The remaining cast of Impractical Jokers has revealed how they are going to deal with the departure of original member Joe Gatto. In a recent Instagram post, it appears the remaining trio of James “Murr” Murray, Brian “Q” Quinn, and Sal Vulcano are going to adjust the show by…pretty much keeping on doing as is. While there has been some speculation that Impractical Jokers would bring in a new cast member to replace Gatto, it turns out that they will continue on as a trio. This is honestly probably the best-case scenario, as it is a key part of the show’s appeal that the (formerly) four members of the cast are longtime friends who met in high school. Check out the post here:
On New Year’s Eve 2021, Joe Gatto announced his departure from Impractical Jokers via Instagram. The lengthy text in the caption struck a more serious note than is normal for a man who made his career playing pranks on his buddies, but essentially, he praised the show and showed an enormous amount of gratitude for its success and longevity. According to Gatto, he and his spouse Bessy Haggar has decided to amicably divorce and he wanted to focus as much time and attention as possible on co-parenting their children.
As regrettable as the dissolution of any marriage can be, it actually sounds like a pretty good reason to walk away from a long-running show. It is also somewhat of a comfort that Gatto leaving Impractical Jokers was not due to a falling out among the friends or for contractual disputes. Given how many famous shows (and friendships) have been destroyed in the entertainment industry because of ego and money, this is actually kind of sweet.
Impractical Jokers first premiered on truTV in 2011 and has enjoyed the kind of reality prank show longevity maybe only rivaled by Jackass. But while that venerable institution of beating up your friends for laughs on-screen has increasingly become mired in interpersonal conflicts and lawsuits, Impractical Jokers has a surprising amount of warmth to it still. That is likely one of the reasons for its sustained popularity over the years. Nine seasons and a feature-length movie is pretty good for a show as simple in premise as it can be. And hopefully, the upcoming tenth one will not suffer too badly for the loss of Joe Gatto. After all, the show is also noted for its glut of guest stars, including luminaries like Rosie O’Donnell, N’Sync’s Joey Fatone, and Australia’s Thunder from Down Under all-male dance revue.
Aside from the tenth season in production, Impractical Jokers has had a number of short-lived spin-offs, including Jokers Wild and the Covid-19 response video chat show Impractical Jokers: Dinner Party. Hopefully Murr, Q, and Sal will be able to keep up the quality and tone that made them so popular for so long, even without Joe there. And who knows, we can always live in hope of a reunion show someday down the road.