The Hammerstein Ballroom was packed to the brim with wannabes, has-beens and the occasional celebrity last night, as Comedy Central taped its roast of Donald Trump.
The roast, which will air next Tuesday, saw a lineup of comedians like Lisa Lampanelli and Jeff Ross, join some celebrity roasters like Marlee Matlin, Larry King and Snoop Dogg to mock one another and Trump himself.
Also in attendance: Jersey Shore’s Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino, but more on him later.
Trump, who made (and lost) billions in real estate and casinos, and is said to be considering a Republican presidential run, spent much of the night in a chair in the middle of the stage, glowering, as his daughter Ivanka and wife Melania watched from the audience. FishbowlNY also spotted John Legend, Ice-T, Norah Jones and Russell Simmons in the crowd.
The tables were stocked with pitches of beer and wine, along with nuts, pretzels and potato chips, which were all being constantly refilled by women dressed as Miss USA contestants (Trump owns the Miss USA Pageant).
Finally, a little after 7:30, the show began. Roast-master Seth MacFarlane (yes, the creator of “Family Guy”) got things started, and introduced the roasters as they took their turns slinging barbs.
The highlights: Matlin (!!), Lampanelli and Ross all turned in strong performances, as did comedians Anthony Jeselnik and Whitney Cummings.
The lowlights: The Situation. Oh, Situation, what an awful situation that was. Lacking in comedic timing or delivery, the crowd began to get antsy with his performance, forcing Ross to go up to the podium to try and save the day. It will be interesting to see what gets cut from this tragic performance.
Former CNN anchor Larry King delivered his lines as if he were taking calls from viewers at the end of his talk show, with the occasional commercial break: “Try Garlique! Goes down easy, like Whitney Cummings.”
“Before we go, lets go to Anderson Cooper and see what she has coming up tonight.”
King was also the source of many jokes for the other roasters. Among the best:
“Please welcome a chattering pirate skeleton on loan from Disney Land, Larry King”-MacFarlane
“Don’t worry Larry, it’s almost over. And I don’t mean the roast,”-Lampanelli
“You are so boring, that when you were getting your colonoscopy even your doctor switched to Fox”-Jeselnik
The taping ended a little after 10 PM, at which point the crowd took shuttle buses to Gotham Hall for the after-party, where giant Trump-emblazoned bars awaited, along with much-needed food.
After that, things get hazy…