The world of stand-up comedy is not known to be kind. Competition usually wins over comradery. But when news of beloved "Weekend Update" anchor and comedian Norm Macdonald broke yesterday, that stereotype was turned on its head, as love poured out from fellow comedians across social media.
Today is a sad day. All of us here at SNL mourn the loss of Norm Macdonald, one of the most impactful comedic voice… https://t.co/EwAJgO8fdc— Saturday Night Live - SNL (@Saturday Night Live - SNL) 1631656608.0
In every important way, in the world of stand-up, Norm was the best. An opinion shared by me and all peers. Alway… https://t.co/TVcBpza3yR— David Letterman (@David Letterman) 1631652250.0
Norm's success was prolific to say the least. In addition to his stand-up and SNL career, MacDonald appeared in numerous films, including Grown Ups, Dr. Dolittle, Jack and Jill, Billy Madison, Funny People, Screwed, and The Animal. He also appeared in various late-night talk shows including Late Night With Conan O'Brien and Late Night with David Letterman, and even had his own sitcom, The Norm Show, as well as a talk show for one season on Netflix back in 2018.
The Norm Show (Norm) - Season 1 Episode 1 (Norm and the Prototype) www.youtube.com
A true comedy genius, Norm could make even the most convoluted story funny, as seen in Norm's unforgettable "Moth Joke" with Conan O'Brien.
Norm MacDonald's Moth Joke www.youtube.com
O'Brien was one of the first to react to the news of Norm's death, praising him as "the most unique comic voice I have ever encountered" and lamenting that "I will never laugh that hard again."
I am absolutely devastated about Norm Macdonald. Norm had the most unique comedic voice I have ever encountered and… https://t.co/3LjiZFOxHK— Conan O'Brien (@Conan O'Brien) 1631648335.0
Bob Saget, who Norm famously roasted, also sent a tweet sharing how he and Norm met, "he was in my audience at 17 years old," and went on to say " no other voice in comedy has been as unique, brazen, brazen, dark, hilarious, and heartfelt."
Devastated. Met Norm in Ottawa when he was in my audience at 17 years old. Been close for decades. We have lost a c… https://t.co/Va8cwfMJIl— bob saget (@bob saget) 1631655381.0
Jim Carrey, who appeared on Norm's live show, gave heartfelt mourning, saying, "my dear friend Norm passed after a brave 10 year battle...He was one of our most precious gems...I love him."
My dear friend Norm MacDonald passed after a brave 10 year battle. He was one of our most precious gems. An honest… https://t.co/bfrQHdB4DV— Jim Carrey (@Jim Carrey) 1631646463.0
But the tributes don't stop there. Comedy greats like Steve Martin, all the Seths (McFarland, Rogan, and Meyers), Adam Sandler, Patton Oswalt, Jon Stewart and even Bob Odenkirk-who had his own health scare earlier this year- all sent their praises flooding to Twitter.
Every one of us loved Norm. Some of the hardest laughs of my life with this man. Most fearless funny original guy w… https://t.co/YpZdWeOd6O— Adam Sandler (@Adam Sandler) 1631650542.0
“He was the gold standard.” @SethMeyers reflects on the passing of comedy legend Norm Macdonald. https://t.co/kvxi01VN7Z— Late Night with Seth Meyers (@Late Night with Seth Meyers) 1631667637.0
To so many people in comedy, me included, there was nobody funnier than Norm MacDonald. You always hoped he would h… https://t.co/qkJzVEHTZY— Seth MacFarlane (@Seth MacFarlane) 1631647928.0
Truly one of the funniest moments on TV. That was awesome, Norm ruled https://t.co/ZqmwyCpGtY— Mr. Bob Odenkirk (@Mr. Bob Odenkirk) 1631647396.0
This not only goes to show how far reaching and impactful Norm was as a talent, but how just one person's individual spark can ignite the hearts and minds of many others.
NOOOOO GODDAMIT. Oh my God what is even happening. Good bye, Norm. You were never not 100% hilarious. https://t.co/loW3QsEjgW— Patton Oswalt (@Patton Oswalt) 1631644592.0
No one could make you break like Norm Macdonald. Hilarious and unique. Fuck cancer.— Jon Stewart (@Jon Stewart) 1631645135.0
Oh fuck. I was a huge fan of Norm Macdonald and I essentially ripped off his delivery when I first started acting.… https://t.co/gkzaoIVuLt— Seth Rogen (@Seth Rogen) 1631644634.0
Norm passed away after an undisclosed nine year battle with cancer. His longtime producing partner and friend, Lori Jo Hoekstra, who was with him when he died, says "He never wanted the diagnosis to affect the way the audience or any of his loved ones saw him....He once wrote that 'a joke should catch someone by surprise, it should never pander.' He certainly never pandered. Norm will be missed terribly."
Though Norm might have struggled in private, the comedy world is publicly coming together to acknowledge the positive impact he made in an industry that can, at its worst, be a toxic environment. The collective reaction to Norm's passing proves that at its best, however, the stand-up community is a tight knight family of creatives who relish in each other's successes and share in each other's remorse. Even in a time of devastating loss, that is worth celebrating.
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