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There's More to Gender Critical Comedy than Dave Chappelle

From South Park to folk parody songs, these comedians have braved the cancel mob to address gender identity

There's More to Gender Critical Comedy than Dave Chappelle
Left to right: Mary Bourke, Mr. Menno, Jarvis Dupont

Gender identity ideology is ripe for parody and satire. We have fetishistic men wearing bad wigs and clown makeup barging their way into women’s spaces because they “feel” like women and demanding to be called she/her (“It’s MA’AM!”).

We have legions of girls and women identifying out of womanhood because they just don’t vibe with the whole “misogynistic treatment of women” thing and have decided to opt out. (How convenient!) And then there’s the nonbinary trend which sounds like something you would come up with when you were stoned out of your mind. (“I’m not a man…or a woman…I am neither…and yet I’m both at the same time…” “Far out, man…uh, I mean woman…uh, person.”)

This entire movement, along with wokeness in general, is begging to be ripped into by comedians—so where the hell are they?

If they’re on television, chances are they’ve become mouthpieces for the TRAs. John Oliver had an entire segment devoted to trans issues on his show “Last Week Tonight” and is now a woke shill. Eddie Izzard, a male comedian who made his name by frequently cross-dressing on stage, recently came out as a “transgender woman” and demanded he be referred to with she/her pronouns. Female comedians have also paid lip service to trans ideology—Samantha Bee frequently spouts trans talking points on her show Full Frontal with Samantha Bee and Sarah Silverman declared her own support for trans “girls” being able to play on the sports team with which they identify. Also, the writers over at Saturday Night Live reveled in taking potshots at J.K. Rowling after she published her famous essay.

Like the rest of the entertainment business, comedy has gone Woke and there is little room for deviation from the list of Fools-Guild-Approved Jokes that comics are allowed to tell. But there are a few prominent comedians who are willing to risk the wrath of the mob for the sake of comedy--and the truth.

The most recent and “controversial” case is Dave Chappelle. In his new Netflix special The Closer, Chappelle expressed gender-critical views, noting the "cancelling" of J.K. Rowling and declaring himself on “Team TERF.” He also took cautious aim at Caitlyn Jenner, noting how “she” only identified as a woman for a short time before being declared Woman of the Year. While Chappelle is no stranger to courting controversy in his stand-up, frequently addressing issues such as race and police brutality, his routine on the trans movement is hardly eviscerating. Chappelle treads carefully, calmly stating that ‘gender is real’ and reminding the audience that every single person on earth passed through the legs of a woman and "that is a fact." Additionally, Chappelle still uses Jenner’s preferred pronouns of "she" even when making a joke about him, so the ridiculousness of a man being declared "Woman of the Year" is undercut by political correctness.

Even with this kid-glove handling by Chappelle, TRAs, demonstrating once again that they have zero sense of humor, have been in an uproar all over social media. On Oct 20, transgender employees at Netflix organized a walkout in protest over Chappelle’s remarks and the streaming service’s refusal to pull the special.

Despite TRA tantrums, a few other comedians have carefully put forward GC views. Seth MacFarlane had a clip on a 2019 episode of his animated show Family Guy that indicated that when a man declares himself transgender, it allows him to do whatever he wants.

Bill Maher often derides “wokes” on his show Real Time with Bill Maher and seems primed to come out on “Team TERF” any day now. Also, in what has become a widely-shared clip of South Park among the GC community, Trey Parker and Matt Stone showed the absurdity of a man competing in a woman’s sports competition with pitch-perfect satire.

But the real comedy gold lies in the world of gender critical song parodies, with several musicians on Youtube leading the charge.

Debuting with his song Boys Will Be Girls in 2020, Francis Aaron is a musician writing satirical rap songs that takes pointed aim at the absurdity of the TRA movement and wokeness in general. His follow-up Problematic outlined the cult-like mentality of the woke movement and his latest song Clownfish is a brilliant takedown of the medical and pharmaceutical industries pushing drugs and surgeries on people in the trans cult.

While his six-to-eight minute long songs may not be featured on the radio anytime soon, Aaron still delivers sharp GC-influenced satire in the form of sick beats and catchy rhymes. ("It’s now been declared a diabolical act/ To state what is a biological fact.") It can be months between uploads on Aaron’s youtube channel but his well-produced raps are always worth the wait.

Another YouTuber poking fun at the TRA movement in the form of song parodies is Mr. Menno. Like a GC Randy Rainbow, Menno takes his inspiration from showtunes, delivering song parodies to the recognizable tune of famous musicals. His Gender Pronouns Song is a catchy reimagining of “Do Re Mi” from The Sound of Music (“She, a guy who thinks he’s a girl/He, the other way around”) and the Sam Smith Non Binary Song is a pulls-no-punches parody of “Look at Me, I’m Sandra Dee” from Grease. With his tongue firmly in his cheek throughout all of his song parodies, Mr. Menno is clearly having fun mocking the gender madness and offers radfems and gender criticals some much-needed laughs.

One of the few women putting out GC song parodies on YouTube is Ali Bee. In what can only be described as “GC folk comedy” (a genre that needs to be much bigger), Bee’s channel is filled with an entire album’s worth of songs, with titles ranging from Never Smile at an Autogynephile and You’re A Man to Imagine There’s No Gender and the Wokey Blokey Hokey Cokey. Unlike Francis Aaron and Mr. Menno, Bee’s channel is bare-bones, just her with her guitar, sitting in her room and singing to the camera. Her channel may be small (851 subscribers at the time of writing) but Bee’s clever lyrics and fearless attitude make her a joy to watch.

Outside of song parodies, GC comedy remains elusive for now. The threat of cancellation still looms large for most comedians when you consider that Lisa Graves, who ran the parody Twitter account of "transwoman" Jarvis Dupont, was unceremoniously banned from the site last year. (Thankfully you can still find her hilarious satirical articles on the Spectator website.) If a parody Twitter account can be disappeared by our tech overlords, it’s no wonder that most prominent stand-up comedians refuse to go near the trans issue.

One of the only stand-up comedians to work gender critical ideas into her routine is Irish comedian Mary Bourke. Bourke performed at Comedy Unleashed, a program that declares itself "The Home of Freethinking Comedy" and dedicates itself to ethos of free speech and anti-censorship. In her routine, in between jokes about masturbation and her husband having a stroke, Bourke comments on the erasure of the word "woman" and being called a TERF. Her reply? Calling TRA’s SMURF’s - Sexist Misogynists Undermining Real Feminism because, as she states "we can all make up our own insult words." While Bourke may not have the name recognition of Chappelle or MacFarlane, it is refreshing to see a female comedian speak out on this issue.

Here’s my prediction: in ten or twenty years, once this whole madness is over, there will be an explosion of GC comedy. Comedians will be yukking it up onstage with routines about how everyone in the world went collectively insane and people actually said the phrases "trans women are women" and "nonbinary identities are valid" with a straight face. There will probably be entire sitcoms dedicated to making fun of this era we’re living in, just like MASH found laughs while being set in a war zone. But until then, we have to look for GC comedy in the unlikely places—radfem comment sections, memes swapped in private conversations, or just laughing about the whole thing to yourself.

It may seem trivial but one of the most crucial things we can do in this culture war is to be able to laugh at how ridiculous it all is. Because we all know that a man’s greatest fear is having women laugh at him.

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