Is Katt Williams pulling an Andy Kaufman prank, or is his career just taking a seriously weird turn?

Ever since Katt Williams announced he was “retiring” from stand-up comedy, he still has managed to pop up in the headlines from time to time, but never for good news on his part. Arrests. Altercations. Strange incidents. Actually, Williams had been finding himself on the wrong side of the headline and the law even while his career was still going strong — the last time I talked to him face-to-face, after all, he had emerged from a day-and-night-long stint in a New York City jail cell after an arrest over guns that prevented Williams from a guest spot on Late Night with Conan O’Brien and delayed his appearance at a Carnegie Hall performance.

Williams had a right to be fatigued and more than a bit punchy during our conversation back then.

But now, in the summer of 2011?

I don’t know what to make of what Katt Williams is up to these days. It’s either some sort of performance art stunt, a la Andy Kaufman, in which Williams has decided to do whatever he wants on stage and let the audience try to figure out what to make of it. Or Williams needs some serious therapy, both professionally for his career and personally for his state of mind.

In June, Williams appeared at a show in Albuquerque that misled audience members into thinking they were getting the old Katt Williams, stand-up comedian, instead of the new Katt Williams.

Earlier this month, his headlining gig at the Improv in Ontario, Calif., didn’t last the weekend, as the club decided it had had enough of Williams before his second show Saturday and replaced him with the feature act.

Then he took his act to Phoenix, where he was fanning the flames of a fist-fight behind part of the stage involving his own bodyguards during a Young Jeezy concert at the Celebrity Theatre.

Williams and his entourage interrupted the concert with their departure. This video overlaps with the end of the first one above.

And then when it came time for Williams to perform at the same in-the-round venue in Phoenix, he decided to trade verbal abuse with a Mexican-American audience member, telling him that if he likes Mexico so much, he should move back there, and so on, and so forth, and roll the clip.

Again. Who knows what’s really going on inside Katt’s head? Why does he do his stand-up now with a bunch of women lying down on the stage, next to a statue of a bald eagle?!? What the what is going on?

Please tell Katt to get in touch with The Comic’s Comic so we can straighten this whole thing out.

UPDATED: Katt Williams issued an apology late Wednesday through his publicist, saying, “My remarks were not meant to be offensive. I want to apologize if my comedy act was taken out of context. I sincerely appreciate my fans within the Mexican community and would never intentionally go out of my way to offend them.”


Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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2 thoughts on “Is Katt Williams pulling an Andy Kaufman prank, or is his career just taking a seriously weird turn?

  1. The biggest lie was “my remarks were not intended to offend.” Of course they were meant to offend. They weren’t meant to offend Mexicans, though. They were just meant to offend the heckler, and his being Mexican was the instrument used to offend. It’s the same thing as the Michael Richards remark. Both comedians had a heckler, and got frustrated, because a heckler is interfering with the ability to do what the comedian loves, so it’s an attack that feels personal and hurtful, so they both wanted to respond to their respective hecklers in an equally personal and hurtful manner. What’s an easy way to hurt someone on a personal level? Attack their race.

    Both outbursts, I think, were just knee-jerk reactions to the frustrations born from getting heckled, and both lept to the most extreme measure possible to make sure the heckler felt hurt. They wanted to offend because it was, to them, an act of self-defense. But because they were so swept up in emotions, they didn’t think of the possible scope of their offensive act. So they said something effective, but really dumb.

    1. But he didn’t call him racist names…..he called him out of his name… was wrong but two totally different situations

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