Comedy is subjective. Any review of any comedic content should always come with a detailed and transparent take on the author/reviewer’s bias.
I believe that. I think that way about every opinion piece and review of ALL content. We should be willing to add personal bias caveats to anything we offer an opinion on.
I LAUGHED watching people review Dave Chappelle and Ricky Gervais’s latest Netflix specials this week.
Dave released “The Dreamer” the same week Ricky released “Armageddon,” I thoroughly enjoyed both specials. I can separate my bias from art because we don’t all share the same values.
Gervais wrapped his special around differentiating between woke and radicalized woke. He talked about the dog meat trade in China, rape, and early hominid behavior, and the evolution of humanity about the end of the world. He also talked about cultural appropriation, mocking the extreme. It was offside, but my values allow offside humor because it’s art. It’s comedy. It’s speech used to make you think and entertain.
— Ricky Gervais (@rickygervais) December 25, 2023
Ricky Gervais: Armageddon (2023) pic.twitter.com/9tgQ1RTaFG
— Piper Fogle (@FoglePiper) December 28, 2023
Chappelle (aside from a few off-handed comments) didn’t do trans resentment content like some “reviews” suggest. He talked about the trans community and the extremes of it. He also mocked handicapped fans at his show, detailed his attack at the Hollywood Bowl, mocked Chris Rock getting slapped by Will Smith, told a titanic submersible joke that SLAYED, and talked about how his wife hates the fact he goes to strip joints by himself to hundreds of PAYING fans.
What the media wants you to believe vs. what actually happened during Dave Chappelle’s Dreamer special. pic.twitter.com/b24J6L8c83
— Mythinformed (@MythinformedMKE) December 31, 2023
Comedian Dave Chappelle explained the night of being attacked on stage at Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles.
(via: The Dreamer | Netflix) pic.twitter.com/FEftUKvq7q
— Tribe ERA Worldwide™ (@TribeERAWW) December 31, 2023
Dave Chappelle’s “The Dreamer” was released on Netflix today.
It’s Dave Chappelle so you already know it’s good. pic.twitter.com/nSOyVezCSR
— Ethan 𝕏 (@itsEFlyX) January 1, 2024
Comedy is subjective. Reviewing comedy shouldn’t be. Gaslighting people out of feeling good about what they like because you CHOOSE to take offense to what they want is a ridiculous thing only victims and snowflakes do. We choose to be hurt and offended based on our value system and what we perceive to be acceptable, and then we apply it to everyone else. Your values are based on your experiences, not mine, and thinking you can port your values in the form of shame onto someone who likes something you don’t are the thoughts of a victim too scared to experience life on life’s terms. So they fight like help to prevent other people from enjoying something they don’t. Or fight like help to force you to experience something you don’t want to.
There are some people out there who will try to make you out to be a terrible person for laughing at Dave’s trans jokes. But none of those people will talk about his black jokes. Those are fine. There are some people who’d like you to take issue with Ricky joking about how there are only two genders but laugh at the Chinese kid not being hungry enough to eat dogs.
Both will virtue signal about the parts they didn’t like while hiding the parts they did because it defeats the point of a solid virtue signal and comes from a tainted bias.
There are moments in both specials that made me uncomfortable for certain groups who might have watched “Dreamer” or “Armageddon,” but that’s not my problem. I CHOSE to watch both specials, knowing full well what I’d get. That cancels out my ability to selectively bith about the shit that didn’t align with my values. But I also learned a lot from both Chapelle and Gervais. They are philosopher Comedians who have battled to keep their ability to tell jokes to an audience that wants to hear them in a sea of right fighters who wish to prevent YOU from living YOUR values.
So watch the specials. Or don’t. But stop telling everyone else it’s bad for them because you just (selectively) don’t like some things you heard when you CHOSE TO WATCH IT.
Dean Blundell is a Canadian radio personality. Best known as a longtime morning host on CFNY-FM (The Edge) in Toronto, Ontario. In 2015 he was named the new morning host on sports radio station CJCL (Sportsnet 590 The Fan). Dean started his career in radio in 2001 and for nearly 20 years been entertaining the radio audience. Dean’s newest venture is the launch of his site and podcast which is gaining tremendous momentum across North America.