Here’s the thing about Don Rickles. No one else can get away with that kind of humor anymore. He’s the legend. He’s the guy who made insult comedy an art form. He’s the only old, white, Jewish guy I know who can get away with making jokes about Blacks, Puerto Ricans, “Polacks”, Jews, Asians… no one is safe.
And no one was safe when he played the Paramount. I wanted to crawl under my seat when even the guy in the wheelchair made it into the line of fire – Yikes. Was that funny? Can he say that? Evidently yes… even the people being picked on laughed. And I guess that is what makes him a legend…
Off stage he was every bit the gentleman and even a bit of a softy. “Hey Ken. Did they like me out there tonight?”
Pretty much anyone who waited on him, drove him, opened a door for him, or just looked at him nicely got a tip or a handwritten thank you note. He brought a little bit of that old Vegas-Rat-Pack showmanship to the Paramount. If you were at the show and got a little offended then maybe we should just agree that what happens at the Paramount, stays at the Paramount.