Like many other old-school entertainment icons, former phenom Andrew Dice Clay has turned to reality TV to remind the public of his existence. But unlike Bobby Brown or Danny Bonaduce, who seemed to enjoy airing their dirty laundry, Clay signed up for VH1's Dice: Undisputed (Sundays at 10 pm/ET) with a very specific goal in mind: to land a gig at Giants Stadium. Though this may sound like a pipe dream, Clay won't hear it. In fact, in the second episode he fired his longtime booking agent for dubbing Clay's aspirations "a fantasy." Call him a has-been, call him a pop-culture punch line.... He'll just curse you out then continue with his plans. And that single-mindedness makes him strangely endearing, like an R-rated teddy bear with very sharp claws.
[Editor's note: For maximum amusement, be sure to imagine all of Clay's answers in a quintessential "Noo Yawk" accent.]
TVGuide.com: Is this the Diceman?
Andrew Dice Clay: Yeah, it is. Hey, I know I'm calling New York, but I don't know where I'm calling.
TVGuide.com: This is TVGuide.com. You must have recognized our 212 area code. Does that make you wistful for home?
Clay: I go back there a lot anyways. I always stay in Manhattan when I'm there.
TVGuide.com: You abandon your native borough of Brooklyn?
Clay: Nah, I go there every night. I'm Brooklyn all the way, always have been. It's just that there's really no place to stay there, unless I want to stay at the Golden Gate Motel. Do you know the Golden Gate? I used to hang there every summer at the pool. It's right in Sheepshead Bay.
TVGuide.com: To be honest, although I'm the daughter of a Brooklyn-bred mother, I grew up in Manhattan and I don't know your borough that well.
Clay: Maybe I should be talking to your mother then! You know what I mean? [Laughs] I was just back East and I drove through Brooklyn and it was sad. The club that I started in, Pips, doesn't exist anymore. The late owner, George Schultz, really helped David Brenner. So when David made it, he always took care of George.
TVGuide.com: I actually got a funny little e-mail from Brenner a while back regarding a Q&A I did with Richard Lewis.
Clay: Yeah, we're all great friends. I actually saw Richard a couple of months ago. He just got married and I gave him advice about that: "The day's going to come when you're not going to be that happy with your wife. But don't ever, for any reason, not for a moment, think of divorcing her. The War of the Roses was the comedy version of what really goes on. Get 100 girlfriends. I don't care if your wife cuts one of your feet off. Tell her you know it was an accident and that you still love her. And never ever divorce."
TVGuide.com: Wow, that's some advice! So how come you're getting married for a third time, to ex-professional wrestler Eleanor Kerrigan?
Clay: Actually... right now things are pretty crazy between me and Eleanor.
TVGuide.com: That's too bad. On the show, you two really complement each other. She can dish it out as well as you do, and she's great with your two sons.
Clay: She's a wonderful person and I really love her. But there's just too much fighting. Right now we're at a standstill. It's hard. She talks to, like, every guy. Boyfriends, friends... if it's a guy, she'll talk to them. And that gets me mad. She calls me prehistoric, and maybe she's right. But I'm not into the guy-girl friendship thing.
TVGuide.com: Unless the guys are gay.
Clay: Even then! You never know, he might turn. She's a good-looking girl.
TVGuide.com: It sounds like you're not getting married.
Clay: I don't know.... She wants to invite, like, 300 to 400 people. I told her, "I can't be paraded around to hundreds of people that I've never met who just want a picture with Dice. I'll never do that." And she's going, "Well, I want a real wedding!" And I'm like, "You know what? Then marry a real person."
TVGuide.com: So you're not a real person?
Clay: Who I am as a performer is not necessarily who I am as a human being.
TVGuide.com: I was wondering about that. Like on your show, how much of that is you and how much is your Dice persona?
Clay: Oh, I'm myself on the show! There are a lot of sides to me. There's the side that goes on stage and talks about sexual things because I know what people are like behind closed doors, 'cause I'm one of them. I'm just honest enough to admit it. But I'm also a father and a boyfriend. The fights with Eleanor are real and so are the loving scenes with my sons.
TVGuide.com: What prompted you to sign on for a reality show?
Clay: I've been filming myself since 1988 for fun. I've got footage of when my eldest son was born and I'm holding him, telling him, "Your father's the filthiest comic in the world." I just get everything, you know? And now with the reality [craze], I figured I should do this kind of show. My career has been a roller-coaster ride. It isn't easy. I'm like a real-life Rocky Balboa because I'm not just going after anything. I'm going after Giants Stadium.
TVGuide.com: How close do you think you are to playing there?
Clay: I think I could do it this summer.
Clay: I know I can sell it. I'll do at least 50,000 people. Hands down, I'm the biggest draw there ever was in the history of stand-up.
TVGuide.com: What are you going to do if it flops?
Clay: It could never be a flop! What would be a flop? The worst-case scenario would be, like, 30,000 people.
TVGuide.com: What do you say to all those haters who don't think you can do it?
Clay: I don't care about those people or what they think. I've been through this before. When I first made it in show business, I became a lightning rod for every group in America to attack. I was just doing what I did, and the media went nuts. I was filling 20,000 seats a night. And I'll do it again. Look what George Foreman did, how he came back and became champ. That's what I want to do. If I was a phenomenon once, then I will be again.
Think Dice rocks? Well, we think NBC's 30 Rock rocks. Read why, in the April 2 issue of TV Guide. Click here to subscribe.