TV | May 24, 2022 12:50 pm

Ricky Gervais Has Some Pretty Vile Things to Say About Trans People in His New Special

The comedian's new special is full of transphobic jokes

Ricky Gervais speaks onstage during the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 5, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California.
Ricky Gervais speaks onstage during the 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 5, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California.
2020 NBCUniversal Media, LLC via

Less than a week after Dave Chappelle drew controversy for making transphobic jokes while opening for John Mulaney in Ohio, another performer who fancies himself some sort of deep-thinking rebel is spewing more hateful nonsense about trans people under the guise of comedy. As Variety reports, Ricky Gervais’s new standup special SuperNature has only been on Netflix — the same streaming service, you’ll remember, that also released Chappelle’s transphobic special — for several hours, but it’s already sparked backlash over its transphobic jokes.

“Oh, women!” Gervais says just four minutes into the set. “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?’”

Gervais also references Kevin Hart losing his Oscar hosting gig after old homophobic tweets of his surfaced — something that happened all the way back in 2018 but is apparently still some sort of sign of “cancel culture” running amok to the British comedian, despite the fact that Hart’s career has bounced back completely.

“You can’t predict what will be offensive in the future,” Gervais says. “You don’t know who the dominant mob will be. Like, the worst thing you can say today, get you cancelled 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 tries to walk back his trans jokes — sort of.

“Full disclosure: In real life of course I support trans rights,” he says. “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 cock. That’s all I’m saying.”

Gervais no doubt thinks he’s being edgy and challenging and we’re all just too dumb to wrap our little woke minds around his biting wit. But jokes about trans people’s genitalia aren’t new or challenging at all; they’re just lazy humor that’s been around for decades. Grabbing at low-hanging fruit is the opposite of edgy — you’re not pushing the culture forward by reverting to tired hate speech that’s old as dirt.