Just less than a week before Pride Month kicks off and Netflix once again is in hot water over jokes mocking trans people. Ricky Gervais released his Netflix comedy special “SuperNature” on May 24 and within the first five minutes, Gervais took aim at trans women.
“Oh, women!,” Gervais said in the special. “Not all women, I mean the old-fashioned ones. The old-fashioned women, the ones with wombs. Those fucking dinosaurs. I love the new women. They’re great, aren’t they? The new ones we’ve been seeing lately. The ones with beards and cocks. They’re as good as gold, I love them. And now the old-fashioned ones say, ‘Oh, they want to use our toilets.’ ‘Why shouldn’t they use your toilets?’ ‘For ladies!’ ‘They are ladies — look at their pronouns! What about this person isn’t a lady?’ ‘Well, his penis.’ ‘Her penis, you fucking bigot!’ ‘What if he rapes me?’ ‘What if she rapes you, you fucking TERF whore?'”
To note, “TERF” stands for “Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist,” and the term is used to describe feminists who separate the rights of trans women from women’s rights in their advocacy.
Gervais went on to revisit Kevin Hart’s 2018 scandal when past homophobic tweets were uncovered. Hart removed himself from hosting the Academy Awards after the media storm.
“You can’t predict what will be offensive in the future,” Gervais said. “You don’t know who the dominant mob will be. Like, the worst thing you can say today, get you canceled on Twitter, death threats, the worst thing you can say today is, ‘Women don’t have penises,’ right? Now, no one saw that coming. You won’t find a 10-year-old tweet saying ‘women don’t have penises.’ You know why? We didn’t think we fucking had to!”
At the end of the special, Gervais issued a disclaimer that his comments on the trans community were solely for shock value: “Full disclosure: In real life of course I support trans rights,” Gervais explained. “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.”
Gervais then added, “But meet me halfway, ladies. Lose the cock. That’s all I’m saying.”
Fans have since shared backlash on social media, with viewers proclaiming they are canceling their Netflix memberships after the special aired, using the hashtag #TransRightsAreHumanRights.
“Ricky Gervais has a new stand-up show out on Netflix today,” a trans woman tweeted. “5 minutes in and he’s making jokes about trans women attacking & raping people in public bathrooms. To him we exist only as a punchline, a threat, something less than human.”
Another wrote, “If you’re a comedian and you support trans people it’s your responsibility to be speaking out against Dave Chapelle and the new Ricky Gervais special. At this point you can’t call yourself an ally if you’re not publicly taking a stand against it. It’s the bare minimum.”
In October 2021, viewers protested Netflix over comedian Dave Chapelle’s standup special “The Closer” after leaked Netflix employee communication showed that the streamer suspended trans employees who criticized the release of Chapelle’s standup.
In honour of Ricky Gervais and his 2-4-1 rant on trans people and cancel culture, I am in fact, cancelling. Thanks @netflix #TransRightsAreHumanRights pic.twitter.com/fuW0d169rg
— Steck (@steckbro) May 24, 2022
Ricky Gervais has a new stand up show out on Netflix today.
5 minutes in and he’s making jokes about trans women attacking & raping people in public bathrooms. To him we exist only as a punchline, a threat, something less than human.
— Esme (@discount_Ripley) May 24, 2022