Louis C.K. was accused of exposing himself and masturbating in front of women against their will and in the workplace, after being dogged for years with rumors. He’d categorically denied them, until an exposé from the New York Times named him in the wake of the #MeToo movement. At that point, C.K. admitted he’d done pretty much what he’d been accused of, and retreated with a half-hearted “apology.” If you don’t think it’s bad enough to flash your genitalia at women who haven’t explicitly asked for that experience, he also had his manager blacklist women who talked about it, essentially torpedoing their careers.
The comedian retreated from the public eye, before doing a surprise set in August. The decision to return to the stage met with mixed reviews. Some people reportedly stood and applauded him when he came on, others were very uncomfortable—one thing was clear. C.K. stills like showing himself off without people’s consent. According to Page Six, C.K. is back at it again, and did a set on Sunday at the Comedy Cellar. Page Six reported that audience members were unhappy about his appearance, but a recording posted by The Hollywood Reporter makes it sound like folks were happy to see him:
Listen to the reception Louis C.K. received when he returned to New York’s Comedy Cellar for another surprise set late Sunday night: pic.twitter.com/7uBw846xIX
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) October 1, 2018
This is depressing for a lot of people, but especially women who have been dealing all week with the imminent Supreme Court appointment of Brett Kavanaugh, who has been accused of sexual assault. The very public inquiry into Kavanaugh’s past transgressions have been extremely difficult to witness, especially because many people both believe his accuser Dr. Christine Ford and believe he will be appointed anyway. Like, Louis….you’re a comic. Read the room.
Louis CK did another surprise drop-in set last night in NYC. Guess he hasn’t been watching the Kavanaugh hearings during his “time out”
— Alli Breen (@allibreen) October 1, 2018
women: [spend the month taking down a sexist, assaulting Supreme Court nominee]
Louis CK: pic.twitter.com/xRnC6fGMWY
— bez (@Bez) October 2, 2018
It takes a particular kind of hubris for Louis CK to look at this week in American history and think that this is the time for his voice to be heard pic.twitter.com/iZtKPXorVP
— Hispanic Pixie Dream Girl (@mathewrodriguez) October 2, 2018
I keep thinking back to a month ago when I was recording an ep of The Comedy Cellar’s Live From America podcast and one of the comics said Louis CK would definitely be welcomed back by audiences and I quipped, “Yeah, because America hates women,” and everyone in the room groaned.
— Lux ?? Alptraum (@LuxAlptraum) September 28, 2018
The opinion of Twitter and the opinion of people who actually want to go see live comedy may be very much at odds. C.K. seems to be testing the waters to see if there’s the possibility of making a bigger comeback. Maybe there is. But I’d personally much rather see the women whose careers he ruined so he could wave his penis around get their chance to succeed.