Who’s Gonna Give Louis CK his Career Back? All of Us

Social Commentary

Who’s Gonna Give Louis CK his Career Back? All of Us

Illustration: Akshita Monga


n what turned out to be a surprise for zero women, Louis CK returned to stand-up comedy this week with a “surprise set” at New York’s famed Comedy Cellar for the first time since he admitted to nonconsensually masturbating in front of several women, almost 10 months ago. The comedian was reportedly met with resounding applause as he walked on to the stage and received a standing ovation after his 15-minute set ― one that comprised an uncomfortable “rape whistle” joke.

Two women who sat through his set told Vulture that “there seemed to be a divide between how men and women reacted to CK’s presence”. And to think that back in November, the chain of events that followed his admission actually had us believe that his career could be dented. At the time, his manager Dave Becky ended their professional relationship, the comedian lost his production deal with FX, Netflix, and HBO, and the release of I Love You Daddy, the film that he wrote, directed, and starred in, was cancelled. But less than a year since his hiatus, CK quietly forged his return under the aegis of a protective comedy club and a largely white male audience that had a man telling him that “it was good to have him back”.