Ricky Gervais seems to be taking a note from Dave Chappelle’s book.
The comedian’s latest Netflix comedy special, SuperNature, is drawing criticism from LGBTQ activists who say the comedian is punching down on the transgender community. This, after last year’s debacle over Chappelle’s anti-trans jokes on his special, The Closer, that created a slew of problems for the streaming giant — including an employee-staged walkout.
Criticism isn’t new to Gervais. In fact, he was fully expecting it this time around. Last week, the comedian was a guest on SiriusXM’s Jim Norton & Sam Robertsshow, where he opened up about the potential backlash the special might bring.
“To me, there’s nothing controversial in that because it’s just jokes,” Gervais said of the transphobic jokes at the time. “I even explain what ‘irony’ is at the beginning of the f****** show, and everyone there, I don’t know how many people I played to — half a million people — no complaints. They laughed at all the things, right?”
“Everyone’s gonna complain about everything in it. Every single line, someone is going to complain, either because they hate it, they don’t get it, it’s coming after,” he continued. “Here’s the thing about comedy. I can list 20 taboo subjects. Everyone in the world laughs at 19 of them, and hates the one that affects them.”
In SuperNature, Gervais made jokes about the trans community within the first five minutes.
“Oh, women!” the comedian said at the beginning of the special. “Not all women, I mean the old-fashioned ones. The old-fashioned women, the ones with wombs.”
“I love the new women,” he continued. “They’re great, aren’t they? The new ones we’ve been seeing lately. The ones with beards and c***. They’re as good as gold, I love them. And now the old-fashioned ones say, ‘Oh, they want to use our toilets.’ ‘Why shouldn’t they use your toilets?’ ‘For ladies!’ ‘They are ladies — look at their pronouns! What about this person isn’t a lady?’ ‘Well, his penis.’ ‘Her penis, you f****** bigot!’ ‘What if he rapes me?’ ‘What if she rapes you, you f****** TERF whore?’”
“TERF,”,or Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist, has been used to describe a feminist who believes that biological sex determines gender, which contradicts the argument trans and nonbinary activists have made in recent years to affirm their existence — that gender identity is more complex and nuanced than one’s biological sex.
The comedian, whose second Netflix comedy special Armageddon is set to release later this year, also poked fun at trans people later in the special when discussing Kevin Hart removing himself from hosting the Oscars in 2018 after a series of past homophobic tweets resurfaced.
“You can’t predict what will be offensive in the future,” Gervais said of Hart’s backlash from queer activists. “You don’t know who the dominant mob will be. Like, the worst thing you can say today, get you canceled on Twitter, death threats, the worst thing you can say today is, ‘Women don’t have penises,’ right? Now, no one saw that coming. You won’t find a 10-year-old tweet saying ‘Women don’t have penises.’ You know why? We didn’t think we f****** had to!”
“She’s brilliant, isn’t she?” he said. “She’s not only a great comedienne, she’s also a great actress, isn’t she? She was brilliant in that thing as that man.” He also wondered what life would be if he were a teenager in today’s “woke times,” during which he said he would “self-ID” as trans because it would be “trendy.”
“I’d have a big fanny,” he said. “I’d be a real woman… I’d be a little lesbian fella called Vicky Gervais… I’d probably be a butch lesbian ’cause of all the testosterone till then.”
Gervais circled back towards the end of the special, saying, “Full disclosure: In real life of course I support trans rights. I support all human rights, and trans rights are human rights. Live your best life. Use your preferred pronouns. Be the gender that you feel you are.
“But meet me halfway, ladies,” he added. “Lose the c***. That’s all I’m saying.”
Following the release of the special, many Twitter users aired their grievances over Gervais’s remarks. GLAAD, the leading organization advocating for LGBTQ acceptance and visibility across all media, said the standup special is “full of graphic, dangerous, anti-trans rants masquerading as jokes.”ORDER A COPY OF ROB’S NEW BEST SELLING BOOK! Called “America’s Number ONE Gossip Columnist” by The National Enquirer. Rob ‘Naughty But Nice’ Shuter breaks celebrity news every day on his website NaughtyGossip.com where he delivers all the dish about the stars we love in his naughty but nice signature style. You can also catch him co-hosting and breaking celebrity news on Good Day New York, The Today Show, The Talk, Wendy Williams Show, CNN, Extra and Z100’s ‘Elvis Duran.’ Previously, Rob was the Huffington Post’s only celebrity columnist and the former executive editor of OK! Magazine. Rob has also hosted his own Saturday night talk show on Mark Cuban’s channel and his own daily morning show, ‘The Gossip Table,’ on VH1! Breaking some of the biggest entertainment stories, including Jamie Lynn Spears’s pregnancy news, Britney’s first post-meltdown interview, Eva Longoria’s wedding, and baby exclusives for Jessica Alba, Tori Spelling and Mathew McConaughey’s tots, Rob always knows where to find the best scoop. Before Rob was one of the world’s most successful entertainment reporters, he was a publicist working for Jennifer Lopez, Alicia Keys, P. Diddy, Jessica Simpson and Jon Bon Jovi! Now he is bringing all this experience to his new show on I HEART MEDIA in his unique cheeky way, that is always a pinch and never a punch!