Over the weekend, three female comedians — Wendy Liebman, Kathleen Madigan, and Tammy Pescatelli — took to Twitter to accuse Amy Schumer of stealing their jokes and repeating them in everything from Trainwreck to Inside Amy Schumer to Schumer’s recent HBO special. The three women have since deleted the tweets, but Refinery29 captured most of them. (Schumer has also been accused of stealing jokes from Patrice O’Neal.)
The pile-on kicked off with a now-deleted tweet from Liebman: “Between Amy Schumer doing 1 of my best jokes on her HBO special and this meme of my joke, I’m done with social media.” Writer Chuck Martin responded to Liebman’s tweet, encouraging fellow comedian Madigan to join Liebman in speaking out.
Pescatelli chimed in soon thereafter. “What has always been amazing to me is that she purports to be a feminist and yet only steals from other female comedians. If we call her on it we are ‘jealous’ or career shamed. Be successful. WE want you to do well, just do it will your own material. BTW she blocked me.”
Some of the jokes Pescatelli accused Schumer of stealing include a Kathleen Madigan sketch called “Slap Oprah,” which she says Schumer appropriated and turned into a sketch called “Slap Chef.” “So many more [jokes] but nobody listens,” tweeted Pescatelli. “At least Cosby knocked his victims out b4 he raped them.” Despite the enraged stream of tweets, Pescatelli claimed she had “no beef” with Schumer, and was merely “presenting facts of oppression and degradation.” “I tell my truth today, because I too, have a dream…… #MLKDay,” she added.
According to the Daily Mail, Pescatelli also compared a joke from her 2006 Comedy Central special to a line from Trainwreck. Here’s Pescatelli’s joke: “As a woman, I will admit, women dress for other women. That’s why men, if we love you, we dress you for other women too. That’s why we dress you stupid. Because we want another woman to look at you and go ‘he’s cute but I can’t fix all of this.’ Who do you think invented the Hawaiian shirt?”
And here’s Schumer’s, from a scene in which she makes fun of her the way her sister’s (Brie Larson) husband dresses: “You dress him like that so nobody else wants to have sex with him? That’s cool.”
Though Madigan didn’t weigh in with her own tweets, she retweeted the below, from a Twitter user named Candy Dax:
For her part, after deleting all of her previous tweets on the matter, Liebman posted the following:
Later, Liebman posted this:
And two hours ago, though, Liebman doubled down on her earlier accusations:
Until Wednesday, Schumer had remained completely silent on the matter, but late in the afternoon, Schumer finally weighed in with a simple statement: “On my life, I have never and would never steal a joke.” Most of the responses thus far to Schumer’s tweet have been positive and supportive, with fans calling the accusations “weak” and “ludicrous.” Even would-be stand-up comedian Zach Braff has Schumer’s back: