Roseanne Barr was asked what people are going to learn about her on Last Comic Standing that they didn't know before.
“That I’m a mouthy bitch,” Barr said. “People may not have known that.”
Hmmm, if you know Roseanne at all, your sarcasm meter should have just gone into the red.
But interestingly, when Last Comic Standing returns Thursday, May 22 on NBC, it's Barr who'll be doing the learning, alongside fellow judges Russell Peters and Keenen Ivory Wayans.
“There are so many different kinds of standup and so many different kinds of clubs, but I was thinking that it was pretty static and kind of boring, actually, over these last few years,” Barr admitted. “But becoming a judge on this show, I'm seeing people who actually are writing jokes that I’ve never heard before.
“It’s kind of exciting. I’ve never heard these premises. It’s very brave. And it’s cool. So that brought me back into comedy. I feel really old. It’s like when I need my computer fixed, I call my 13 year-old grandson. This is like a rebirth of comedy. Certainly including this show, but all over the place. There’s a whole different everything. It’s kind of like punk rock.”
Along with the three new judges, J.B. Smoove is the new host of Last Comic Standing, which also will feature guest mentors such as Amy Schumer, Howie Mandel and Wanda Sykes. This technically is the eighth season of the show, but it hasn't been on the air since 2010.
Barr had said fairly recently that she had no interest in doing TV again, but she stressed she meant regular scripted fare, not being a judge on something such as Last Comic Standing.
“Well, this isn’t a sitcom,” clarified Barr, whose classic sitcom Roseanne aired nine seasons from 1988 to 1997. “I’m not having my brains raked over the coals. I’m laughing. And I’m getting awesome (food) service and nice outfits.”
When asked if she might fall into the category of the mean judge or the nice judge or whatever, Barr simply said “intelligent” to describe her judging style.
“I’m just me,” she said. “I didn’t, like, try to copy somebody else.”
So how would the 61-year-old Barr have done on Last Comic Standing had it existed when she was breaking into show business?
“I would’ve won,” Barr said. “I did, in fact, win the Denver Laugh-Off, and that's what kind of propelled my career. And I did a number of other comedy contests that weren't televised.
“I think I would’ve really worked hard. I wouldn't have become part of any contest unless I was really prepared and thought I could win. And that’s what I think we have here. Well, we’re seeing who’s prepared and who isn’t prepared.
“Of course, I have to say I would’ve won. Because you have to have that kind of self-confidence being a standup comic. You have to really believe in what you do and that you’re the best at doing what you do. We’ve seen a lot of people on this show come in like that and falter. But the ones who want it the most are the ones who make it.”