Some people found him a bit too baudy, even vulgar, but for most comedy fans, George Carlin helped take the edge off of the grind of many frustrating and stressful days.
Carlin died yesterday of heart failure, after a long and celebrated career of stand-up comedy, television and movie appearances.
What separated Carlin from most comics was his ability to take sensitive subjects, like abortion and obesity, and make them funny, even to pro lifers and overweight people. Carlin understood who he was and believed his devout fans also got him.
“I have a kind of identity that I’ve carved out as my own, and people know that,” Carlin told the Daily Press in 2002. “I have this theatrically angry voice some of the time in my show, an aggressive tone, but I think people still see me as a kind of vulnerable person — an open, honest person laying it all out for your inspection.”
No critic could have put it better.