Is this why Netflix took that public stand against Cancel Culture?
The streamer knew it had a Ricky Gervais comedy special in the works, and that material might make the imbroglio over Dave Chappelle’s trans content look mild in comparison.
Gervais’s “SuperNature,” out May 24, dives directly into trans humor within the first five minutes. It starts with some faux attacks on female comics, for ironic effect before going where even Chappelle didn’t dare with his 2021 Netflix comedy special, “The Closer.”
“Women … not all women, I mean the old fashioned women, the ones with wombs,” those f***ing dinosaurs,” he said of those who might be upset at a bit involving a dead child.
“I love the new women, they’re great … the ones with beards and [penises].”
The “dinosaur” women are upset that the new model want to use their bathrooms, he said, as if they weren’t authentically female.
“They are ladies! Look at their pronouns,” he cracked.
Gervais has been a free speech warrior for some time, slamming Cancel Culture before it was cool. Both he and Netflix will need solid spines to endure the attacks to follow.
His pretend conversations dig even deeper into material sure to be referenced in the days to come.
“What about this person isn’t a lady?” he asked as part of a pretend conversation.
“Well, his penis.
“Her penis, you [bleeping] bigot.”
“What if he rapes me?”
“What is she rapes you, you f***ing TERF whore!”
Gervais then shreds “woke comedy,” as if he hasn’t triggered all the usual suspects enough as is.
“I tried to watch a little bit of it, and I decided I’d rather watch Louis CK masturbate,” he said.
“SuperNature” is a full-on assault on woke culture, something he’s done in fits and starts but never with this ferocity … and humor.
And yes, “SuperNature” is aggressively funny, thoughtful and calculated. Of course, Gervais lays into faith, a favorite target, but in a way that’s less harsh than, say, Bill Maher, on the subject.
A long segment on cats gives way to a swipe at Muslim patriarchy – more forbidden terrain. Gervais has two modes – a first-class comic, toothless but on target – and the satirist who draws blood with every third syllable.
“Coronavirus couldn’t hold a candle to AIDS,” for example, on a cataclysmic scale. Later, he shows the audience a baby photo of Hitler, fawning over the lad’s cute mug. What he says next is likely too much for even his most ardent fans.
That’s Ricky Gervais in a nutshell. He’s trying to be outrageous, and in the process find the humanity within those dark crevices.
“Netflix already bought this. F*** ’em,” he says at one point.
Near the show’s end Gervais does the obligatory attempt at fence mending on the trans front.
“Full disclosure: In real life of course I support trans rights. I support all human rights, and trans rights are human rights. Live your best life. Use your preferred pronouns. Be the gender that you feel you are. But meet me halfway, ladies. Lose the [male genitals]. That’s all I’m saying.”
Chappelle did Gervais one better with “The Closer,” telling a beautiful story of his connection with a trans comic. That didn’t save Chappelle from the Cancel Culture attacks.
Gervais’ plea will similarly fail.
Gervais recently vowed to get canceled with his current stand-up tour hook. He may just get his best chance at just that with “SuperNature.”