It’s fascinating how a tired old gag between friends became one of the most universally recognizable comedic lines of all time. “It was stuff in Tommy Boy that was funny to us, that we hoped was funny to other people,” Spade said.
In a Reddit AMA a year back, Spade gave us a glimpse into the execution of the scene.
And so when we did Tommy Boy, we were just looking for jokes and scenes to make them better, and we decided that was funny to us, maybe it would be funny to there people. So we put “Fat guy in a little coat” in and he sang it (which was funny, and not the plan), and then we had to cut the coat in the back to make sure it would rip. So that was a long answer for the question of “did he really rip it.” We had to make sure it would rip, and sound funny, so we had to help it a little bit.
Farley, your legacy lives on through the memories I’m too drunk to remember.