Dave Chappelle performed Thursday night (February 14) to two sold-out audiences in Charlotte, North Carolina, informing the crowd from the beginning, “We have a lot to talk about.”
Smollett had, in Chappelle’s words, faked the attack against him to stay on Empire.
Chappelle joked that it made him so mad he wanted to break a dollhouse over the star’s head, referencing one of the jokes that brought criticism to Hart.
He questioned a number of elements of Smollett’s story, saying he was skeptical from the beginning, despite wanting to believe him. Even Scooby-Doo, he joked, would have questioned the veracity of the actor and singer’s account.
Chappelle also wondered who would have rope with them in Chicago, and why he waited so long to report the incident to police, as well as why he would keep the noose around his neck.
Chappelle doubted that too, saying it sounded more like something he would say, and asked how anyone could get through watching that show if they hated gay people, due to its high level of LGBTQ representation.
He repeatedly expressed his anger that, in his belief, Smollett had lied about the attack, saying it would hurt the credibility of real victims of anti-gay and racist violence, and joked that he hoped “the gays” take the brunt of the blow back.
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