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updated: 3/28/2012 7:48 AM

Joan Rivers' St. Charles shows to be on Showtime

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  • Joan Rivers

    Joan Rivers

  • Joan Rivers

    Joan Rivers

  • Video: Joan Rivers on Ed Sullivan


Remember, years ago, when Joan Rivers used to say, "Can we tawk?"

She's still talking.

It's hard to avoid her famously raspy New York-accented voice, which is everywhere from reality TV to QVC, and from cartoon voice-overs to

Since launching her career from Chicago's Second City stage in 1961, Rivers has become a comedy legend, making people laugh (or sometimes cringe) with her brash, un-P.C. style of comedy.

Even as she nears her 79th birthday this June, Rivers' workaholic ways have kept her involved in a dozen projects in comedy, fashion, TV and commercials -- maintaining a pace that would exhaust anyone one-fourth her age.

That hectic schedule includes a return trip to St. Charles this weekend. She'll be performing two, back-to-back stand-up comedy shows at the Arcada Theatre that will be filmed for a future airing on Showtime.

Until then, look for her critiquing celebrity fashions on E!'s "Fashion Police," (the show was just expanded to one hour each week), selling her popular clothing line on QVC and bickering with her daughter, Melissa, on WE-TV's reality show, "Joan and Melissa: Joan Knows Best."

Below is an excerpt of a recent interview with Rivers, where she talks about everything from how she'd like to die to Angelina Jolie's leg:

Q. Tell me about the show you're doing in St. Charles.

A. It's the same person screaming into the wind. I'm still as outraged as ever. Age has not softened the blow. It's a much rougher world, and comedy just reflects it.

Q. So, making fun of celebrities, talking about current events, telling stories of the old days ...?

A. No old days stories. The old days are yesterday. It's gonna be about Snooki, Whitney Houston and all that kind of stuff. It's always what's going on in the world that we'll discuss.

Q. On "Fashion Police," you often refer to the Joan Rangers. Who are they?

A.They're people that began to write in, and they watch every show -- they're avid fans. They're starting up a website, with contests and everything. It's just beginning, but it's so cute. I'll see them in the airport and they say, "I'm a Joan Ranger!" They're a lot of gay guys and female fashionistas. We're going to deputize them. We're going to give them little badges so they can make a fashion arrest.

(Follow them on Twitter at @joan_rangers. To get a badge, you have to attend a taping of the show or be given one by Joan herself.)

Q. You can be kinda mean when you're criticizing celebrities. Do they ever respond to your comments?

A. I'm a critic. That's my job. I can't worry about the actor who's wearing the dress. We were the first ones who said Angelina Jolie looks like an (expletive) when she stuck out her leg (during the Academy Awards).

Q. That was ridiculous ...

A. She worked so hard to change her image and become refined. To say, "I'm no longer a tramp, I now work for the U.N.," or whatever. And then she blew it all by sticking that stupid leg out. You just know she posed in front of the mirror at home and practiced that.

Q. Who is the most annoying celebrity right now?

A. Lea Michele from "Glee." She always is posing and posing and posing. You want to say, "Just relax. We're all in this together."

Q. It seems like you have a nice chemistry with the "Fashion Police" crew (Giuliana Rancic, Kelly Osbourne and George Kotsiopoulos).

A.We all enjoy everyone. It's such a pleasure. Before the show, we'll all be popping our heads into each other's dressing rooms and saying "Hi." Kelly and George don't understand how lucky we are because they haven't been in the business that long. But it is so nice to work with people you like.

Q. Are you going to go to Giuliana and Bill Rancic's new restaurant (RPM Italian) before your Chicago show?

A. No. Before a show? Don't talk to me. This will be two shows. It will be focus, focus, focus. Don't talk to grandma.

Q. What do you do to relax?

A. I go to theater. I adore live theater. That is a wonderful evening. But really relaxing is crossword puzzles, painting and reading. I'm a voracious reader.

Q. Don't you want to retire in your old age? You'd be comfortable.

A. And do what? How boring! Some friends of mine moved up to Connecticut. They said they'll take their dog for walks and sit by the fire. OK, that's one day. Then what? They're going out of their minds.

Q. So you're going to keep working until you drop?

A. Until I drop dead. I hope it's onstage. That'll make a great special.

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