UPDATE: Tuesday, Oct. 20 (6:51 p.m. ET) – Despite the uncanny similarities, Amy Schumer is flatly denying that she lifted material from the late Patrice O’Neal, with the 34-year-old comic telling TMZ that she “would never steal anyone else’s joke.”;
In fact, Schumer insists that she’d never even seen O’Neal’s routine. Watch:
After its debut this weekend, Amy Schumer’s HBO special Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo certainly attracted its fair share of attention — just not the kind she had expected when one of her standup routines drew accusations that the Trainwreck star is a joke thief.
As a sharp-eyed viewer with a good memory of comedy noticed, one of Schumer’s routines is uncannily similar to a routine from late comic Patrice O’Neal, who passed away in 2011 (Schumer and O’Neal certainly knew each other as part of the NYC comedy scene, even appearing on the same Comedy Central roast of Charlie Sheen just weeks before O’Neal died after a severe stroke).
To demonstrate the similarities, this video of Schumer’s wrap-up joke in her Apollo special was posted on YouTube along with O’Neal’s routine.
The three-minute video displays both comedians performing their routine about different sex acts, and although there are differences (what O’Neal describes as “gorilla masking”; is referred to by Schumer as “the Abraham Lincoln”;) the similarities are impossible to miss. Schumer has yet to comment.
In the meantime, feel free to compare and contrast, but watch out: both routines are decidedly NSFW and describe sexual acts in graphic detail, so consider yourself warned: