Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Politics
4 March 2010

Sarah Palin the stand-up comic

And, stop the press, she confirms the tomato saga.

By Sophie Elmhirst


Sarah Palin’s post-political life has been full of twists and packed with new undertakings — the book, the Fox appointment, the Tea Party speech — but none is more welcome than this: please welcome, on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Sarah Palin the stand-up comedian!

“At last!” the world cries. Because Jon Stewart was getting tired. And Chris Rock is frankly out of touch. A little Palin humour will put us right back in touch with our proverbial funny bone. Hell, I hand it to the woman for standing up and telling some jokes.

Sign up for The New Statesman’s newsletters Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. A weekly newsletter helping you fit together the pieces of the global economic slowdown. Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.

She even gets her own back at Tina Fey. But she mangles the Congress one, and health care suffers from the delivery. And as for the (I’m summarising) our-faces-are-frozen-in-Alaska-because-it’s-cold-not-because-of-Botox one, the laughter is on some kind of time lag. Clearly the audience needed a heavy prompt: (“Laugh, numbskulls, this woman likes guns!”).

Content from our partners
“I learn something new on every trip"
How data can help revive our high streets in the age of online shopping
Why digital inclusion is a vital piece of levelling up

Also, listen carefully to the noise she makes as she comes on stage — what is that?

Anyway, the big news is that Palin confirms the tomato-throwing saga. But at this point she really kills the comedy, by uttering the immortal words: “It’s not funny, it’s true.” The first rule of comedy club: don’t tell people it’s not funny.