Hollywood stars are rallying around Martin Short after a scathing critique called the decorated actor and comedian "desperately unfunny."
A Slate op-ed titled "Why We Keep Putting Up With Martin Short" made the rounds on Friday, arguing that Short's "over-the-top characters" — from Father of the Bride's Franck Eggelhoffer to Only Murders in the Building's Oliver Putnam — are "unbelievably annoying." Writer Dan Kois reflected on Short's five decades in the industry, describing his so-called "schtick" as "exhausting, sweaty, and desperately unfunny."
Representatives for Short did not immediately respond to EW's request for comment.
Frazer Harrison/Getty Ben Stiller; Martin Short; Mark Hamill
Since the piece was published, many of his fans have taken issue with its depiction and assessment of Short, including his Hollywood peers. His fellow Saturday Night Live alum Ben Stiller was quick to jump to his defense, writing on social media, "Martin Short is a comedic genius. End o story."
Martin Short is a comedic genius. End o story.
— Ben Stiller (@BenStiller) September 9, 2023
Star Wars star Mark Hamill joined in, posting pictures of Short's past roles with the caption, "Hard to believe people are actually debating whether or not Martin Short is funny. Newsflash: He is HILARIOUS."
— Mark Hamill (@MarkHamill) September 9, 2023
John Cusack pointed to one of Short's sketches from his stint on Second City Television, writing, "Mr. Rodgers [sic] boxing match is my fav."
I don’t know what people are on about re Martin short -
But his mr rodgers boxing Match is my fav
— John Cusack (@johncusack) September 9, 2023
Before his success as a movie star, Short made a name for himself in two hit comedy series, SCTV and SNL. The skit in question features Short as PBS star Fred Rogers, duking it out with famed chef Julia Child in comedic fisticuffs.
Succession actress J. Smith-Cameron also weighed in on the clips of Short's work embedded throughout the op-ed, which she found "so entertaining that the article is a valentine in spite of itself."
While the piece takes issue with Short's comedic stylings, describing him as having an "eager-to-please flamboyance" and claiming he "would do anything, anything, for a laugh," it also spends time dissecting his career. In a follow-up post, Smith-Cameron added, "I came away with more appreciation of Martin Short than ever."
The infamous Martin Short article is filled with clips or references to characters that the writer finds annoying somehow, but are so entertaining that the article is a valentine in spite of itself.
— J. Smith-Cameron💙 (@j_smithcameron) September 9, 2023
Meanwhile, actor and TV host Jerry O'Connell commended Short for his kindness, explaining, "When I was a kid, I walked up to Martin Short and told him I loved Three Amigos. He could not have been kinder to this annoying kid. I think about that exchange a lot."
When I was a kid, I walked up to Martin Short and told him I loved THREE AMIGOS. He could not have been kinder to this annoying kid. I think about that exchange a lot.
— Jerry O'Connell (@MrJerryOC) September 8, 2023
After the op-ed surfaced on social media, SNL comedian and Better Call Saul actor Michael McKean wrote, "Guy really blew the lid off of the whole Martin Short story, didn't he?"
Guy really blew the lid off of the whole Martin Short story, didn't he?
— Michael McKean (@MJMcKean) September 8, 2023
Short is currently starring in Hulu's Emmy-nominated crime comedy Only Murders in the Building.
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