In the realm of comedy, there are moments that shape careers and give rise to feuds that captivate audiences. One such story involves Joe Rogan and his encounters with fellow comedians Carlos Mencia and Brendan Schaub.
Joe Rogan’s journey to success has been remarkable. With a massive Spotify contract, a lucrative UFC deal, and sold-out stadiums, he has established himself as a media powerhouse. However, just a decade ago, the trajectory of his career took a different path.
Rogan was an early adopter of vlogging, employing a dedicated producer to document his experiences. It was during this time that he found himself in a classic confrontation, accusing a more established comedian of joke stealing. The incident, captured in a memorable video, led to Rogan’s banishment from the comedy store, essentially upending his standing within the industry.
Carlos Mencia had emerged as a fascinating yet controversial figure. Operating in an era just before the internet boom, Mencia believed he could get away with appropriating material from his fellow comedians, while also engaging in questionable hazing rituals and unscrupulous practices.
Mencia’s comedic style heavily relied on his ethnicity, despite the fact that he was not actually Mexican as he presented himself to be. Born of Honduran and German heritage, he had been encouraged by Comedy Store owner Mitzy Shore to change his stage name.
Rogan felt compelled to defend his friends from Mencia’s repeated transgressions, leading him to confront the comedian on multiple occasions. To substantiate his claims, Rogan enlisted the support of fellow comedian Bobby Lee, who confirmed the allegations, albeit expressing his disinterest in being featured in the video.
Although Mencia initially emerged victorious, resulting in his banishment from the comedy store, Mencia’s career gradually dwindled, and his reputation suffered. Rogan playfully labeled him Carlos Manstealia in a memorable riff, which gained some traction. Despite attempts by interviewers like Patrick Bet David to coax Mencia into redemption, his refusal to acknowledge his faults has left him seemingly beyond salvation.
In another intriguing twist, Mencia made an appearance on the TigerBelly podcast, hosted by Bobby Lee, where he continued to evade accountability for his role in his own downfall. The podcast offered riveting insights but ultimately revealed a man unable to tame his ego.
Yet, the Mencia saga is only a fraction of the story. Joe Rogan played a pivotal role in Brendan Schaub’s comedic transition, even as he humorously shattered the remnants of Schaub’s dignity during the infamous “I’m not surprised” sequence on his podcast.
Rogan’s support transformed Schaub into a regular at the comedy store, affording him opportunities like filming a special for Showtime within just a couple of years into his comedy career. However, Schaub’s enthusiastic fanbase has playfully nicknamed him “Thiefer Sutherland” due to instances of him appropriating lines from famous friends and even resorting to blatant theft.
Notably, Schaub’s MMA news network pays homage to Cartoon Network’s classic logo, indicating a pattern of questionable inspiration.
He was even caught imitating Eddie Murphy’s iconic moonwalk bit and mimicking Joe Rogan’s distinctive laughter.
Ironically, Rogan’s support and mentorship of Schaub, although well-intentioned, placed him in a spotlight where his lack of authenticity became apparent. Similar to Mencia, Schaub’s inability to introspect and accept responsibility has contributed to his own decline.
As Rogan distanced himself with the move to Texas, Schaub found himself more exposed than ever, struggling to secure bookings or fill venues. The once prosperous podcast and flourishing career now seem to be spiraling downward.
In the realm of comedy, feuds and controversies add layers of intrigue to the lives of comedians. The clashes between Joe Rogan and Carlos Mencia, as well as the parallels to Brendan Schaub, serve as reminders of the complexities and challenges within the industry.
While Rogan’s career has skyrocketed, leaving a lasting impact, the paths of Mencia and Schaub have taken different turns, emphasizing the importance of authenticity and accountability in the world of comedy.