Archive Page - 08/16/13 41 years, 2,180 covers and 55,277 stories from PEOPLE magazine's history for you to enjoy
- Cissy Houston: Bobbi Kristina Brown Has 'Irreversible Brain Damage' and 'Remains Unresponsive'
- The Best Photos from the Week of Apr. 13- Apr. 19, 2015
- Two Years After Losing Her Leg, Boston Marathon Bombing Survivor Crosses Finish Line
- The Inside Story on Noah Galloway's Touching DWTS Guest
- DWTS: Who Was in Limbo on Spring Break Night?
On Newsstands Now
- Matthew McConaughey: In His Own Words
- Jessa Duggar's Wedding Album
- Brittany Maynard's Final Days
Pick up your copy on newsstands
Click here for instant access to the Digital Magazine
People Top 5
LAST UPDATE: Tuesday February 10, 2015 01:10PM EST
PEOPLE Top 5 are the most-viewed stories on the site over the past three days, updated every 60 minutes
- December 26, 1983
- Vol. 20
- No. 26
Where's Johnny? Home Watching a 'Semi-Legend' Skewer Guests and Boost His Ratings
Still, Rivers doesn't take nearly as much as she dishes out. In her late 40s, she has become America's premier comedienne by raising insult to a controversial art form. Arguing "I'm really a very sensitive person; I only go after the ones who are big enough to take it," she abuses everyone: Bo Derek ("so dumb she studies for a Pap test"), Sophia Loren ("an old tramp from World War II.... I threw a Hershey bar into her dressing room and she laid down") and Willie Nelson ("he wears a Roach Motel around his neck").
Lately Rivers has even begun zapping stars a mere arm's length away on the Tonight Show, where she gives new meaning to the label cutup. She shocked Victoria Principal by insisting Principal was once engaged to Andy Gibb ("I saw that cheesy ring"), questioned the heterosexuality of Boy George and, by hinting that his marriage was in trouble, made Tony (Taxi) Danza look as if he wanted to punch her.
But if she risks driving potential guests away (Taylor and Richard Burton have refused to go on with her), viewers seem to have the opposite reaction. Her shows some nights outrate Carson's, which is why she was recently made his sole substitute (and could eventually succeed him). Her What Becomes a Semi-Legend Most is a hit LP and she is on the road performing before SRO crowds 40 weeks a year.
Rivers' rise signals nothing less than a wholesale change in the public's sense of humor. As she figures it, "I am telling the truth in a very angry age. People in this country don't like anyone anymore. And I succeed by saying what everyone else is thinking."
For Rivers recognition was a long time coming. She defied her upper-class Jewish parents to "starve" as a Greenwich Village comic before Carson discovered her, announcing on the air in 1965, "You're going to be a star." Now that she is, Rivers presides over a Beverly Hills "mini-Versailles," home to second husband Edgar Rosenberg, 53, daughter Melissa, 15, and a flock of servants. One of them recently took a call from Rivers' first husband, Bond's clothing store heir James Sanger whom she hasn't seen in more than 20 years. The message? "Tell Joan that I'm proud."
Treat Yourself! 4 Preview Issues
The most buzzed about stars this minute!