POINT PLEASANT BEACH, NJ (CelebrityAccess) – Uncle Vinnie’s Comedy Club, a BYOB destination in a small seaside town, experienced more excitement than usual at Saturday night’s show (October 8) featuring comedians Ariel Elias and Gianmarco Soresi.
Elias took the stage around 9:30 pm for her opening set when she noticed the audience was enjoying themselves – so she opened it up for a Question and Answer session – something she does to work the crowd and grab more laughs. But this time, a woman raised her hand from the back of the club and said, “Did you vote for Donald Trump?”
In speaking with Buzzfeed, Elias’s first thought at that question was, “Um, f*ck,” and then went to, “Why are you asking me this? What’s your endgame here?”
Elias, in the self-deprecating way comedians are famous for, answered her question, “Why would you ask me that knowing I’m the only Jew in this room? Are you trying to get me killed?!”
“So you voted for Biden?” the woman yells back. “I dunno. What does it matter?” Elias responds. “Yes, you did!” the heckler replies. “I could just tell by your jokes you voted for Biden.”
“I can tell by the fact that you’re still talking when nobody wants you to that you voted for Trump,” Elias responds, eliciting cheers from the crowd. (BURN, EPIC, HILARIOUS – writer)
I spoke with comedian Ariel Elias about this shocking moment showing her being heckled about voting for Biden, then having a beer can thrown at her — and what she did next.https://t.co/te4knheEXA https://t.co/FSBV1aT7Ch
— David Mack (@davidmackau) October 9, 2022
In an attempt to steer the show back on course with a story about getting an IUD inserted (after the woman complained to the club owners that she was being told to stop talking), a beer can was thrown onstage and made a hell of a sound as it hit the brick wall behind her.
Elias said, “At first, I was in shock. Did that really just happen?” she said. “And then I saw the beer can, and I was like, I mean, I have to drink this. Like, there’s nothing else I can do with this. This is the only way to recover. I have to drink it.
“So I drank it!”
As the crowd yelled things like, “Are you f*cking kidding me,” “You can’t do that,” and “Oh my God,” Elias lifted the beer can above her head and drank what was left inside to thunderous applause and cheers – then turns her heel and continues her set.
Patton Oswalt, known worldwide for his comedy, said, “Ariel wasn’t even doing political material. The drunk heckler was craving what every GAMA craves – grievance and revenge. And they’ll alter the reality before their eyes to get it. “You SOUND like you voted for Biden.”
Whitney Cummings, TV comedic star, said, “For all y’all who want to make fun of comics for saying we didn’t sign up to be physically attacked and put on a pedestal, take a peekie poo. @Ariel_Comedy, you’re a class act.”
Even talk show host and all-around “nice guy” Jimmy Kimmel had something to say:
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) October 9, 2022
Elias told NPR she was “overcome with adrenaline” but was determined to finish her set so she could hit her final punchline, which is also printed on her merchandise which is sold once the show is over. She said, “Well, I mean, I still want to make extra money tonight, so I have to do the joke!”
When she finally got offstage, Soresi (the headliner for the night) hugged her and asked if she was OK. She said one member of the rowdy group also came to apologize on behalf of their friends, while another gave her $20. Club owner Dino Ibelli called the local police Sunday morning and provided security footage to the Point Pleasant Beach Police Department.
Soresi said, “There’s this idea that the brave comedian is the one saying the thing we’re all thinking, and I’m like, just take a look at this video if you want to see what real bravery looks like as a comedian.”
Elias is the most recent in a string of attacks against comedians who chose to take the high road. “Slapgate” started it all when Will Smith thought it was a good idea to smack the hell out of Chris Rock during a live Oscars telecast because he didn’t like the joke. Dave Chappelle was attacked on stage with a fake gun with a knife attached to the end (that perpetrator got the shit beat out of him by security and deservedly so), and now Elias. What a shame that society can no longer take a joke, ANY joke, without getting butthurt.
In responding to all of the positive attention she’s received since the incident and the fact that the video is now viral, Elias (who has been in the business for 11 years) said, “I’ve been at this for a long time. It feels nice to have any positive recognition. Maybe it softens the blow — no pun intended — a little bit.”
Show some respect, or don’t GO to a comedy show, asshole.