Ricky Gervais Is Transphobic in New Netflix Special

Ricky Gervais in Ricky Gervais: Humanity. Courtesy of Netflix.

To the surprise of absolutely no one, stand-up comedian Ricky Gervais is at it again by getting transphobic in his new Netflix special.

The new Gervais special, SuperNature, just launched on the streaming service. Perhaps what is surprising is how we rarely heard a word of Gervais getting transphobic during comedy shows. These specials aren’t just taped for Netflix but they come after fine-tuning the show during the comedy tour. There are no shortage of reports about the new special or viewers condemning The Office creator. When it comes to Gervais, we’ve come to expect this by now. What truly makes his graphic set even worse is the point in the special when he says he supports transgender rights. No, Ricky, you don’t. If Ricky Gervais were a true ally to the transgender community, he would not be punching down at our expense. He would not reduce us to our genitals as he does within the first few minutes.

Gervais starts his transphobic routine four minutes in. It gets worse from there. A few minutes later, he is at it again when discussing Kevin Hart and the Oscar controversy. Even when he talks about supporting trans rights and that trans rights are human rights, he still finds a way to make it transphobic. Gervais would do himself a big favor by not reducing trans people to genitals. It is infuriating and it needs to stop!

Transgender people are more than just our genitals. When you decide to make gender identity about genitals, you’re doing it wrong. Not everybody is a rich elitist like Caitlyn Jenner and can afford surgery without crowdfunding. Oh yeah, please stop making her the face of the trans community when she’s just the typical right-wing bigot speaking out against trans rights.

I will not be watching this special nor would I recommend you sit through any transphobic routine. In fact, people are already posting screenshots of canceling their Netflix subscription as a result of Netflix platforming more transphobia. I mean, think about it, Ricky Gervais could target anything or anyone that is wrong with the world right now. He could have targeted Elon Musk’s stupid decision to acquire Twitter. But instead, he targets the transgender community and is going to get trans people killed. This is not comedy. It is hate speech. Hate speech that, again, Ted Sarandos has no problem with because it keeps coming to Netflix. Listen, I value my relationship with Netflix publicists but Sarandos needs to realize that transphobia is not funny. Never has been nor will it ever be.

Acquiring Disclosure isn’t enough for Netflix. What Netflix needs to do is uplift transgender comedians and start giving trans comedians a platform for comedy specials. Why should anti-trans comedians like Dave Chappelle and Ricky Gervais have all the fun? Why can’t Netflix give Patti Harrison a comedy special? No wonder Netflix is losing subscribers–blame Netflix executive Ted Sarandos excusing hate speech for comedy.

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Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.