Jerry Seinfeld said in a recent interview that audiences will be the ones to decide the future of Louis CK comedy career, which the disgraced stand-up is trying to revive a year after he admitted to allegations of exposing himself to female employees and other comedians without their consent. Seinfeld’s not wrong, especially now that audiences are now being given the opportunity to decide whether or not they want to see CK perform.
As The New York Times reports, CK’s name was, for the first time since he reemerged in August, placed on the bill of the Comedy Cellar, where he’s previously performed a number of surprise sets. The Times reports that the billing drew protestors, one of whom brandished a sign reading, “When you support Louis CK, you tell women your laughter is more important than their sexual assaults and loss of their careers.”
“Frankly, I was furious,” protestor Jennifer Boudinot told the Times. “Every female comedian he has harmed deserves a place on the Comedy Cellar stage one hundred times before he should be allowed back on the stage.”
“I need to make jokes because I need an income,” Louis C.K. reportedly told the crowd, echoing previous comments he’s made about losing $35 million “in an hour” due to his behavior. “They tell you that when you get in trouble you find out who your real friends are,” he added in another reference to the controversy. “It’s black people, it turns out. They’ll stick by you.”
A photo of the bill shows that comics like Michelle Wolf, Kevin Brennan, Emmy Blotnick, and Godfrey were booked on the same shows as CK, who performed sets during the club’s 9:30 and 11:30 p.m. shows. The Times reports that the majority of the audience had no issue with his presence, noting only “a handful filtered out.”
As such, it’s very like that Comedy Cellar owner Noam Dworman, who’s expressed support for CK in the past, will keep booking the comedian. And, now that he’s doing so publicly, the door is open for other clubs to start doing the same.