Bob Saget’s opening act pays tribute to his comedy hero with a little help from Netflix
Comedian Bob Saget had major success in living a life filled with positivity, kindness and dick jokes. His unexpected death last January sent shockwaves through the comedy community. Six months later, a tribute stage was set by a group of Saget’s closest friends.
On June 10, “Dirty Daddy: The Bob Saget Tribute” premieres on Netflix, showing one magical night when the somber turned joyous while reminiscing about Saget at the Comedy Store in West Hollywood, the same place Bob’s career began more than 40 years prior.
John Stamos, Jeff Ross, Chris Rock, John Mayer, Jim Carrey, Dave Chappelle, Mike Young, Seth Green, Bob’s wife Kelly Rizzo and others took to the stage to celebrate and honor a piece of their heart for the tribute special.
Comedian Mike Young had the privilege of touring with Saget for 12 years and spoke with The Times about trying to figure out an organic way to talk about his comedy hero in his own stand-up set. “People know me from Bob. I’ve been in front of a half a million people because of Bob,” Young told The Times. “He took me out there and I have to give tribute. It’s just going to take time to figure out how to cultivate the act and do him justice.”
It feels like such a gift that this tribute show is coming out. Many mixed emotions, but it’ll be great for fans who want to celebrate the life of a superstar who made strangers feel like family.
Mike Young: It’s so good to hear that because Bob was like, first and foremost, “I want to be good to people.” I mean, when’s the last time you saw a tribute going on like this? Bob was a special dude. Everyone says that when someone passes, but he was the greatest. John Mayer said it the best at the tribute, “I can’t believe somebody that was so here, is gone.” To me that meant Bob was just so damn present. Was he neurotic sometimes? Of course. Did he try to get me to tell him what I wanted for dinner two weeks ahead of going to West Palm Beach? He was beyond. But he did all of that because he wanted to take care of people.
How was the energy in the room the night of Bob’s tribute?
The vibe in the Comedy Store was all love for Bob. We had just had the funeral, and then had a small tribute privately. So, the mood was like, let’s give one more major goodbye. In one fell swoop, the world lost so much comedy. So much joy. The irony is, a lot of comics are negative and pick apart the angry, but that’s not what Bob was. That’s not what Gilbert, Louie or Norm were. It’s just a tragedy anyway you cut it. They weren’t negative dudes that rant about what they hate. Love was Bob’s thing. He was going through this thing the last couple of years where he was like, “I not doing negative anymore. I’m only doing positive stuff.” That was his whole theme.
Obviously we know you guys were out on tour, but were you working on anything on the side?
Bob was working on putting together his special, and he was so excited about it. He was starting to crack open so much new material for himself and all he was thinking about was his special. That’s a real crazy part of this whole thing, how excited he was about stand-up comedy again. I also directed a movie, so I wanted Bob in my movie. I remember going back and forth with him like, “Bob I got a great part for you!” He was like, “How many pages is it?” He wanted to be a lead, and my cast is in their early 30s.
Well, he was definitely young at heart and in spirit! What would you say to younger fans who are just stumbling across Bob Saget?
I would say, you’re welcome! Bob is a seasoned, 45-year-in-the-game pro who you’re going to love. We actually started selling more and more tickets in the last couple of years because, well, things go through phases. When Bob came off “Entourage,” boom! We’re playing theaters. Then there’s a little lull where you’re playing clubs, but you’re still selling out clubs. Bob always sold out clubs even though he was always nervous he wouldn’t. Then the fans started to become a younger base of hip, smart comedy lovers. I think they liked Bob because they could see through the BS that was an image. He’s crazy witty and always has a comeback, so he’s got to be one of us! Bob was a hyper-intelligent nerd. He was like a nerd-stud. He didn’t come from cool. He was a deli clerk that became cool.
I hope reading this gets more deli clerks laid. Have you heard of any plans to memorialize Bob around the L.A. clubs?
I’ll bet you there will be a one-year anniversary. Other than that, I haven’t heard of anything just yet. I just heard about the Netflix tribute a month ago when Mike Binder called me to say, “Netflix is picking this up and please sign the release!”
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