Everyone has a celebrity look-alike, including Michael Stipe.
For some time, the singer best known for fronting R.E.M. has been sporting an out-of-control, bushy, wiry beard — similar to David Letterman‘s retirement look. So with the former talk show host’s recent New York magazine cover on newsstands, Stipe, 57, had to pose with it — hat, eyewear, toothy grin, and all.
His caption was, “So f***ed up,” but it really should have been something about how — minus the nose ring — they are seriously identical. His fans agreed. Comments ranged from “Dave stole your look” to “So many Santas.” There were quite a few R.E.M. jokes, including, “SHINY HAPPY PPL” and “David LetteREM.”
Letterman, who has been working hard to grow that thing since he retired in May 2015, talked again about his unruly facial hair in his new interview. Basically, he says the Walt Whitman look has left him unrecognizable to fans. The ones who do recognize him are worried about his mental health — just because of his crazy-man beard.
“I was in New York City standing on Sixth Avenue, and a woman on the sidewalk looked at me, and she said, ‘Do you have a television show?’” the 69-year-old comedian recounted. “‘No, I don’t.’ ‘Did you used to have a television show?’ ‘Yes, I did.’ ‘What happened?’ ‘I got fired.’ ‘Are you David Letterman?’ ‘Yes, I am.’ And then she said, ‘Man, they f***ed you up.’”
Though he doesn’t blame late-night TV for anything. “If anybody f***ed me up, it was me, by getting old and stupid,” he said.
Same self-deprecating humor! Another reason it’s fun to see Stipe and Letterman in the same shot is that R.E.M. made its first national TV appearance on Late Night With David Letterman in 1983. It all comes full circle.
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