Justin Bieber Set For Hardcore, ‘No Holds Barred’ Roast: Why That’s Great

Justin Bieber is stepping up for real in his upcoming Comedy Central roast, according to a spokesperson for the network who told The Hollywood Reporter,

“Everything is fair game – no holds barred/no strings attached.”

Since Tuesday’s announcement by Ryan Seacrest and a press release with a tongue-in-cheek statement from Kent Alterman, the president of content development and original programming for the network, some media comment and general public has been cynical about how far the roast will actually go.

It has escaped no-one that there is an obvious upside and PR value to Bieber being seen to be able to “take a joke” in what is a critical comeback year for the singer, as he gears up to release a new album this year which he says he intends to tour.

Justin Bieber
(Photo: The Biebs seen in one of his many selfies)

All of that depends on sales. Island Records are unlikely to underwrite a tour for an under-selling album, even one produced by Rick Rubin. So Bieber has to sell. To do that, he has to convince fans who may have fallen away and the rest of the buying public that he really has accepted responsibility for his missteps.

Never mind the fact that this young boy-man has been made to eat his mistakes again and again in significantly, skewed negative, often invented media reports for nearly two years.

What the public and the majority of media observers want to see, is Bieber humiliated on national television. Because the collective — rightly or wrongly — believes the singer has escaped any real consequence for his transgressions..

What Comedy Central is promising viewers is gladiatorial comedy. Difficult topics — such as Bieber’s ended romance with former girlfriend Selena Gomez, those racially insensitive videos, urinating in a mop bucket, his arrests, strip club visits, that deposition, that monkey saga, the house-egging, the alleged photoshopping of his Calvin Klein ads, and more — will all be on the table.

First thoughts?

We’re going to need a bigger roast. But, in all seriousness, although an open season roast of Bieber by multiple comedians appears a harsh thing for a just turned 21-year-old (taping is set for March 7, six days after his 21st birthday) — at this stage of the Biebs’ uphill climb back to non-fan public acceptance, that’s exactly what needs to happen.

For a seasoned superstar like Bieber, whose marijuana-fogged stumble through 2013 and first half of 2014 made him a punchline — the singer has reportedly now stopped smoking weed — he knows the stakes. He also knows the Comedy Central roast is an opportunity to cut through the headlines and show the public he is on the joke he has become, and is now ready to move past that dead-end.

The public didn’t get a chance to see the “humanized” Bieber in his Believe movie, which was essentially an infomercial billed as something deeper. Now, perhaps, they will.

Before Bieber can enjoy anything like the kind of audience love he received from 2009-12, before the arena boos can subside, he needs to endure a roasting the likes of which, may make roasts of predecessors such as Donald Trump, Charlie Sheen and James Franco — look like a Disney movie in comparison.

“By allowing himself to be the butt of roast jokes, he regains control of them,” New York Daily News writes.

Perfectly said.

[Images via The Hollywood Reporter/ Instagram]