When Dane Cook appeared on an episode of Louie in August and the two comics shocked viewers by hashing out their real-life joke-stealing feud over Lady Gaga tickets, fans didn’t know what to think. Sure, it was brilliant, surreal theater, but what was real and what was fake? How did this encounter come to be, and did this on-screen rapprochement represent an off-screen conciliation? Well… sort of. In an expansive interview with the The A.V. Club, Louis C.K. revealed the circumstances that brought he and Cook together. (Watch it again here.)
Their collaboration reminds me of the 2010 Super Bowl ad that David Letterman and Jay Leno agreed to do at the height of the Conan drama. Both men knew the bit would be funny, and that alone was enough to make it happen despite their chilly relationship. Similarly, Louis seems to respect Cook for coming on the show, but you can still feel the tension in Louis’ telling of the story…
Does the backstory of their thawed rivalry give you an even greater appreciation of the two men’s talents and personalities? I would have loved to be a fly on the wall when Louis initially read the email where Cook suggested he only play huge stadiums, like MSG. Takes balls to press send on that email, Dane.