George Denis Patrick Carlin (b. May 12, 1937 – d. June 22, 2008) was an American stand-up comedian. He was also an actor and author, and won four Grammy Awards for his comedy albums.
Carlin was noted for his black humor as well as insights on politics, the English language, psychology, religion, and various taboo subjects. Carlin and his “Seven Dirty Words” comedy routine were central to the 1978 U.S. Supreme Court case F.C.C. v. Pacifica Foundation, in which a narrow 5–4 decision by the justices affirmed the government’s power to regulate indecent material on the public airwaves.
In the 1990s and 2000s, Carlin’s stand-up routines focused on the flaws in modern-day America. He often took on contemporary political issues in the United States and satirized the excesses of American culture.
Carlin was placed second on the Comedy Central cable television network list of the 100 greatest stand-up comedians, ahead of Lenny Bruce and behind Richard Pryor.He was a frequent performer and guest host on The Tonight Show during the three-decade Johnny Carson era, and was also the first person to host Saturday Night Live.