Watch Louis C.K. Explain The Filthiest Joke He Ever Wrote For Conan

While Louis C.K. is now an actor and producer starring in his own stand-up specials, as well as FX’s Louie, that wasn’t always so. C.K. used to write for other people, and on last night’s Late Night with Seth Meyers, the comedian recounted the filthiest joke he ever managed to get on the air while working for Conan O’Brien. If your workplace is not alright with dirty jokes, it’s probably NSFW. Otherwise, check it out.

Louis C.K.’s story has a lot of backstory to get to the punchline. Back in the day, the comedian was a writer for Conan O’Brien, and instead of trying to figure out how to write for the late night host, he instead learned how to sneakily get jokes onto TV without anyone being the wiser. One day, he realized no one fact-checked the announcer’s one-liners, and as soon as the opportunity arose, C.K. snuck in a very naughty joke.

We came up with one, which he {said], “Last night, the missus gave me a pearl necklace.” Yeah, [he had] about a 40% understanding of what the joke was.

Obviously, most of the time when we think of pearl necklaces, we think of the lovely necklaces worn to church and other classy-but-old-school functions. That type of necklace was obviously not what C.K. was referring to, but he later says even the head writer on Conan’s show at the time didn’t get the joke, thinking it was more innocuous than hyper-sexualized. If you're still confused, you can get the slang definition here, at your own risk.

In the time since his days writing on O’Brien’s series, Louis C.K. has cobbled together a comedy personality that is both frank and hilarious. On FX’s Louie, the comedian can get away with much wilder jokes. This season, in fact, there is a whole scene where Louie is out shopping with his daughters and realizes he has to poop really badly. He can’t leave his kids alone, so he brings them on an epic poop journey through town, trying to find a restroom. The cold open is crass and hysterical and like nothing that would ever make network television, that is, unless the joke is snuck in.

TV’s come a long way since the days of pearl necklace jokes, but I’d still give anything to see a late night sidekick slip in a joke of that ilk, today. You can catch more stories like these on NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers, weekdays at 12:35 a.m.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Reality TV fan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. Theme park junkie. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.