Illustrated Comediennes of the Stand-Up Boom: Rita Rudner

In the rush of the 80s-90s stand-up boom, newly-emerging pay-cable began augmenting their normally scheduled soft-core pornography and repeated showing of horror movie Cat’s Eye with stand-up showcases. Dyna Moe watched every one of them and presents a week-long tribute of the comediennes of era.

Rita Rudner is a petite, pretty brunette who delivered thoughts on men, family, and love with a measured, but spacey delivery staring somewhere ten feet above the audience’s head.

Relevant Specials: Born to Be Mild, Married Without Children

Mode of Dress: Perhaps a carry-over from her former career as a dancer, her clothes were far more fashionable, body-conscious and feminine than the default comedienne uniform. This usually runs towards the kind of understated but classy velour separates you’d wear to a jazzy funeral.

Sample Joke: “My husband gave me a necklace. It’s fake. I requested fake. Maybe I’m paranoid, but in this day and age, I don’t want something around my neck that’s worth more than my head.”

Commercial endorsements: Before her standup career took off, she appeared in a yogurt commercial. She included this commercial in one of her specials. It is not on the internet as far as I can find

Essential Trivia: After marrying Martin Bergman, she worked more in England. She had a sketch show on British TV and co-wrote/appeared in Peter’s Friends, a 1992 movie which is just like The Big Chill only British and Stephen Fry has AIDS.

What is she doing now: Headlining in Vegas, baby. Here’s her website (warning: a mini Rita-pixie appears and starts doing standup at you).

Bonus Video: I have no idea of the provenience of this clip, but it somehow involves The Amazing Jonathan

Dyna Moe is a reluctant illustrator and lapsed comedy person. Her next project is The Buscemi of The Month Club. Twitter is the only thing she cares about.

From Our Partners