I really like Louis CK. He’s a comedian, and he’s mostly not made of complete fuckery! He has, of course, done fucked things, but far less so than most comedians. (And it turns out that his Tweet in praise of Daniel Tosh was not about Tosh’s rape ‘joke’*, but about how much he had laughed at Tosh.0. I am still skeptical of someone who finds Tosh.0 funny! But such is life.)
Anyway! Today I am appreciating two things about Louis CK. First, this hilarious Tonight Show interview:
[Transcript: “Well, it’s a lot of pressure. We put it on ourselves. Heterosexual men worry that we’ll be misidentified as gay. Like, we’re the only group that cares that you know what we are. Like, there’s no women that are scared someone will think they’re a lesbian, I never heard that. And there’s no gay guys that are like ‘oooh, they’ll think I’m straight’– you never hear that. But we worry about it, and so it’s limiting. It’s like, there’s things we can’t do that might be nice, because we worried folks might think– like, I can’t throw the word ‘wonderful’ around. There’s not really an effective heterosexual version of ‘oh, man, that’s wonderful, oh, dude, that’s wonderful, that strip club was wonderful.’ I can’t tell my straight friend, I can’t say to him ‘I miss youuuuuuuu,’ and you know if you miss someone that’s how you say it, ‘I miss youuuuuuu,’ like sloping down. I gotta say, yeah, man, I miss you, man, derr, males.'” Jay Leno interjects: “And you have to stick to primary colors like green and blue. You can’t go taupe.” Louis: “Right. You can’t do this [jazzhands]. And if I go see my friend, and he’s a big guy, on the couch, like this [Louis imitates guy stretched out on couch] I can’t snuggle in here.” I’m just saying, that might be nice.” And then they talk about outfits and shit. That bit’s boring.]
So yeah! A hilarious deconstruction of the way homophobia is used to gender-police straight men.
TW for rape here on out.
The second thing Louis CK has done recently that I thought was awesome was including a female-on-male rape scene in Louie, his TV show. One character, Laurie, attempts to shame Louie into having sex with her and then, when he continues to refuse, physically assaults him to get him to comply. Admittedly, having a female-on-male rape scene in a sitcom is pretty nasty, and there are a lot of people laughing at it because ahahahahahahaha it’s so absurd that a woman would rape a man. But on the other hand he managed to get a lot of people talking about the reality of male rape survivors and female rapists, which is something I think we could use a lot more of. If it raises awareness for only one person, it’s a good thing.
And, of course, it lets us see who the assholes are. Hint: if your reaction to a character being date-raped on TV is “I hope the rapist character gets her own sitcom, or at least a romantic arc!” you have failed at decent human.
If Laurie were a man, and Louie were a woman, this would be understood as rape.
Yes. That means it’s rape. If someone is having sex they didn’t consent to, it’s rape. Men do not magically consent to sex that they have been literally physically threatened to have on account of manbrainz. They are not in a default state of consent to sex. Fuck off.
*New rule: to qualify as a rape joke it must be remotely funny.