Dinged for his bald head, mediocre music, and Oscar-free career of playing cops and ex-cops, Bruce Willis became the latest target of Comedy Central’s annual roasts on Saturday.
Even his ex-wife Demi Moore joined in on the abuse. After enduring a barrage of off-color yuks from roasters like Kevin Pollak, Edward Norton, Cybill Shepherd, Lil Rel Howery, and Martha Stewart, Willis got an earful from Moore, who was brought out as a surprise guest for the roast that was taped at the Hollywood Palladium. Though visibly nervous, Moore seemed to enjoy making fun of her 12-year union to Willis while their three daughters — Rumer, Scout, and Tallulah — clapped and howled from the audience.
“I was married to Bruce for the first three Die Hard movies, which makes sense because the last two sucked,” Moore quipped. “Bruce considered the end of our marriage his biggest failure. Bruce, don’t be so hard on yourself, you had much bigger failures. Planet Hollywood, Hudson Hawk…campaigning for Michael Dukakis, turning down Clooney’s role in Ocean’s Eleven to focus on playing the harmonica.”
Roast master Joseph Gordon-Levitt kicked off the show with a few decent bon mots of his own: “Bruce can play anyone from an asshole cop to an asshole ex-cop.” He then handed over the reins to the panel, which also included comedians Jeff Ross, Nikki Glaser, and Dom Irrera and a rather obnoxious Dennis Rodman, who stumbled through his ribald set.
Given his conservative politics, Willis was mostly spared from any MAGA jokes and was poked, instead, for his prima donna reputation. Norton, in particular, was brilliant as he described how Willis always got away with leaving set early and forcing his co-stars to do their lines to a stand-in sign.
Willis, 63, had the last laugh, though. As is always the case, the honoree gets a monologue of his own — and yes, he brought his harmonica. “If you are a fan of Bruce Willis movies, and I know you are, I get the shit beat out of me for an hour and a half, and then I come back and beat everyone’s ass,” he said. “Buckle up, it’s ass whippin’ time!”
Here are 20 of the more brutal jokes of the night:
“Bruce Willis is what you get if you drain the white part of Dwayne Johnson.” -Gordon-Levitt
“Is this going to be on Netflix? I want people to see it.” -Glaser
“Martha Stewart, congratulations for getting that Thai soccer team out of your vagina and into your sweat shops.” -Glaser
“Your daughters must be so proud of their father, Ashton Kutcher.” -Glaser
“Ed Norton used to run around back in the day with Courtney Love. Perhaps I should say that in a more respectful way. Ed Norton has AIDS.” -Pollak
“Lil Rel, I’ve been meaning to apologize for calling the police about your barbecue.” -Shepherd
“Hollywood wouldn’t be Hollywood if they didn’t reward a man for aging into mediocrity.” -Shepherd
“On Moonlighting, I played a former model, which I was, and Bruce played an asshole, which he is. Bruce and I were really attracted to each other…we had our ups and downs, just not the ins and outs. It was perfect formula for success. We may not have had a conversation in 30 years, but we’ll have something more important. Residuals.” -Shepherd
“When I look at Dennis Rodman, I immediately think of the n-word. Nuclear war. If you told me back in the ’90s that Dennis would be negotiating a nuclear disarmament treaty with North Korea in 2018, I would have thought, ‘Dennis Rodman is alive in 2018?'” -Stewart
“We have so so many celebrities here. Men from movies, women from TV, and Lil Rel Howery from, let me guess, the California Raisins?” -Stewart
“Bruce and I live in the same town of Bedford. He has a beautiful house and the interior design is amazing. He wanted everything inside to look mid-century modern, except his new wife.” -Stewart
“Kevin Pollack, what the f— is my chiropractor doing here?” -Rodman
“Dennis Rodman, you look like the genie when you rub a magic crack pipe.” -Irrera
“Comedy Central roasts only the best people. Bruce, Donald Trump, that guy from Baywatch.” -Irrera
“Tonight we honor the reason the world has a Vin Diesel. F— you.” -Ross
“I met Rumer. I guess that’s the name you give when you’re not 100 percent sure who the dad is.” -Ross
“I can’t wait to see your next project, Die Hard 6: Natural Causes.” -Ross
“I look at our marriage like The Sixth Sense. You were dead the whole time.” -Moore
“Joseph played a younger me in Looper. He couldn’t pull it off. There is one actor who successfully played me. It was Demi Moore.” – Willis
“Cybill, it’s so great to be back on TV with you, honey, on another show starring me.” -Willis
The Comedy Central Roast of Bruce Willis airs July 29 on Comedy Central.