A comedian known for his ragged, sleeveless appearance, as well as for his cartoonish, exaggerated Southern drawl. He is a member of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour, a comedy troupe that also comprises Jeff Foxworthy and Bill Engvall. Ron White was also a fourth member of this motley crew, but dropped out in late 2007 due to creative differences.
Born Daniel Whitney, he honed the Larry character through a series of radio skits before taking to stand up comedy. His first album, Lord, I Apologize, was released in 2001. Since then, he has had six more albums, including two Christmas discs.
Larry has also starred in the movies Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector, Delta Farce (which also starred Engvall) and Witless Protection, but is probably best known for voicing the tow truck Tow Mater in Pixar's Cars movies and shorts. He has also written a book called, unsurprisingly, Git-R-Done.
His comedy? Well, it's very informal, very crass, and certainly immature. Jokes about fat people, lesbians, handicapped people, retarded people and, of course, a healthy dose of Toilet Humor... most often followed with a "Just Joking" Justification. Although he has his share of detractors, Larry has proved to have a non-trivial fan base; his first three albums are certified gold, and he had the cachet to voice a character in a Pixar film. He also began a show called Only in America on The History Channel in 2010.
Tropes in his work:
- Author Tract: Most of the latter half of the book Git-R-Done is Larry ranting on politics and just about anything else that bugs him.
- Becoming the Mask
- Catch Phrase: "Git-r-done!", "That's funny, I don't care who you are," and if he thinks a joke was a little racy, "Lord, I apologize." The first two got an Actor Allusion in Cars.
- Deep South: Although he's from Nebraska, Larry has said that he identifies more with the Southern lifestyle, and feels more comfortable in character.
- Dissimile: "I met this gal a while back, looked like Shania Twain. Only a little shorter and, uh, the face was different. I was drunk, she looked like Shania Twain."
- Exploding Fishtanks: The joke starts with him talking about going dynamite fishing with his buddies and ends with, "We blew the aquarium at the dentist office sky high!"
- Fan Disservice: He likes to do a lot of shirtless scenes in movies and shows, doesn't he?
- Hollywood Tourettes: He joked that his deaf cousin also has Tourette's, and demonstrated it by randomly Flipping the Bird while signing.
- "Just Joking" Justification: "Lord, I apologize" is one of his ways to assure his listeners that he is only joking. He often adds, "Be with the starvin' pygmies down in New Guinea. Amen."
- Non-Indicative Name: The character of Larry is rarely, if ever, portrayed as an actual cable guy anymore. In fact, his first starring role is in the film Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector. Is he a cable guy or a health inspector?
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Larry's books are filled with spelling errors, but he will also launch into surprisingly well-researched arguments about things that bug him. He even explained Darwin's theory of Natural Selection properly. He is also one of the highest celebrity winners on Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader? .
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Since starting Only In America, he's been put in startling or scary enough situations that he's dropped character a few times. Probably surprising for people that don't realize it is just a character, which dovetails nicely into:
- Poe's Law: Larry pisses off an impressive number of self-professed intellectuals who seem to be completely unaware that he's just a fictitious character played by a comedian. Andrew Dice Clay pulled off a similar ruse years before.
- To be fair, as the Larry persona has become Whitney's primary money-maker, he rarely, if ever, appears in public out of character (see Secret Identity Identity below). He has gone so far as to stay in character as Larry for a 60 Minutes interview; his only concession for that more serious venue was to tone down his affected Southern accent to a more conversational tone.
- Political Correctness Gone Mad: He did a routine where he translated Twas The Night Before Christmas into PC-speak. Non-denominational Holiday Figure's trademark "ho ho ho" was replaced with "lady-of-the-evening lady-of-the-evening lady-of-the-evening."
- Refuge in Audacity: Plenty of jokes about fat women, handicapped people, retarded people, lesbians and fat, handicapped, retarded lesbians.
- Secret Identity Identity: According to some who have worked with him, satirist Daniel Whitney is slowly vanishing behind Larry the Cable Guy (which has also gone from being a satirical character he did at the end of his stand-up routines to being the whole thing and losing the satire).
- Self-Deprecation: All the time. One sterling example comes after he flubbed a line in one joke:
Larry: I met a girl who stunk Spanish—spunk Spanish—spoke Spanish! I'm hearing a lot of this for the first time, myself.
- Sexy Stewardess: Discussed in one sketch, when he ponders why he only ever seems to meet stewardesses who look like "The Oak Ridge Boys with titties".
- Sleeves Are for Wimps: He even named one album The Right to Bare Arms.
- Sophisticated As Hell: Claims that "Git-R-Done!" is short for:
"To thine own self be true, and it must follow as the day the night, thou canst not then not be false to any man!"
- El Spanish-O: When introducing the song "I Believe," he says, "Or, in the Spanish, el believe-o."
- Sure, Let's Go with That: While bagging his own groceries at a Wal-Mart, being in a hurry, he was mistaken for a mentally-handicapped store employee.
Larry: A woman came up to me, patted me on the head and said, "I think it's wonderful they hire people like you." (Face Palm) And I went, (mentally-handicapped voice) "Thank you!" And I pooped my pants and ran her over with my cart!
- Trademark Favorite Food: Moon Pies.
- Vocal Evolution: The "Larry" voice has become noticeably rougher and deeper over time, perhaps as the result of smoking.