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Creator / Bill Burr

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"I have a temper, that's what kinda ruins things..."

William Frederick Burr (born June 10, 1968) is a short tempered, pasty, alabaster-skinned, freckled, orange-haired stand up comedian and actor from (the safe suburbs of) Boston.

His comedy is frequently concerned with pointing out and mocking perceived Double Standards, especially with American culture. He also loves mocking the rigid standards imposed on men by the masculine ideal, and shows open contempt for the notion that Women Are Wiser. In spite of his words, he is a nice guy, deep down.

Did we mention he's been involved with some amazing shows, like Breaking Bad and Chappelle's Show?

He also is a co-creator, producer, writer, and voice actor on F is for Family, his original animated comedy series on Netflix; he plays the main protagonist Frank Murphy. He also guest-starred on (of all things) The Mandalorian as the short-tempered sharpshooter Mayfeld, and did voice work for the animated film Leo.

His work features examples of:

  • All Men Are Perverts: Strongly believes that men's greatest weakness is sex drive, but doesn't buy All Women Are Prudes, just that women control themselves better.
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!:
    • Fought against the idea of having ADHD for a long time, until he was having an emotional moment about Patrice O'Neal, a deceased friend and fellow comic. During the conversation, he looked at the ceiling, noticed a spider, and completely went off in another direction about the spider. When he looked away from the spider to his wife, whom he had been talking with, the look on her face finally let it sink in that he has ADHD.
    • On an his podcast, his wife tries to give him an ADD test out of a magazine. Listening to him try to do the test is priceless.
  • Author Tract: His products, like F is for Family and Old Dads, have themes of Breaking the Cycle of Bad Parenting and Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse. These stories originate from Burr's own experiences with his abusive father and coming to understand his perspective on life once Burr became a father himself. Namely, Burr's stories usually involve a troubled father realizing his faults and taking responsibility for his flaws, ultimately understanding that his behavior is not acceptable anymore.
  • Black Comedy: A master of the craft. One particularly dark bit had him asking the crowd if any of them have also ever fantasized about steering their car onto a crowded sidewalk:
    "I mean, I keep my hand right here [12:00 position on the steering wheel], nobody knows who I am. I move the wheel just three inches to the right, I'm on the cover of Newsweek!"
  • Biting-the-Hand Humor: The sponsor plugs he forces himself to read about halfway through each podcast are full of it.
  • Catchphrase:
    • His Monday Morning Podcast will invariably include one or up to all three of his: "LAYDEES!", "Oh, Jeezus," and "Go fuck yourselves."
    • "I don't fucking know." is pretty common.
    • "Zip... RECRUITER!!"
  • Cluster F-Bomb: "Jesus fucking Christ" and others are not at all uncommon.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: He used to be "deep in the rabbit hole," but he isn't so far down anymore.
  • Country Matters: One of his favorite words, especially on his podcast.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Believes this about most/all corporations, particularly bankers.
  • Cultural Cringe: "Animals" - his term for (usually fat), stupid, poor-hygiene, generally class-less people he sees on the road. A lot of his early podcasts involve him trashing these animals.
  • The Determinator: Stand-up comedy aside, being a brutal profession to get started in, he continues to work on his drumming, cooking and self-imposed challenges. It's rare that he doesn't reach the goals he sets for himself.
  • Domestic Abuse:
  • Double Standard: At least half of his material is dedicated to perceived double standards, particularly with American culture and American law.
  • Do Wrong, Right: After an unfortunate anecdote of his about a stranger in a bar, Bill puts some advice out there for racists: before you go on a racist tirade to someone, at least try and verify that the other guy is also a racist. Don't just rope in some poor sucker minding his own business and pretend you're having an agreeable dialogue.
    "Feel me out first! Ask some questions! 'Do you like to fish?' 'Have you ever fucked your sister?' Right? I start rattlin' off answers, then you go old-school!"
  • Driving Question: His special Paper Tiger uses this in the form of a question Bill's wife asked him: "where is this coming from?" He uses it to delve into his anger issues.
  • Enforced Plug: He has a tendency to make fun of his sponsors on the podcast even as he advertises for them. His bit on Shari's Berries is practically a comedy routine in itself.
  • Everyone Has Standards: He's gleefully politically incorrect in most ways, but he's got nothing but contempt for racism.
  • Evil Laugh: He loves to give off a self-aware, comically sinister chuckle whenever he says something on his podcast that he knows just pissed somebody off.
  • Fiery Redhead: No better example of one.
  • Grin of Rage: Bill is famous for his hilarious rants during shows, during which he frequently grins like a maniac, especially when he starts yelling.
  • Guilty Pleasure: Has mentioned loving cigars, mint-chocolate ice cream, drinking and "eating like an animal" when he's "off the wagon."
  • Hair-Trigger Temper:
    • When his wife described him as going 0-100 in three seconds, he replied "I'm idling at 75 constantly." It takes very little to set him off, with many of the below doing so.
    • He once did an entire routine about getting angry over someone slightly perturbing him at a Saturday market, suggesting he should destroy someone's merchandise just for the look on their face.
    • He once considered committing suicide by slitting his wrists on a glass window because he didn't want to make a pie.
    • Gold Diggers and unjust divorces.
    • Hecklers booing comedians. Just ask the entire city of Philadelphia; after a lot of other comedians were booed offstage at an event in Philly, Bill dedicated literally all of his time to insulting the crowd and the city.
    • Political Correctness. While Bill thinks some of it is okay — he notes that catching some of the worst creeps in Hollywood was a good move — he mostly laments that he feels like trying to be PC has gone too far. He's dedicated time to mocking feminists and the #MeToo movement in his specials and his podcasts.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Paul Virzi is often mentioned and a sometimes guest on his podcast and seems like Bill's best friend, as they've done a few comedy tours together as well.
  • Hidden Depths:
    • Crosses with Master of None, but his personality tends to have him be "into shit for a minute". Aside from that, Bill is a licensed helicopter pilot and (amateur) baker, guitarist, drummer, and seems to pick up another hobby every other week.
    • To people who take his stand up at face value, if they listen to the podcast long enough most people would realize Bill is empathetic, sensitive, doesn't take himself too seriously, and in general is a nice guy, deep down.
    • He saw a few episodes of One-Punch Man and admitted that he liked it, seeing a lot of himself in protagonist Saitama as a guy who was completely and utterly bored with life.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Frequent, such as when he discussed being pissed off about someone driving slow and awful, then perfectly and guessed that they were texting while driving - which he had done just a few minutes before.
  • Insistent Terminology: Justifiably maintains that a comedian cannot "heckle" a crowd, because the crowd is not performing.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Say what you will about his views, words and general demeanor, but he loves his wife, tries genuinely to help people who ask for advice on his podcast, and let's not forget what he contributes in the Annual Patrice O'Neal Benefit.
  • Men Don't Cry:
    • Discussed, though he lampshades how this attitude is pretty unhealthy for him.
    • When he had to give away his dog Cleo for the sake of his new daughter, Bill went into the bathroom and "cried for 0.8 seconds before I put the lid back on it." Bill openly admits this isn't healthy, wondering who he's going to explode at once he hits a Rage Breaking Point.
    • He wanted to buy a pumpkin for Halloween so he and his girlfriend could decorate it, but a voice in his head went "What are you, a fag?" and he couldn't go through with it. Bill then discusses how "anything that shows any sort of emotional vulnerability at all" is taken as a sign of weakness by other men.
  • Mistaken for Pedophile / Pædo Hunt: He openly despises the rise of these tropes as a result of To Catch a Predator, since he loves making children laugh while in public, but this results in the parents getting creeped out.
    "Alright, look, I get it; there's dudes out there touching kids. But it's only a tiny fraction of the population so, y'know, take it down a few, because you're making it fuckin' awkward out there."
  • More Dakka: Subverted, Bill thinks the best home defense would be a .22 pistol, because it isn't so loud that it will damage your hearing, and it doesn't have enough power to cause damage/injuries/fatalities outside of your house.
  • No Ending: He was profoundly troubled by the abrupt ending to a video on YouTube detailing a gorilla smart enough to use sign language, that was heartbroken by the death of its pet kitten. He then tells a loooong "Shaggy Dog" Story about a gorilla that ends with no punchline, just to show that audience how he felt after the video.note 
  • N-Word Privileges: Averted, he rarely says the word, despite (or because of) his many black friends and the fact that his wife is black.
  • Oh, Crap!: He believes that the look of bewildered horror frozen on some elderly men's faces is this reaction, made permanent when their joints give out and it dawns on them that they can't get up and escape their wives' nagging anymore.
  • Paper Tiger: Deconstructed. For all of his anger issues and outwardly furious persona, Bill loses most of the times he actually fights anyone. Paper Tiger was even the name of his 2019 Netflix special, and is about how he's much more vulnerable than he lets on and his wife deals with vulnerability better.
  • Playing Against Type: Probably not the first person you'd think to cast as an ex-Imperial sharpshooter.
  • Precision F-Strike: When he first started, he worked totally clean in his stand-up until the last joke, which he told to make fun of some of the people who came into his day job (at the time) of being a dental assistant:
    Patient: I don't understand why I keep getting cavities. I brush my teeth almost everyday.
    Bill: Oh yeah? Do you wipe your ass almost every time you take a shit?
  • Prematurely Bald: His hairline can be seen gradually receding until he decides to go chrome dome. He argues against being this trope, saying with or without hair it's not a good look.
  • Racist Grandma:
    • A whole routine goes on about how people are too hard on old people who say racist things, because what did everyone think their thoughts were on the subject? In particular, he commends Donald Sterling on not using the N-word once in his recorded statements despite being an 80-year-old white man who spent his formative years watching completely accepted all-white baseball leagues (plus, if his statements there actually do represent the views he's had all his life, he was probably considered a flaming hippie back in the day).
    • Another routine deals with his very own grandmother, who didn't react all that well to learn that Bill's girlfriend (now wife) Nia is black.
  • Real Men Hate Affection: He has a theory that men have a lower average life expectancy than women because of all the stress that builds up from their Jerkass "dude bro" friends challenging their sexuality any time they show any signs of caring, kindness, sensitivity, or intelligence.
    (Imitating said friends) What are you, a fag?
  • Redheads Are Uncool: He frequently alludes to this, but also makes no secret of his annoyance with the trope.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Much of Bill's material is built upon this trope, like saying he's against hitting women because "they fall like toddlers", and his multiple attacks on PC culture as a whole.
    • In 2006, he did a Philadelphia performance where he spent his entire set ripping into the audience and the city as a whole for the mistreatment the previous comics recieved from the crowd, complete with a countdown of how much time was left until the end of his act. Anyone familiar with the mechanics of stand up comedy know that dealing with a Tough Room is extremely difficult, and the previous comics just ended their set early and walked off. Burr used that anger and stayed on stage so long weathering all the boos that, by the end, there was a portion of the crowd cheering him on and gave him a standing ovation.
    "Alright, that's my time. You guys... You guys were here, man."
  • Running Gag: Much to his irritation, he seems to always get a heckler in each of the specials he records.
  • Self-Deprecation: He has called himself "crazy" or "maniac", often referring to his-own anger issues. In his podcast, he calls himself out on his own hypocrisies seconds after making them, and follows-up his own exaggerations with "I'm full of shit" or similar.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: invoked He tends to do these, particularly in regards to fitness or abstinence from alcohol, just to get down to a certain weight, or to see if he can actually do it.
  • Shoot the Dog: Metaphorically rather than literally. In one special he described how he grew to absolutely adore a rescue pitbull he got with his girlfriend (now wife). But years later it was proven the dog was just not good with strangers, and when they were about to have a baby they made a hard decision to give her away. The anguish in doing so was palpable.
  • Shout-Out:
    • His "Laydies" catch phrase is from Jerry Lewis
    • He also played a game with Virzi in which they'd do an impression of Rodney Dangerfield to cope with the stress of being on a long tour in Canada.
  • Suicide as Comedy:
    • Bill frequently jokes about killing himself, and sees people who die in spectacular ways as heroic. Considering his age, he's probably just joking. He explains that it's only an urge that hits him in response to minor frustrations, and once talked about how he was tempted to smash his face through a window and bleed out down the side of his house... just to get out of making a pie.
    • He once did a routine about a terminally ill man who tried to kill himself by jumping out of a helicopter over the ocean, but lived. He crosses between sympathizing with the helicopter pilot (who had, according to Burr, started just five days earlier), and praising the jumper as taking control of his life.
  • Take That!: Famously in Philadelphia. While on tour, he became so enraged at the constant heckling his fellow comedians were taking that he spent his whole set delivering what amounts to an 11 minute combination of a Cluster F-Bomb and "The Reason You Suck" Speech to the audience, checking the time each minute and letting the screaming audience know in no uncertain terms that he was going to do all eleven minutes like that. In playbacks you can start to hear some cheers among the booing.
    Burr: Seven minutes left! Seven motherfucking minutes left, and I'm doing ALL FUCKING SEVEN!
  • True Companions:
    • The tailgate crew from the Rose Bowl (Jason Lawhead, Paul Virzi, etc.) and Lil' Jimmy Norton and Opie and Anthony from their self-named show.
    • Patrice O'Neal - to the point that Bill helps organize a fundraiser for the people Patrice left behind after his death every year.
  • The Unfair Sex:
    • Discussed in a podcast about Carrie Underwood's song "Before He Cheats." Bill repeatedly talks about how much he hates the song because the narrator of the song never actually says definitively that her man is cheating. And yet, she feels the need to destroy his personal property based on this assumption.
    • In Paper Tiger, he mentions how he was sexually harassed "to the letter of the law" by a woman, but he didn't tell anyone because nobody would have cared. In an uncharacteristically calm move, Bill meditated on it and just forgave her.
  • The Unfettered: To a degree, in his professional life. He doesn't have a show, or other ways for Professional Offendees to latch onto if he says or does something offensive on stage or on his podcast. He does have a show now, but has explained that he gets complainers to back off simply by refusing to play their game and publicly apologize, knowing that the vindictive social media outrage mob would treat such a concession as a "guilty" plea, and go after him even harder.
  • Verbal Tic: "Ya know?" And "Right?"
  • Women Are Wiser: Has called pop culture on this trope several times. For example, attacking the statement made by Oprah Winfrey that being a mother was the hardest job in the world. "Oprah's not even a mother, how the fuck would she know!?"