‘Hacks’ Co-Lead Hannah Einbinder Zeroes In On Dave ChappelleNovember 16, 2022
Hannah Einbinder holds her own against Jean Smart in HBO Max’s Hacks to such a delicious degree. The way those two (rather insufferable on their own) characters circle each other is masterful and so f*cking funny. In real life, Hannah’s also terribly amusing on her own. She did a blazingly good Conan Needs A Friend podcast episode (here’s the Apple link) if you are so inclined. And she still dabbles in stand-up from time to time.
At the moment, however, Hannah’s not feeling very entertained by Dave Chappelle’s most recent SNL monologue, in which he once again courted controversy (months after those “I’m Team TERF” jokes in a Netflix special). Einbinder did find much of the SNL monologue to be very funny, but she didn’t appreciate what she called his “two truths and a lie” approach, which she believes is a “genius technique” (regarding his commentary on Kanye West’s blazing anti-Semitism) but still nonetheless not her thing. The Anti-Defamation League wrote that Chappelle’s jokes “not just normalize but popularize” anti-Semitism, and Hannah seems inclined to agree. As Deadline notes, Einbinder used her Instagram story to outline her issues with Chappelle’s monologue.
Near the end of her statement, Einbinder declared, “These men who pick on marginalized groups are establishment bullies reinforcing the status quo — not at all the job of a comedian.” Here’s more:
“No one who laughs at the solid jokes would be willing to admit that there was antisemitism in that monologue, because that admission would then qualify them as complicit. No one wants to feel like a bad person. The fact is: non Jews aren’t as keenly aware of antisemitic ideas, tropes, verbiage etc. Most people just missed these ideas all together, and only remember that they laughed. So when Jews say hey, there was antisemitism in there, folks go, ‘you’re too sensitive. Learn to take a joke.’ … The danger here is that Dave Chappelle, and every other male comedian who believes that their amplification of bigotry is just freedom of speech, are seen as tellers of hard truths, and thus anyone who criticizes them are seen as snowflakes.”
You can read Hannah’s full remarks here. As well, Jon Stewart has defended Chappelle while declaring, “I don’t believe that censorship and penalties are the way to end anti-Semitism or to gain understanding.” He then added, “I don’t believe in that. It’s the wrong way for us to approach it.”