The stand up special has been criticised for comments the comedian made that activists deemed as transphobic and homophobic.
Netflix has courted controversy yet again, this time for Dave Chappelle’s new stand up special, The Closer. The comedian was subject to widespread criticism from LGBTQIA+ organisations and activists for transphobic and homophobic comments he made on the special.
Chapelle’s hour-long special included several quips targeting the community. From accusing them of ‘punching down’ on his people to ridiculing trans women, many of the jokes that made up the special followed a pattern of criticism against LGBTQ+ people. The former comment was made in reference to previous incidents where African-American artists such as DaBaby had been called out for their homophobic statements.
The comedian had also made the controversial statement “In our country, you can shoot and kill a n*****, but you better not hurt a gay person’s feelings,”.
Chapelle also made references to the backlash he had received earlier for his anti-trans rhetoric in his previous special Equanimity and Sticks and Stones.
He also jokingly offered support to Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who was also accused of transphobia for comments the author made calling himself ‘Team TERF’ (Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist).
American organisation GLAAD(Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation), an NGO which monitors defamatory content against the queer community in media, took to Twitter to express their disapproval, along with several other human rights organisations as well.
Dave Chappelle's brand has become synonymous with ridiculing trans people and other marginalized communities. Negative reviews and viewers loudly condemning his latest special is a message to the industry that audiences don't support platforming anti-LGBTQ diatribes. We agree. https://t.co/yOIyT54819— GLAAD (@glaad) October 6, 2021
Trans writer and producer Jaclyn Moore, who had worked on the series Dear White People at Netflix also criticised the platform for allowing the ‘dangerous’ content to air.
I love so many of the people I've worked with at Netflix. Brilliant people and executives who have been collaborative and fought for important art... But I've been thrown against walls because, "I'm not a 'real' woman." I've had beer bottles thrown at me. So, @Netflix, I'm done. https://t.co/2naqrzW0G2— Jaclyn Moore (@JaclynPMoore) October 7, 2021
Netflix has not commented on the issue yet.