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Comedian Louis C.K. continues to double down on his “I don’t care” stance, and in his latest stand-up show at the San Jose Improv Comedy Club on Wednesday, it couldn’t be more clear that he’s unconcerned with any backlash.
Despite his admission in November 2017 to masturbating in front of five different women without their consent — and all the subsequent backlash and damage to his career — C.K. kept on pushing during his San Jose show.
According to The Daily Beast, which sent a reporter to the show, C.K. started off with a masturbation joke.
“I like to jerk off, and I don’t like being alone,” the 51-year-old said unapologetically to laughter from the crowd.
C.K. has performed a smattering of stand-up shows over the past several months, and while initially, the backlash against him was swift and severe, over time it has dwindled. The comedian put on surprise shows in August, October and November at New York’s Comedy Cellar club, drawing both criticism and praise. Most of the shows have seen large audiences and plenty of laughter.
WATCH BELOW: The latest on Louis C.K.
C.K.’s previous actions resulted in the end of a production deal with FX Networks and the cancellation of his movie, I Love You, Daddy.
As the set went on, C.K., 51, acknowledged that it would most likely trigger pushback and controversy, but he didn’t seem to care.
“What are you going to do, take away my birthday?” he joked. “My life is over. I don’t give a s**t.”
It was more of the same on Wednesday night, as C.K. flippantly derided naysayers and defended his actions, reported The Daily Beast. He likened comedy to porn, saying the world needs it because it “keeps men from molesting their colleagues at work.”
“The whole point of comedy is to say things that you shouldn’t say,” he said. “That’s the entire point.”
The entertainment publication reports that the mood of the show notably changed midway through, when C.K. made a joke about the 9/11 attacks.
He didn’t stop there either; he went on to make jokes about “retarded” children, dead babies and Asian and black men’s genitalia — the latter jokes having drawn heavy criticism before.
It wasn’t all fans at the show, however. A small group of mostly female protesters gathered outside the venue as the audience queued in.
They chanted, “Louis C.K. has got to go!” and “Shame!” according to Fox News affiliate KTVU. The outlet reported that some attendees mocked the group, while most just acknowledged their presence.
One protester, Michelle Dauber — who’s a Stanford law professor — said that she remains unconvinced that C.K. is truly sorry for his actions.
“C.K. himself does not take what he did seriously,” she said. “He is sorry that he got caught, he is sorry that he lost money. He is not sorry for what he did. We are not protesting his comedy. We are protesting his actions.”
Others in the lineup heading into the show thought the protesting was excessive.
“We all make mistakes,” said attendee Eli Melo. “I think it’s ridiculous… can’t nobody say nothing anymore.”
The San Jose comedy club defended having C.K. perform in a statement to the San Francisco Chronicle.
“We see comedy as the final frontier and we don’t censor artists,” the statement read. “We want them to perform without scrutiny. We trust that our audiences can decide for themselves what their limits are. We understand that not everyone will agree with our decision and we respect their right to protest. We also respect Louis C.K.’s right to perform.”