless being put in little boxes turns them on and you intend on humping on them/having them hump on you.

Actually he reproduces by budding like an amoeba, so there's a whole army of him out there. Lock your doors.

Lock my doors? Dude, I'm trying to collect enough of them to coat my entire body. Do you have any idea how much a suit of woven Richard Simmonses is worth and how fabulous that would be?
posted by loquacious at 1:14 PM on July 6, 2006


You un-verb that right fucking now.

Hate it, sucker.
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:17 PM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


Spores, you say? That I think that might be a lot easier than trying trying to find the right culture medium, which I haven't been able to find yet. The standard sugar/agar plates just aren't working, and I've tried almost everything, including those fluffy pink Hostess Sno-balls.

Quick, someone hunt him down and send me a spore print! This is for SCIENCE!!1!

*wanders off to autoclave huge Mason jars full of sterlized brown rice*
posted by loquacious at 1:18 PM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


send me a spore print!

"Ok, we're just going to lower you onto this big piece of paper and leave you covered overnight..."

"er... is it really necessary to remove my stem?"
posted by sonofsamiam at 1:21 PM on July 6, 2006


Richard Simmons reproduces via a cloud of spores.

*cough*

Lock my doors? Dude, I'm trying to collect enough of them to coat my entire body. Do you have any idea how much a suit of woven Richard Simmonses is worth and how fabulous that would be?

Perhaps. But would all the mincing start to chafe?
posted by jonmc at 1:28 PM on July 6, 2006


I hadn't heard of Richard Simmons before seeing this. Given that the image of him pretending to be a deckchair or a jetski is now burned into my retinas, I am unlikely to forget in future.
posted by greycap at 1:29 PM on July 6, 2006


"Does it stem from some human need to catagorize things into groups like 'Things I'd like to hump.' 'Things I wouldn't like to hump.' 'Things I wouldn't like to have humping on me'??"

I see absolutely no reason for that last category.
posted by graventy at 1:33 PM on July 6, 2006


*humps on graventy*

you sure about that?
posted by jonmc at 1:36 PM on July 6, 2006


The "things I want to have humping on me" category is missing.

You know the weirdest thing about Richard Simmons? When he was 18 and overweight, he played a battle axe bearing centurion in the food orgy sequence in Fellini's Satyricon.
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:46 PM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


Hmmm.... This is getting scary. I think I'm going to stop visiting this thread, before someone posts a photoshopped image I don't want to see.
posted by Bugg at 1:46 PM on July 6, 2006


The "things I want to have humping on me" category is missing.

The catagory is available, I was just assuming you were all smart enough to figure out that it was there by inference.

*humps on graventy*

Wait. Do that again. *grabs camera*
posted by loquacious at 1:50 PM on July 6, 2006


*Photoshops loquacious's head on jonmc's body*
posted by Floydd at 1:54 PM on July 6, 2006


*gets fired for viewing it at work*
posted by Floydd at 1:55 PM on July 6, 2006


That's not going to work. His head is much larger than mine.
posted by loquacious at 1:56 PM on July 6, 2006


Simmons is completely sincere and has probably saved more lives than the average heart surgeon. I have real admiration for the man.

One thing that sticks out in my mind was when Simmons' was on Letterman after David Letterman's brush with death by-pass surgery. Letterman gave the man a very brief but touching and un-Letterman hug. The foolish schtick was absent for a minute. They both were holding back real tears of affection for each other.

A lesser man may have been choked up by that scene. Not me.

Now excuse me... I have something in my eye...
posted by tkchrist at 1:58 PM on July 6, 2006


Probably a spore.
posted by sonofsamiam at 2:14 PM on July 6, 2006


Probably a spore.

Eeeeeeew! He promised he wouldn't do that anymore.
posted by tkchrist at 2:21 PM on July 6, 2006


The only thing that would make this thread funnier would be a surprise appearance by Richard Simmons.

So...

Ladies and Gentlemen, Richard Simmons!!!


Insert reference to "Sweatin' to the Metafilter Music" here


Alright, let's everybody give a big hand for Richard Simmons! Coming up next, David Hasselhoff!
posted by wendell at 2:33 PM on July 6, 2006


I hadn't heard of Richard Simmons before seeing this.

saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay whaaaaaaaat?!
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 2:43 PM on July 6, 2006


Coming up next, David Hasselhoff!

David Hasselhoff: "I'm delighted to be such a hit on the web and to be crowned king of the Internet."

And, last week: David Hasselhoff Spends Night In Hospital After A "Shaving" Accident.
posted by ericb at 2:45 PM on July 6, 2006


Metafilter: You un-verb that right fucking now.
posted by ninjew at 3:11 PM on July 6, 2006


By British standards this not very funny.
posted by Joeforking at 3:22 PM on July 6, 2006


The company I work for does property management and one of the properties is a senior property (all the residents are 62+). They have a little exercise group that meets once a week. Richard Simmons had a conference call with them to encourage them. All those little old ladies were thrilled. He's a really nice guy.
posted by chiababe at 3:22 PM on July 6, 2006


Furthermore, it's probably exactly this mystery that has kept him the public consciousness for so long.

Yeah, because Ellen Degeneres' career really fizzled after she came out.
posted by StrasbourgSecaucus at 3:33 PM on July 6, 2006


Membered? You un-verb that right fucking now.

So, dismember it? I just don't get this new lingo.

Furthermore, it's probably exactly this mystery that has kept him the public consciousness for so long.

And here I was, thinking it was because he has remained true to himself - sure, he's a walking caricature, but even HE knows that, and he likes it that way. He also loves his fans, almost to the point of creepiness.
posted by FormlessOne at 4:07 PM on July 6, 2006


You know the weirdest thing about Richard Simmons? When he was 18 and overweight, he played a battle axe bearing centurion in the food orgy sequence in Fellini's Satyricon.

Well, that just hit my WTF quota for the next month or two.
posted by jokeefe at 4:09 PM on July 6, 2006 [1 favorite]


Furthermore, it's probably exactly this mystery that has kept him the public consciousness for so long.

And here I was, thinking it was because he has remained true to himself - sure, he's a walking caricature, but even HE knows that, and he likes it that way. He also loves his fans, almost to the point of creepiness.


Well, that too, and more than probably. I should probably replace "probably" with "possibly". I've been a little too sloppy with my language for a while now, possibly from multitasking too much.
posted by loquacious at 4:18 PM on July 6, 2006


so much.laughing.oh.the.pain.
posted by ryran at 4:37 PM on July 6, 2006


I'm sure AstroZombie was joking. It did get me looking at what credits Richard has on imdb. Interestingly enough, there is a Dick Simmons who's been in a few movies that could easily be miscontrued as gay porn...



Seven Sweethearts (1942) as Paul Brandt, George's Beau
On An Island with You (1948)
Three Guys Named Mike (1951)
posted by nomisxid at 4:44 PM on July 6, 2006


Personally, I'm with you, JoeForking. I'd go with "Absolutely Fabulous," or Ali G., or Ricky Gervaise over the (perhaps unfairly stereotypical) "American" brand of 2-D pratfalling and pie-fucking humor. (Not that the effervescent Richard Simmons isn't a fountain of good-natured cheer, but I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who failed to find this sketch any funnier than one of your better Girl Scout skit nights.)

But laughter is joy, and we should all sap and savor every bit of it that we can. For seat-wetting hilarity may I suggest R. Kelly's "Trapped In The Closet", parts 1-12? ...Which is even funnier still because it was (apparently) intentional.
posted by applemeat at 4:53 PM on July 6, 2006


Hmph. It's no I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue.
posted by Len at 5:24 PM on July 6, 2006


I guess it's hard to laugh properly with the sticks wedged so far up, eh?
posted by fleacircus at 5:28 PM on July 6, 2006


As weird as Simmons is, I think he's a hell of a lot cooler and more sincere than John Basedow. You can snazz up your Fitness Made Simple theme song as much as you want, Mr. Basedow, but you're still scary.
posted by misskaz at 5:34 PM on July 6, 2006


Wow, this literally made me chuckle a little bit.
posted by Soulfather at 5:38 PM on July 6, 2006


I'm not kidding about Satyricon.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:19 PM on July 6, 2006


Two countries divided by jokes. I'd love to see a British Whose Line that had the audience in such stitches. It'd be like liquid comedy. Except to Germans.
posted by bonaldi at 7:37 PM on July 6, 2006


I confess that the first time I saw this I laughed so hard I nearly had a seizure. There. I said it.

Me too. I was just flipping through channels whle folding laundry and caught this episode and I ended up struggling for breath, I was laughing so hard. For some reason I didn't laugh much this time around but the first time? Complete hysterics.
posted by LeeJay at 8:13 PM on July 6, 2006


Jesus, I can't tell what's funnier: that clip or this thread. Seriously. This is funny shit.

Seriously!
posted by grubi at 8:48 PM on July 6, 2006


Bardic: Jesus, that Brady/Chapelle was totally Black Actor Training Day. Fucking THANK YOU for that one!
posted by trondant at 9:07 PM on July 6, 2006


I'll add my "remember when Whose Line is it Anyway? didn't keep lowering itself to jokes about sex?" to what I assume is a bunch above.
posted by Wataki at 9:36 PM on July 6, 2006


I loved it, thanks for daring to post it here.
posted by nostrada at 2:46 AM on July 7, 2006


Richard Simmons remains, to this day, the only other man that has put his arm in mine to be escorted across the street.

Taken aback for a split-second, I rallied and escorted him across. Once there, he withdrew his arm and we continued to walk on, discussing the project we were working on, as if it were the most common thing in the world.

He struck me as a cool guy all around, to be quite honest. A little prone to breaking out in show-tunes at odd moments, of course...not that there's anything wrong with that.
posted by darkstar at 5:33 AM on July 7, 2006 [1 favorite]


nomisxid, I believe classy was intended to mean "gentlemanly". I fail to see how what one wears defines whether or not someone is classy.


True story.
A friend's mother was flying back home after a trip and she bumped into Richard Simmons at the airport. She approached him and he made time to hear her story about how she worried about her son's severe obesity. He asked for her son's cell phone number and later when he had time, called and spoke to him for quite a while. He was in every way the compassionate and caring person you hear about.

He is, in fact, a class act.
posted by digibri at 10:33 AM on July 7, 2006 [1 favorite]


that was so funny my co-workers came to investigate!
posted by darsh at 12:28 PM on July 7, 2006


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