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Issue Date: March 2012

Face Time

Joan Rivers talks about her shows, tour and how nothing is off-limits.
Kim Schneider

Most people Joan Rivers' age are long since retired. But the 78-year-old comedian never slows down. After winning the second season of NBC's Celebrity Apprentice in 2009 and being the subject of an acclaimed 2010 documentary, Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work, the comedian is back in the spotlight alongside her daughter, Melissa, with the second season of the WEtv reality TV show Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best? If that's not enough, Rivers' weekly E! show Fashion Police is now an hour long, and she still tours the country doing stand-up, including a March 24 stop at the Palace Theatre. As for what to expect at the show, Rivers says your guess is as good as hers. "Whatever is going on in the papers at the moment, whatever scandals, whoever we hate, the presidential race," she says, "and whatever I like and dislike in my life."

Q. How is Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best? different from the documentary?

A. With the documentary they followed me around for a year. You forgot [the cameras] were there totally. With the reality show, they just grab the good stuff that day. If I'm going to the plastic surgeon, they'll follow me to that. They're not going to follow me through every single, boring minute of my life. Nobody cares if you're sitting around doing needlepoint for six hours, but they are very interested if you're having a big fight with the butcher.

Q. Is it awkward to see someone you've just made fun of on Fashion Police?

A. I never really see them. Everyone thinks we all live in a little compound. Maybe you'll see somebody in a restaurant. If you're making $20 million a movie, you shouldn't be upset that I didn't like your dress.

Q. Has anybody ever told you, "You were right, I shouldn't have worn that dress"?

A. Julia Roberts used to say all the time, "Say it to my face." Sarah Jessica Parker, who loves fashion and she knows if something is just outrageous, she'll come up to me and say, "Check the shoes. What do you think?"

Q. Is anything in your act off-limits?

A. I am totally politically incorrect. I totally couldn't care less about what's considered correct and what isn't. I'm sick of human resources. I'm sick of sexual harassment. I've never seen anyone sue someone who's very attractive for sexual harassment. It all comes out in the act.

Q. Who do you find funny today?

A. Me. I am absolutey the best I've ever been in my life. I take no prisoners. I really give a great show. I would have never told you this eight years ago. That's the great thing about age. You're free. What are you going to do? You're not going to like me? People haven't liked me. Are you going to fire me? I've been fired. I'm going to go into bankruptcy? I've been bankrupt. There's nothing you can do to me. That frees you up. The only good thing is you don't give a s---.

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