I’m no prude when it comes to comedy. If the comedian is smart enough and has good timing, then I think just about anything can be funny. I have heard Louis C.K. say some funny shit about gays and parents, and I have heard Sarah Silverman say funny things about the holocaust and Martin Luther King Jr. The topics themselves are not off-limits, but should be left to the professionals – people who understand irony and satire.
When I read about this TOSH dude and his “rape joke” troubles, I was immediately pissed off. First, because now women who get pissed are gonna get a bad rap. Like “oh, here come the feminists who can’t take a joke…” I CAN take a joke if the joke is funny and actually a joke.
Which brings me to the second thing – what he said wasn’t a joke, it was an invitation. For those of you even more out of the loop than me, here is what happened. TOSH was doing his act, and a lady heckled him. Later in his show he says, “Wouldn’t it be funny if that girl [referring to the audience member who “heckled” him about rape jokes not being funny earlier in his set] got raped by, like, five guys right now? Like right now?”
That was not only unfunny, but it was personal and pointed. And inciting. He was encouraging a gang rape all because he isn’t a clever enough comedian to think on his feet. His “joke” targeted victims and perpetuate male dominance as a way to shut women up. Not to mention it makes him a the comedic equivalent of an 8-year-old kid. His come back was something that you might see on The Maury Povich Show. Only people with base senses of humor, little brains or creativity need to resort to something like violence to make their point. He might as well have said, “Oh yeah lady? Well, you’re ugly.” or “If you don’t shut up, I’m gonna tell mom!”
If you are a comedian you need to be prepared for hecklers. That’s part of the job. If you tell rape jokes that aren’t funny, you had better be prepared for criticism. Maybe this Tosh douche needs to find a new line of work. He doesn’t know funny. Because, as Sarah Silverman said, “Obviously no woman ever asks to be raped… I think there are some women who are asking to be motor boated…”