Judd Apatow Calls Louis CK Parkland Routine ‘Hacky, Unfunny, Shallow’

“Louis CK is all fear and bitterness now. He can’t look inward,” director writes on Twitter

Louis CK Judd Apatow
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Judd Apatow criticized Louis C.K.’s recent stand-up set where he made jokes about Parkland shooting survivors and gender non- binary young people.

“This hacky, unfunny, shallow routine is just a symptom of how people are afraid to feel empathy,” Apatow said of the set in a tweet on Monday morning. “It’s much easier to laugh at our most vulnerable than to look at their pain directly & show them love and concern. Louis CK is all fear and bitterness now. He can’t look inward.”

In audio that comes a December stand-up performance, C.K. can be heard mocking the survivors of the Parkland school shooting and young people who identify as non-binary.

“#louisck has a leaked set, and it’s the definition of bad writing and punching down,” writer Emma Smith said on Twitter. “The plea for relevance really gives the whole 2 minutes a sour undertone – sorry, dude, but the red light means your time is officially up.

C.K., whose career was derailed as a result of sexual misconduct accusations that he admitted were true, said in 2017 that he would use his time away from the spotlight to “step back and take a long time to listen,” but his recent set being criticized for not making amends.

“Despite his vow, about a year ago, to ‘step back and take a long time to listen,’ seems like he views his (entirely self-inflicted) downfall as license to now behave however he wants,” New York Times writer Dave Itzkoff wrote on Twitter. “Telling moment in the bootleg Louis CK set is when, after a particularly crude bit, he jokingly tells the crowd, “What are you – going to take away my birthday? My life is over. I don’t give a s—.’”

Comedian Paul F. Tompkins satirized the routine as an example of a comic talking about how things were in the past.

“I’m saying, Come on, the global warming thing? How did the ice melt during the ice ages,” Tompkins wrote on Twitter. “Was the dinosaurs driving SUVs around back then?”

A journalist for Elle suggested that this type of comedy would be the only way that C.K. would be able to make a “comeback,” while a writer for The Daily Beast went further by suggesting that the routine panders to the alt-right.

“I wrote back in August that Louis CK’s only conceivable “comeback” was to become the kind of hacky, s—-y, “what is UP with GENDER PRONOUNS” comic that rapists can see as “their voice” and that his previous career was built on subverting,” Sady Doyle writes.

See some other reactions to the leaked audio below: