For a company that often plays it safe in terms of content, Dave Chappelle’s recent comedy special The Closer has drawn a remarkable amount of controversy and attention following the comedian’s questionable statements against the LGBTQ+ community.
The story’s most recent developments have seen Chappelle post a video clip to Instagram where the comedian remains unapologetic about the special that includes transphobic material, angering many in the LGBTQ+ community among others. Speaking in the video, Chappelle noted, “I said what I said, and boy, I heard what you said. My God, how could I not? You said you want a safe working environment at Netflix. It seems like I’m the only one that can’t go to the office anymore”.
Continuing, Chappelle claimed that the whole situation had to do with “corporate interests” with the controversy being framed as “me versus that community”. “Do not blame the LGBTQ community for any of this. It’s about corporate interests, and what I can say, and what I cannot say. For the record, and I need you to know this, everyone I know from that community has been loving and supportive, so I don’t know what this nonsense is about,” Chappelle added.
The new statement from Chappelle stirs the ongoing issue for Netflix who recently fired an employee connected to The Closer over how the backlash is being handled. Having been released in early October, the special aims jokes at trans women, mocking genitalia among other subjects.
According to statements from the comedian in his Instagram video, “everyone I know from that community has been nothing but loving and supportive. So I don’t know what this nonsense is about”. Continuing, he adds that if Netflix employees want to meet with him, “First of all, you cannot come if you have not watched my special from beginning to end. You must come to a place of my choosing, at a time of my choosing. And thirdly, you must admit that Hannah Gadsby is not funny”.