Joan Rivers remembered: 10 major moments in the pioneering comedienne's life

People called Joan Rivers many things, but "boring" was never one of them.

The fierce comedienne was a pioneer for female comics across the globe, developing a brand of humour that was as scathing towards others as it was self-deprecating.

Joan once said in an interview, "Winston Churchill said: If you make someone laugh you give them a little vacation. And maybe you take the worst thing in the world and make it funny it’s a vacation for a minute from horror."


As would be expected, immediately following Joan's peaceful death at 81 came an outpouring of emotional tributes from comedy's funniest women (and the world at large).

Joan had been on life support for almost a week at Mount Sinai hospital after she stopped breathing and suffered a cardiac arrest during surgery on her vocal chords at a nearby private clinic.

In a statement her daughter Melissa said: "She passed peacefully at 1:17pm surrounded by family and close friends. My son and I would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Mount Sinai Hospital for the amazing care they provided for my mother.

"My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon."

Known for her catchphrase, "can we talk?", Joan was an actress, writer, producer, and TV host of the incredibly successful Fashion Police.

Confrontational, confessional, and often aggressive, Joan's comedic style riled many but provided a clear pathway for other female stand-ups to emerge and go toe-to-toe with male comics.

"Watching Joan Rivers do standup at age 81 was incredible: athletic, jaw-dropping, terrifying, essential," tweeted Lena Dunham. "It never stopped. Neither will she."

From her early days on Johnny Carson to stints on All-Star Celebrity Apprentice and best-selling books, it's been one heck of a ride for the Queen of Comedy.


Don't miss a beat with HELLO! Canada's Daily Hits newsletter, your daily dose of royal and celebrity news, fashion, weddings and more. CLICK HERE to sign up for free!