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Louis C.K. returned to the Canadian stage last night at Toronto’s Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club last night for the first of five sold-out nights.
C.K., the comedic legend who was seemingly banished from society for his “Me Too” moment (masturbating in front of women with their consent) was greeted with roaring applause from the Toronto stadium, which seats roughly 300 people.
C.K. has had tough time being re-integrated into hyper-woke society that has grown exponentially since his exile. A leaked set of his, recorded without his knowledge and mercilessly taken out of context by joyless authoritarian “fans of comedy,” made headlines not for how funny it was, but rather for how offensive it was.
The usual suspects were all at play, ready to take down C.K. for his jokes regarding Stoneman Douglas High School survivors.
“They testify in front of Congress, these kids,” said C.K. “What the f-ck? What are you doing? You’re young. You should be crazy, you should be unhinged—not in a suit saying: ‘I’m here to tell…’ F-ck you! You’re not interesting because you went to a high school where kids got shot.”
“Why does that mean I have to listen to you?” the comedian continued. “How does that make you interesting? You didn’t get shot. You pushed some fat kid in the way, and now I’ve got to listen to you talking?”
Oftentimes in comedy, it can be a bit easier for high-ranking comedians to say just about anything they want and be able to get away with a laugh. Generally, comedians who have spent most their lifetimes perfecting their craft know the pacing, the phrasing, and the general ins-and-outs of a joke, and can deliver it with a high degree of effectiveness.
I’m going to have to go out on a limb and say that joking about a high school massacre which saw 17 dead squanders all of that, potentially putting you in some real hot water. It’s lines like those that can see a set go belly up in a hurry. But alas, people laughed. Because it was funny.
C.K. walks the line of what’s acceptable wonderfully, and those who don’t understand this may just have a hard time keeping up. Taking jokes literally, and at face value is a good way to never laugh again in your life.
So when Now Toronto‘s review of C.K.’s first set started with an excerpt that reads, “the mostly white, male audience ate up jokes about sexual misconduct, Asians, gays and Justin Trudeau,” you knew it wasn’t going to be an actual assessment of C.K’s jokes, but rather an assessment of how much C.K. would kowtow to social justice authoritarians who, frankly, don’t understand stand-up comedy.
To their credit, they are beginning to develop a sense of self-awareness. ” I am exactly the kind of fake-woke SJW that people like C.K., Dave Chappelle and most recently Joker director Todd Phillips have been railing against,” writes Radheyan Simonpillai.
You can read the entire article here, but Simonpillai sums up his expectations and disappointment nicely in one sentence, “The comic performed his embarrassment right off the top without actually being apologetic about the sexual misconduct.”
Simply put, C.K. wasn’t sorry enough.
But here’s the thing. He shouldn’t be, because he’ll never be sorry enough. No matter how much he could apologize, it would never be enough for everybody.
And that’s reason enough to not do so. C.K.’s base, the people who will buy tickets and spend money on a future special, have already forgiven him. He’s apologized, and it’s time to move on.