Dave Chappelle addressed the backlash his latest comedy special has received during a performance in Los Angeles.
During the show, which took place at L.A.’s Hollywood Bowl, Chappelle dismissed the idea of cancel culture, saying, “If this is what being canceled is like, I love it,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. The Reporter goes on to note that Chappelle also called out social media platforms like Twitter, as well as news channels like NBC and ABC, saying, “Fuck Twitter. Fuck NBC News, ABC News, all these stupid ass networks. I’m not talking to them. I’m talking to you. This is real life.”
The response comes as criticism against Chappelle’s The Closer has intensified. GLAAD, The National Black Justice Coalition, and Dear White People writer and show runner Jaclyn Moore, have called on Netflix to pull the special for its transphobic sentiments and other jabs directed at the LGBTQ community.
“Dave Chappelle’s brand has become synonymous with ridiculing trans people and other marginalized communities. Negative reviews and viewers loudly condemning his latest special is a message to the industry that audiences don’t support platforming anti-LGBTQ diatribes. We agree,” wrote GLAAD in a retweet of an NPR review of The Closer. David Johns, executive director of the NBJC, issued a statement on the special on behalf of the organization.
“With 2021 on track to be the deadliest year on record for transgender people in the United States — the majority of whom are Black transgender people — Netflix should know better. Perpetuating transphobia perpetuates violence,” Johns wrote. “Netflix should immediately pull The Closer from its platform and directly apologize to the transgender community,” he added.
As for Moore, who is a trans woman, she shared in an interview with Variety that she would no longer be working with Netflix after watching The Closer.
“Look, I have no desire to cancel Dave Chappelle. He should make whatever he wants to make but I will say to Netflix, it’s not like this was a live special,” Moore said. “They saw this and were like, ‘Yeah this seems okay to put out there.’ The truth is it’s not.”