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Written by Eric Mitts
Standup comedian Heather McDonald is always searching for the steamiest, most scandalous and shocking stories from Hollywood. And when she finds them, she’s never shy about sharing.
From the comedy stage to late-night TV and her own binge-worthy podcast, Juicy Scoop with Heather McDonald, the 46-year-old comedian, mother and author has always loved the thrill of the dish.
“I had one magazine subscription when I was young: People Magazine,” McDonald said. “I would read it cover to cover and then spread all my copies around me. (So) I thought about how great would it be if I could just talk to everyone about my magazines. I now have that forum with Juicy Scoop.”
With more than one million downloads per month and several devoted fan pages on social media, Juicy Scoop is a hit for McDonald, who hosts, writes and produces the podcast.
“I love all things juicy like Dateline, gossip from friends, Hollywood romances — whatever I think is a juicy scoop,” McDonald said. “Then I get to share it with a group of people who have the same passion.”
Like a combination of Joan Rivers and Nancy Grace, Juicy Scoop takes a more investigative look into celebrity gossip and other hot topic headlines than most tabloid programs. McDonald started the podcast in June 2015 and she’s since featured many of her celebrity friends — including NSYNC’s Lance Bass, who recently discussed his experiences with Scientology on the show.
The podcast also allows McDonald to continue to showcase her unique knack for celebrity impressions. She’s absolutely mastered the likes of Celine Dion, Jennifer Aniston, Kris Jenner, Kim Cattrall’s Samantha from Sex and the City, and several of the Real Housewives. And even after years of performing, she’s not tired of doing any of them.
“I have meet-and-greets after my shows and I’ll happily do the impressions all night long for any fan who asks,” she said.
If she had to pick just one, her favorite impression is still Drew Barrymore.
“She’s such a naturally positive, sweet person,” McDonald said of Barrymore. “It’s easy to get her point of view, so I can write new material all the time.”
Although there have been some headlines online touting a feud between McDonald and her former collaborator Chelsea Handler — with whom she worked as a staff writer and roundtable regular on the E! hit series Chelsea Lately for seven years — there’s actually nothing juicy about their relationship now.
“She’s doing another project and I wish her the best,” McDonald said of Handler, who currently hosts Chelsea on Netflix.
McDonald’s first-ever comedy special, I Don’t Mean To Brag, debuted on Showtime in 2014 and earned countless new fans when it premiered on Netflix in 2015. That same year, she also co-hosted TLC’s late-night roundtable show All About Sex, where she proved that motherhood hasn’t changed her comedy.
“When I was single I would talk about dating, girlfriends, my parents,” McDonald said of her early days in comedy.
Anyone who has read either of her best-selling tell-all memoirs — 2010’s You’ll Never Blue Ball in This Town Again: One Woman’s Painfully Funny Quest to Give It Up and 2013’s My Inappropriate Life (Some Stories Not Suitable for Nuns, Children, or Mature Adults) — already know she’s not one to hold back on anything in her own life either.
“When I became a mom, I would talk more about my family, husband and children,” she said. “But my act is still full of pop culture, what’s going on in the world with celebrities, and stories about my single friends.”
See Heather McDonald perform:
Dr. Grins Comedy Club, 20 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
May 18-20, $10-$20