Just hours after the breaking news regarding sexual misconduct allegations against comedian Louis C.K. was made public, several comedians took the stage at the sold out Comedy Cellar in New York City. A few of them spoke about the allegations in their own way, making last minute adjustments to their sets in order to turn the story into a joke.
Gregg Rogell, who opened the show and was introduced with his Louie credit, said, “Were you guys expecting Louis to come up here and show you his dick? In Louis’ defense, he’s practicing safe sex, so leave him alone.”
Jim Norton, who also had a recurring role on Louie, came up next and dedicated his entire set to talking about sexual assault and harassment. Upon being introduced, he told William Stephens, owner of the club and the guy who played the bus driver in the first episode of Louie, “I told you to change my introduction tonight. It’s ‘Worked with Kevin Spacey!’” He later said, “What a weird time in show business. What a crazy, crazy time. You know, it’s so funny. I’m a perverted guy, but I’m different.”
While most of his set was about the general topic of sexual harassment in the entertainment industry, Norton talked about Louis C.K. toward the end, saying,
They said Louis jerked off in front of women. You know, it’s funny: Those rumors have been around for a long time and I’d never heard a name attached to it. And I honestly don’t know any of the people attached to it, so I don’t know if they’re credible or not, but again, if five people say it, it’s like you’ve gotta think about it at least. It just seems like … I dunno, was he scary when he did it? I don’t know what the energy was. I’m not saying it’s not scary, but I just can’t picture him being nude, being frightened of it. Like, just Chucky jerking off, chasing us.
However, not everyone on stage wanted to address the Louis C.K. situation. “It is what it is, man,” said Keith Robinson. “I’m gonna talk about something else then.” Michelle Wolf, Tiffany Haddish, and Mo Amer skipped the topic entirely.
The quote of the night might have to go to Judy Gold, who asked the crowd
Do you guys mind if I masturbate in front of you? Would that be a problem? I’m just asking! I’m just asking! At least I asked. Like you’re not all fucking thinking that. At least I’ve got it out of the fucking way, assholes.
Louis C.K.’s new film I Love You, Daddy was dropped from its release schedule following the allegations.