Is Dave Chappelle and Netflix’s relationship coming to an end? While it may not be a nasty split-up, it certainly could be the case from what is being shared to promote the comedian’s latest, and perhaps final, stand-up special for the streaming service, The Closer, which debuted on the streaming service Oct. 5.
Variety (opens in new tab) first reported about Chappelle’s next stand-up special, quoting a Netflix press release that said, “this stand-up special completes a body of work which includes: The Age of Spin, Deep in the Heart of Texas, Equanimity, The Bird Revelation and Sticks & Stones.” The trailer for The Closer is definitely playing up that this is the culmination of something.
In addition to these six stand-up specials, Chappelle released a short-special with Netflix titled 8:46 in the summer of 2020 where he openly talked about the murder of George Floyd and the social issues that were going on at the time.
Chappelle’s relationship with Netflix has generated plenty of headlines. This includes some of the content of his specials, where Chappelle has taken heat for jokes about the transgender community, for which he has defended himself with the idea that comedians have a responsibility to speak recklessly and that while things may be mean, that’s not the reason he is saying them, but rather in an attempt to be funny (this is paraphrased from a quote in the trailer for The Closer). He also was involved in negotiations with Comedy Central and Netflix over licensing issues with Chappelle’s Show, which resulted in the variety series being removed from Netflix for a few months before reappearing in February 2021 (opens in new tab).
All of Chappelle’s previous five Netflix stand-up specials are available to watch on the streaming service right now, as long as you are, you know, signed up for Netflix. A Netflix subscription starts at $13.99 per month, with the ability to add features like 4K and more for an increased price.
Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Peaky Blinders, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Saturday Night Live, Only Murders in the Building and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd (opens in new tab).
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