On the whole, comedians have always held a unique, ticklish little place in our hearts, but a very select few blow the hell up and capture all of our hearts completely. For a time, that is. So what happened? How did our collective adoration of a great comedian turn to a collective eye-roll, head-shake, and dare we say, straight up disdain? 

They transcended the world of comedy and became pop culture icons along with world renowned actors and musicians, but as they’d quickly learn, fame is a double-edged sword. The eyes aren’t just watching you on stage… They’re watching your every move. So you better be a genuinely decent person and meet a few criteria. 1) Have nothing sinister to hide. 2) Don’t let fame and wealth go directly to your head. 3) Don’t think that just because we like your jokes, we’ll get on board with any ridiculous political agenda or hate speech you start spewing. If only these comedians had those rules in their back pockets. Here are 13 once-loved comedians who completely fell from grace (and why).

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Sorry Michael, it’s impossible to come back from this one.

CRACKED MICHAEL RICHARDS' HORRIFYINGLY RACIST TIRADE. While on stage, a camera captured him repeatedly calling the heckler the N word, and saying, Fifty years ago they'd have you hanging upside down with a f***ing fork up your ass! Не apologized on Letterman, but it dug a deeper hole.

Fox News / IMDB 

How can you deny all that video evidence, Carlos?

CRACKED CARLOS MENCIA STILL WON'T ADMIT HIS JOKE THIEVERY. After two HBO specials and his own very popular show Mind of Mencia, his career was derailed in the mid 2000s after many accusations proved him to be arguably the biggest joke thief in comedy history. Не still wouldn't admit it on Bobby Lee's podcast in 2021.

Ranker / AZ Central 

Some careers were made on Trump jokes. Others were completely destroyed.

CRACKED KATHY GRIFFIN WENT WAY TOO FAR WITH A TRUMP JOKE. In 2017, she posed for a picture while holding an effigy of Trump's severed head. She was fired from several TV and live performances, and was investigated by the DoJ for conspiracy to assassinate the President. She said she hasn't worked since.

Sports Keeda

Roseanne may not have gotten 10 seasons if Twitter existed in the 90s.

CRACKED #Ross OSE ROSEANNE'S TWEETS. Her original sitcom was #1 in ratings in the early '90s, and even the reboot's pilot got 18.2 million viewers, but after her racist tweet likened Valerie Jarrett to an аре, she was killed off with an opioid overdose, and The Conners lived on for 5 seasons without her.

NY Times

Kind of a silly name for a villain.

CRACKED FATTY ARBUCKLE WAS AN ACCUSED RAPIST AND A MURDERER. Не was one of the biggest stars of the silent film era, but was charged with the rape and murder of Virginia Rappe in 1921. Не was acquitted, but the eyewitness account was damning. It ended his career and overshadowed his legacy as a pioneering comedian.


That whole “be kind” motto was all for show.

CRACKED ELLEN WAS ONCE AMONG THE TOP STANDUPS IN THE GAME. From Johnny Carson to her own sitcom, Ellen was once beloved the world over. After allegations of racism, sexual harassment and bullying on her show, Ellen was done. A Twitter thread asked people to share stories of Ellen being mean, and it got over 2,600 replies.

Buzzfeed News / Fox 

Everybody’s jumping ship, Graham.

CRACKED GRAHAM LINEHAN VS. THE TRANS COMMUNITY. The Irish comedy writer co-created The IT Crowd, Father Ted and Black Books, and is currently a very outspoken anti-transgender activist. He's said that his views have cost him work and his marriage.


Maybe after The Animal, he was wary of “experimentation.”

CRACKED ROB SCHNEIDER WAS ANTI-VAX WAY BEFORE IT WAS COOL. Once known for SNL, Deuce Bigelow and The Hot Chick, he's currently becoming more known for lobbying against vaccines, and urging people to just say no to the COVID-19 shot (which he called experimental gene therapy.)

LA Times / Fox 

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