The Year Elon Musk and Dave Chappelle Almost Killed Comedy

How quickly things can change in a year. Take Elon Musk’s recent appearance with Dave Chappelle, which garnered near-universal boos from a San Francisco audience that just a few months ago might have greeted the Silicon Valley superstar with gusto.

This week, Andy Levy from The New Abnormal is joined by fellow Daily Beast podcast host Matt Wilstein for a special crossover episode with The Last Laugh, which explores modern comedy and the people who make it.

“I think Chappelle and Elon Musk coming together at the end of the year really couldn’t be more perfect,” Wilstein said. “I mean, they are sort of the two figures of the year, if we’re talking about political comedy.”

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The reason: Both men have reached a level of success where they’re insulated from any criticism, no matter how mild, and there’s nothing that kills comedy more than a lack of self-awareness.

Take Chappelle’s recent SNL monologue about Kanye West—which Wilstein says managed to traffic in antisemitic tropes and still be somewhat funny at times, despite the bittersweet feelings over his right-wing turn and “punching down” engender.

“Chappelle hasn’t stopped being funny, it’s just that it feels like the groups he’s training his attention on, a lot of his humor focusing on trans people in particular, that stuff is just not funny in 2022, given the state of the world.”

Then, hosts Andy Levy and Danielle Moody discuss the beef brewing between far-right congresswomen Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and Lauren Boebert (R-CO).

The entire conflict seems to center around Kevin McCarthy battle to become the new Speaker of the House. MTG is staunchly in support of the bid and has been on a speaking tour of sorts to support her choice. Boebert, however, feels differently—and put her colleague and onetime friend on blast this past week for some of the more ridiculous beliefs she’s expressed in the past (Jewish space lasers, etc).

“If Lauren Boebert thinks you’re an idiot, wow, you are off the scale,” host Andy Levy says on this week’s episode. “Just unbelievable.”

Listen to The New Abnormal on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon and Stitcher.

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