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GLAAD blasts Gervais’s ‘dangerous’ Netflix special: ‘Anti-trans rants masquerading as jokes’

The Hill logo The Hill 5/24/2022 Monique Beals
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GLAAD, an organization that supports the rights of LGBTQ people, issued a sharp criticism of Ricky Gervais’s new Netflix special, “SuperNature.”

“We watched the Ricky Gervais ‘comedy’ special on Netflix so you don’t have to,” GLAAD’s statement began. “It’s full of graphic, dangerous, anti-trans rants masquerading as jokes.”

The organization added that the show “spouts anti-gay rhetoric & spreads inaccurate information about HIV.” 

“Attention Ricky and Netflix: people living with HIV today, when on effective treatment, lead long and healthy lives and cannot transmit HIV to others,” the group also said.

As part of the show, the 60-year-old Gervais makes expletive-laced jokes at the expense of transgender people regarding pronoun choices and gender-neutral restrooms. 

“I love the new women. They’re great, aren’t they? The new ones we’ve been seeing lately,” he said during the special, according to People

“The ones with beards and c—-. 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?” he also said, adding at the end of the special that he supports trans rights “in real life.”

“While Netflix is home to some groundbreaking LGBTQ shows, it refuses to enforce its own policy in comedy,” GLAAD’s Tuesday statement said, referencing a Netflix policy that prohibits content “designed to incite hate or violence.” 

“The LGBTQ community and our allies have made it very clear that so-called comedians who spew hate in place of humor, and the media companies who give them a platform, will be held accountable,” it added.

The Hill has reached out to Netflix for comment. 

Last year, the streaming company was criticized for a special featuring Dave Chappelle that also contained what GLAAD considered to be transphobic content. 

“Dave Chappelle’s brand has become synonymous with ridiculing trans people and other marginalized communities,” GLAAD said about the special at the time.

“Negative reviews and viewers loudly condemning his latest special is a message to the industry that audiences don’t support platforming anti-LGBTQ diatribes. We agree,” the group added.

At the time of that backlash, Netflix said, “We value our trans colleagues and allies, and understand the deep hurt that’s been caused. We respect the decision of any employee who chooses to walk out, and recognize we have much more work to do both within Netflix and in our content,” according to Axios.

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