The latest comeback nobody asked for is that of comedian Louis C.K., who is quietly rolling out tour dates without a social media presence after being publicly accused of masturbating in front of female writers and comics.
In an email sent to fans, C.K. announced the details of a 14-city international tour, which will kick off on Nov. 2 in Richmond, Va., and includes stops in New Orleans, Tel Aviv, Rome, and Royal Oak — where the disgraced comedian will show his face on Dec. 18 and 19 at the Royal Oak Music Theatre. (The dates do not appear on the ROMT site.)
Per LouisCK.com, he writes that the stand-up will consist of “jokes, stories, observations, lies, and non-lies.” He signs off with: “See you all (or some of you anyway) on the road.”
Public allegations of C.K.'s harassment go as far back as 2012 when Gawker ran a story titled, “Which beloved comedian likes to force female comics to watch him jerk off?” though his rumored reputation for nonconsensual masturbation was known for years prior to the Gawker story, which does not name C.K. directly.
It wasn't until The New York Times ran a story in November 2017 that brought five women in the comedy world and their personal accounts of alleged sexual harassment by C.K to light.
Shortly after the allegations, Louis C.K. issued an almost-apology, in which he admitted to masturbating in front of the women who came forward, adding, “I never showed a woman my dick without asking first” and expressed remorse for having power over women who admired him. The apology followed news that C.K.'s film, I Love You, Daddy had been scrapped, as was a forthcoming Netflix special and a TBS animated series titled The Cops. FX, home to two of C.K.'s series, also severed ties with C.K. — though FX CEO John Landgraf later said that he “misses” the show and would consider bringing it back if society can entertain “second chances.” HBO pulled all of his content from its streaming services. His publicist, agency, and management company also dropped him.
Last year, Louis C.K. addressed his situation during a run of sets in New York City, claiming he's been to “hell and back” and as a result of the allegations, “lost $35 million in an hour.” He also said that it had been a “weird year.”
If sexual harassment claims aren't enough to get you filing into the Royal Oak Music Theatre for his back-to-back sets just before the holidays, maybe some hateful comments about gender-neutral teens or jokes in which Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting survivors and advocates are the punchlines will seal the deal.
Last December, leaked audio from one of C.K.'s stand-up sets surfaced, in which he can be heard mocking gender neutral teens and their preferred pronouns, as well as calling Parkland survivors uninteresting.
“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?” he said. “You didn't get shot, you pushed some fat kid in the way and now I have to listen to you talking?”
He goes on to say that they shouldn't be spending their time advocating for gun reform and should focus on more important things: “finger fucking each other and doing jello shots.”
Tickets ($39.50+) are on sale now at AXS.com.
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual assault or harassment, support is available by calling the National Sexual Assualt Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 or by visiting rainn.org.
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