Shecky Greene quits Friars Club over Gilbert Gottfried joke?!

The Friars Club has a legacy as an institution for no-holds-barred comedy and a celebration of such.

So when the Friars feted Freddie Roman upon the end of his 20-year-reign as the Dean of the Friars Club, Gilbert Gottfried decided to unleash a barrage of “unprintable” material to the assembled audience. Barry Dougherty, the Friars communications director, shot the above photo of Gottfried on Monday night and typed to Twitter: “killing at Friars salute to Freddie Roman/Stewie Stone–unprintable, of course!”

Alas, ’twas too much for 88-year-old Shecky Greene. Allegedly.

Greene, a nightclub stand-up star in Las Vegas from the 1950s and 1960s, went on the Ron and Fez show on SiriusXM on Tuesday to tell his side of the story. “I think I liked him better as a duck,” Greene squawked. Of Gottfried’s routine that night, Greene said: “So now…he gets on and goes into a tirade, and jokes— but so filthy -— can I tell you something? I was in the Navy and I was with the tough guys and everything -– I never heard that kind of language…And he got dirtier and dirtier so I got up and I said ‘That’s it.’”

Roman, Greene said, was fine with it.

Shecky Greene, circa 2011:


Gottfried, meanwhile, quipped to friends: “Shecky Greene got up from his chair and left during my act. I’m amazed that Shecky Greene can actually get up from his chair.”

Gottfried otherwise has been mum about the actual jokes he told Monday night. Tonight, however, he’ll be guest-starring in something equally horrifying, perhaps, on Dinner with Friends with Brett Gelman and Friends on Adult Swim.

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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