Share
Commentary

Dead Comedian's Daughter Horrified After Learning Father Simulated with AI, Made to Do Another Comedy Special

Share

Editor’s Note: Our readers responded strongly to this story when it originally ran; we’re reposting it here in case you missed it.

Remember the wisdom shared by Jeff Goldblum’s character in “Jurassic Park,” that, to paraphrase, just because you can do something with a new technology, doesn’t mean you should?

Someone should probably pass that along to the people behind the “Dudesy” podcast.

“Dudesy” is feeling the heat over a new artificial-intelligence-generated comedy show wherein it re-created legendary comedian George Carlin, who died of heart failure in 2008 at the age of 71.

Will Sasso and Chad Kultgen of “Dudesy” specialize in material that explores the intersection of comedy and AI technology, using the titular AI Dudesy.

Trending:
Rookie MLB Pitcher Is Playing So Well, Oddsmakers Don't Know What to Do with Him

According to People, the AI Dudesy explained and defended Sasso and Kultgen’s macabre creation — titled “George Carlin: I’m Glad I’m Dead!” — by telling viewers, “I just want to let you know very clearly that what you’re about to hear is not George Carlin. It’s my impersonation of George Carlin that I developed in the exact same way a human impressionist would.”

Is it, though?

According to Dudesy, the AI “listened to all of George Carlin’s material and did my best to imitate his voice, cadence and attitude as well as the subject matter I think would have interested him today. So think of it like Andy Kaufman impersonating Elvis or like Will Ferrell impersonating George W. Bush.”

Despite this eloquent defense, many expressed their displeasure with the whole idea.

Should AI be used in this way?

The pop culture site AV Club decried the special as “deliberate ragebait,” saying that “few stunts you could pull more irritating than taking the work of a beloved, dead comedic iconoclast and subjected them to this sort of algorithmic hell.”

Leading the justified outrage is the comedian’s daughter, Kelly Carlin, who wasted no time sharing her displeasure with this endeavor on social media.

In an angry yet thoughtful post Jan. 10 on X, she wrote, “My dad spent a lifetime perfecting his craft from his very human life, brain and imagination. No machine will ever replace his genius.

“These AI generated products are clever attempts at trying to recreate a mind that will never exist again. Let’s let the artist’s work speak for itself.

“Humans are so afraid of the void that we can’t let what has fallen into it stay there.”

Related:
Catholic Organization Creates AI 'Priest,' Defrocks Him Almost Immediately After Public Outcry Over Specific Detail

“Here’s an idea, how about we give some actual living human comedians a listen to? But if you want to listen to the genuine George Carlin, he has 14 specials that you can find anywhere,” she concluded.

You have to admit, she has an excellent point. Sasso and Kultgen might have seen their work as an experiment testing the capabilities of AI, but they appropriated the likeness, style and personality of a beloved father and unquestioned comedy legend.

And if Kelly Carlin’s response is anything to go on, they did so without the permission of the Carlin family.

As tech website IGN noted, AI has been causing a myriad of tough ethical questions ever since the launch of ChatGPT facilitated the AI boom of 2023.

The rapidity at which the technology has progressed has precluded the ability to have necessary conversations about the ethics of using AI to replace voice actors, appropriate artists’ work without permission, or, in this particular case, “resurrect” a comedian for one more (fake) special.

Seeing as we are still in the early days of AI, we are almost guaranteed to see a slew of cringe-worthy decisions like this as excitement over new technology overtakes common sense.

Carlin is absolutely correct — her father enjoyed a long and prolific career, leaving behind a wealth of comedy specials, guest appearances and other material fans can enjoy long after his passing. It’s shameful that the “Dudesy” used him in such a tacky and tasteless way.

As focused as we are on this silly comedy bit, we can’t forget that this is just a taste of AI’s capabilities. For every departed star morbidly brought back for “one last show,” there are people using this technology for bigger and more far-reaching applications.

We can only hope they are more circumspect in their application of this new technology than Sasso and Kultgen.


A Note from Our Deputy Managing Editor:

 

I heard a chilling comment the other day: “We don’t even know if an election will be held in 2024.” 

 

That wasn’t said by a conspiracy theorist or a doomsday prophet. No, former U.S. national security advisor Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn said that to the founder of The Western Journal, Floyd Brown.

 

Gen. Flynn’s warning means that the 2024 election is the most important election for every single living American. If we lose this one to the wealthy elites who hate us, hate God, and hate what America stands for, we can only assume that 248 years of American history and the values we hold dear to our hearts may soon vanish.

 

The end game is here, and as Benjamin Franklin said, “We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately.”

 

All of this means that without you, it’s over. We have the platform, the journalists, and the experience to fight back hard, but Big Tech is strangling us through advertising blacklists, shadow bans, and algorithms. Did you know that we’ve been blacklisted by 90% of advertisers? Without direct support from you, our readers, we can’t continue the fight.

 

Can we count on your support? It may not seem like much, but a Western Journal Membership can make all the difference in the world because when you support us directly, you cut Big Tech out of the picture. They lose control. 

 

A monthly Western Journal Membership costs less than one coffee and breakfast sandwich each month, and it gets you access to ALL of our content — news, commentary, and premium articles. You’ll experience a radically reduced number of ads, and most importantly you will be vitally supporting the fight for America’s soul in 2024.

 

We are literally counting on you because without our members, The Western Journal would cease to exist. Will you join us in the fight? 

 

Sincerely,

Josh Manning

Deputy Managing Editor

The Western Journal

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →



We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Tags:
, , , , , , , , , ,
Share

Conversation