The first clips from Justin Bieber’s Comedy Central Roast on Saturday are here.
Do the edits reveal any of the X-rated, brutal jokes that went down? Will the singer’s public skewering on national TV finally put an end to the ludicrous levels of hate his past, teen-like antics invoke in many?
At the very least, the over four-hour takedown of the Canadian by comedians and figures such as Get Hard actor and roast master host Kevin Hart, Martha Stewart, Will Ferrell as Ron Burgundy, Snoop Dogg and Saturday Night Live newcomer Pete Davidson, prompted the roast master general Jeffrey Ross to tell Justin he had “balls,” in the press conference immediately after the pounding.
And judging by the amount of gags on the night slamming Justin as a “p****” or a “lesbian” — that’s progress.
One thing we do know isn’t in the first-look clips are any references to the late actor Paul Walker. Irreverent jokes about Walker that were made by three roasters have been cut out and will not be shown in the March 30 broadcast.
A Comedy Central spokesperson informed The Hollywood Reporter, “Roasts often push the limits of good taste, and we give the participants full reign to try things knowing we have the edit to shape the show.”
They added, “Sometimes the line is discovered by crossing it. The Paul Walker references will not be in the telecast.”
The former Fast and Furious star died in a car crash on November 30, 2013. A source told THR that Walker’s co-star and friend, the rapper Ludacris — who was one of the roasters — was furious at the jokes.
For the Biebs’ part, the singer voiced his own personal discomfort over the Walker gags in the post-show presser, and said he “didn’t particularly like the Paul Walker jokes” when he was asked which insults he thought went too far.
In the first clip, Kevin Hart set the scene for the crowd. He promised, “Tonight, we’re going to do what his parents and the legal system should have done a long time ago.
Hart added, “We’re about to give this boy an a** whooping that he deserves. We are. We are!”
“Why invite me if you don’t want it to get ugly? I don’t understand that,” he hyped, just as the camera pans to longtime Bieber pal Jaden Smith, who is seen swivelling around in his chair while Kendall Jenner looks on, as the audience whooped at Hart’s threats of verbal barbarity against the Biebs.
In the second clip, we get a tiny peek of Ross’ set.
After the video was posted, it actually triggered a trending topic on Twitter with the hashtag “IHaveMyPeriodJustin.” Here’s why.
— Jeff Ross (@realjeffreyross) March 17, 2015
“Justin, I feel like I’m roasting you for the entire world tonight,” Ross began. “The roast fans really want blood this time, even though most of your fans haven’t even gotten their periods yet.”
“But if you can take a joke, then so can the Beliebers watching tonight. Because, face it Biebs, you’ve become a cocky little s***. You’re the King Joffrey of pop,” Ross added.
The crowd can be heard laughing while Justin looks nervous at one point. He then smiled and opened his hands at the last insult, as if in agreement.
— Alex Stedman (@a_sted) March 15, 2015
From most reports, Justin was a good sport about his televised humiliation. Although some few commentators found fault with the roast, overall, those who went praised the show as riotously funny and wild.
It remains to be seen what else will follow the Paul walker jokes to the cutting room floor.
[Images via Getty Images/Kevin Mazur]