So, here's the setup: Three-dozen comedians walk into a ballroom...
Actually, there's no punch line: Three-dozen comedians really did walk into a ballroom Saturday night, as a blinding roster of A-list stars celebrated wry wit and spry barbs at the second annual Comedy Awards at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City.
E! News was there to catch all the action, and yes: Insults were hurled, quips were unleashed, and jibes were served up spicy-hot. In other words: Expect lotsa F-bombs! Plus: Kristen Wiig...brawling on the stage floor?! Let's cue the laugh track...
Chris Rock opened the show with a profanity-laced spiel introducing the Comedy Special of the Year award, whose nominees, he made sure to note, did not include "any black guys." The award went to Louis C.K., who then took the stage and acknowledged Rock by saying, "Thanks, black guy." Touché!
The funnyman turned out to be one of the night's big winners, also snagging awards for Stand-Up Tour and Sketch/Alternative Comedy Series for his show, Louie. He accepted that last trophy from presenter Tracy Morgan and promptly cracked, "Another black guy!"
That pretty much set the zippy tone for the night, which turned out to be a reunion of sorts for many stars. Leading the fray was Saturday Night Live, amply repped by alums like Fey, Rudolph, Arnett, Amy Poehler and Chris Parnell.
Even Modern Family's Ty Burrell copped to a long-overdue get-together with his old pal, Mad Men's Rich Sommer, who is currently in New York City rehearsing for the upcoming Broadway revival of the play Harvey—and who also happened to swing by the Comedy Awards. Burrell told us on the red carpet how he and Sommer have become good pals from bumping into each other in Los Angeles, and the Modern Family star joked, "I brought him along as my date—he's around here somewhere, hopefully holding my purse."
The night was also a great chance for celebs to give big-ups to other performers and shows they love.
Interestingly, several stars name-checked Adult Swim as their comedy obsession du jour. Bridesmaids' Wendi McLendon-Covey told us on the red carpet that she was hooked on the channel's John C. Reilly–starrer, Check It Out! With Steve Brule, which she watches "in the middle of the night—it is so stupidly funny that I choke on my cereal when I'm watching it."
Parks and Recreation's Adam Scott, meanwhile, admitted to us he's totally into Adult Swim's irreverent Eagleheart, starring Chris Elliott.
Williams, who was feted with the night's Stand-Up Icon Award, revealed that he's a huge fan of Louis C.K.'s Louie: "It's so honest about being a stand-up," he said on the red carpet. "It's so funny, and it's brilliant."
The show also honored comedy legend Don Rickles with its Johnny Carson Award, and the beloved comic showed the audience he hadn't lost his irascible edge by quipping, "I see many people in the audience tonight, and I realize: I'm the biggest name here!"
The night's other big winner was Bridesmaids, which snagged four awards: Performance by an Actress (Melissa McCarthy), Comedy Director (Paul Feig), Comedy Screenplay (Wiig and Annie Mumolo) and Comedy Film.
It also provided the show's most sidesplitting watercooler moment, when, while accepting their screenplay award, Wiig and Mumolo pretended to wrestle over the trophy and literally ended up rolling over each other on the stage floor.
Talk about leaving us rolling with laughter!
The Second Annual Comedy Awards airs on Comedy Central on May 6, but if you don't mind full-on spoilers and want a jump on the winners, here's the full rundown:
Stand-Up Icon Award
Johnny Carson Award
Animated Comedy Film
Performance by an Actor—Film
Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Performance by an Actress—Film
Melissa McCarthy, Bridesmaids
Paul Feig, Bridesmaids
Parks and Recreation
Sketch/Alternative Comedy Series
Animated Comedy Series
Performance by an Actor—TV
Ty Burrell, Modern Family
Performance by an Actress—TV
Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation
Late Night Comedy Series
The Daily Show With Jon Stewart
Comedy Special of the Year
Louis C.K.: Live at the Beacon Theater
Breakout Performer of the Year
Best Viral Original
Songify This—Winning—A Song by Charlie Sheen