Following the public uproar that a leaked Louis C.K. set about the Parkland shooting survivors caused in December, the disgraced comedian is now trying to protect himself by threatening would-be leakers with copyright infringement. Despite these measures, however, Louis’ standing hasn’t changed for the better since he admitted to numerous accounts of sexual misconduct over his storied career. Among other things, that’s because — as Australian comic Hannah Gadsby recently put it — he’s “angry and bitter.”
Gadsby, whose Netflix special Nanette took the comedy world by storm last summer, is currently touring her new show Douglas in the United States. She sat down with the Los Angeles Times to discuss it this past weekend, and Louis came up because of a joke she performs in the show. Reflecting on her claim in Nanette that she was quitting comedy (which she obviously hasn’t), Gadsby says that she “quit comedy the same way Louis C.K. said he was sorry.” So, what does she really think about him?
“He is a joke now. And I think it’s important to keep making that joke. This is dangerous to talk about, but I’ll give it a go. What the issue is, for a long time Louis C.K.’s comedy platform was that he was this hopeless guy bumbling through the world. And at some stage, he was no longer that, but that was still his voice. And I think he still believes that. He has not reassessed his position of power, and that is why he was able to abuse it. It’s difficult to see a shift in your own power and privilege. It’s not something we’re trained to do. He still honestly thinks he’s the victim in all of this.”
“He’s saying the same kinds of things,” she continued. “The material hasn’t changed. He’s just angry and bitter.”
Despite her harsh words for Louis, Gadsby isn’t on board with the idea of censoring someone like him simply because he’s said something that was deemed offensive. “I could never advocate censorship. Censorship is useless because it leaves a gap where we learned a lesson,” she said, before referring to Pablo Picasso — an example she discusses at length in Nanette — for context.
“I’m not a fan. But I am a fan,” Gadsby explained. “I’m not a fan of the gap that was left in his story, that he was a toxic, hostile individual and that his behavior was enabled by the community around him. But if you were to wipe him from our collective memory, we not only lose what he did well, we lose what he did badly. And we can learn from both.”
(Via Los Angeles Times)