*Bill Maher addressed the Dave Chappelle controversy over his new Netflix special “The Closer.”
Maher reacted to the backlash over Chappelle’s new stand-up show during Friday’s episode of HBO’s “Real Time With Bill Maher.” The host defended the comedian, telling all the critics to chill out.
“What the f*ck was that reaction?” Maher asked in his opening monologue. “Everyone needs to Netflix and chill the fuck out on this one.”
“Really? Dave’s special is offensive but not the show where the Koreans murder each other for money?” Maher continued, referring to Netflix’s popular “Squid Game” series. “I think people jump to conclusions, people haven’t seen it. Just because people call Dave ‘transphobic’ doesn’t mean that he is. Also, Larry? Not a real cable guy.”
Maher went on to note that “We can’t be afraid to speak in America.”
“Now, I’m Team Dave, but that doesn’t mean I’m anti-trans,” Maher explained. “We can have two thoughts in our head at the same time. Am I right about that?”
“I’m Team Dave, but that doesn’t mean I’m anti-trans. We can have two thoughts in our head at the same time.”
— Real Time with Bill Maher (@RealTimers) October 23, 2021
Fellow comedian Jon Stewart has also offered his support to Chappelle after the comic was harassed by male-to-female transgenders over jokes about them in “The Closer.”
“He’s one of my favorite people on the planet …” Stewart told TMZ. “I know his intention is never hurtful. Like, he’s just not that type of person.”
Damon Wayans appears to have nothing but praise for Chappelle’s new Netflix special, telling TMZ that Dave “freed the slaves” — referring to comics who are too afraid to touch on some of the topics that Chappelle tackles in “The Closer.”
Wayans also called Chappelle the van Gogh of comedy.
We previously reported that Ted Sarandos, co-CEO at Netflix, addressed the criticism in a company memo sent to staffers earlier this month, Sarandos said the Chappelle’s special isn’t “designed to incite hate or violence” and noted that “artistic freedom” is measured differently in stand-up comedy.