Mr. Macdonald, a “Saturday Night Live” alumnus, touted the special on Twitter amid Mr. Chappelle facing scrutiny following its release last month over jokes panned by critics as offensive and insensitive.
“If any of you wish to be a comedian, study ‘Sticks and Stones’, a comedy special from The Peerless One. If you don’t consider Chappelle funny, you are wrong. If you are a comedian who does not see that he is the best we have, quit,” Mr. Macdonaldtweeted.
Released by Netflix on Aug. 26, “Sticks and Stones” has caused a considerable amount of blowback in the weeks since for Mr. Chappelle, 46, who has come under fire from critics for telling jokes in the special mocking transgender people, Asians and sexual assault victims, among others. A review published in Vice said the comedian’s “misogyny and transphobia” made the special worth skipping, while another in Vanity Fair called it “stale work.”
“Ultimately I just think it’s someone who has been rich for a long time now and no longer has that many interesting things to say, because they’re not really living in the same world you or I are living in, at this point,” comedian Joel Kim Booster told WNYC’s “All of It” program last week.
“I think Chappelle used to have really interesting and prescient things to say about power structures and things like that, and I just don’t think he’s interested in dismantling that anymore. At least not from an interesting place, or at least not from beyond his own point of view — which is his right as a comic, I guess, but it felt a little bit, I don’t know, old, when I watched it,” said Mr. Booster.
Mr. Chappelle signed a deal with Netflix in 2016 to film a series of special for the streaming-service, with multiple outlets previously reporting that he would be paid $60 million for three exclusives. The first two were released in March 2017.
Mr. Macdonald, 59, worked for five seasons on “SNL,” including three spent anchoring the program’s Weekend Update segment, prior to being fired in 1998. He co-starred in a movie with Mr. Chappelle, “Screwed,” released in 2000.
His tweet supportive of Mr. Chappelle was retweeted more than 7,000 times within 20 hours of being posted.
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