Chelsea Handler is sick and tired of her white privilege.
The Netflix mainstay made her name on bawdy confessions, gossip and nuclear-powered self deprecation.
These days, she’s crediting the color of her skin for much of her success. And she can’t stop feeling guilty about it. That introspection fuels “Hello Privilege. It’s Me, Chelsea.”
The special’s title plays on her previous best-seller, “Are You There, Vodka? It’s me, Chelsea.” This time, the focus is on her ungainly white privilege, not her comic predilection for booze.
Critics, so far, haven’t been kind. The far-left Vice.com says the special proves Handler still doesn’t get it. The reviewer hints that Handler’s shtick is an attempt to stave off the Cancel Culture mob given her past “sins.”
In an alternate universe, Chelsea Handler could have been canceled a handful of times. It could have happened when she said three-year-old Pax Jolie-Pitt, who was born in Vietnam, would grow up to be a “horrible driver” and “amazing at nails.” She could have gotten in trouble for the way she hyper-sexualizes Black men, as she did when she called Rick Ross “Chocolate Thunder” and “Black Magic” while straddling him at the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards.
The Vice critic isn’t ready to forgive Handler’s problematic past..
[Specials like] Chelsea Does Racism and Hello, Privilege may be respectable first steps, but they aren’t enough to excuse Handler’s past and present behavior.
Audiences weren’t much nicer, giving the special an 11 percent “rotten” rating at RottenTomatoes.com.
Add podcast giant Dave Rubin and author Douglas Murray to the list of Handler’s critics. Rubin and Murray teed off on Handler’s special on the latest Rubin Report show.
Murray, the author of “The Madness of Crowds: Gender, Race, and Identity,” expanded on his book’s themes regarding woke culture.
“It is a highly demoralizing game,” Murray said, one with no healthy, agreed upon endgame. Rubin then brings up Handler, citing her white privilege special. The comedienne’s impulses, Rubin said, don’t add up.
“If she really wanted to apologize for her white privilege she might have given that [Netflix programming] slot to a black woman, say Monique, or some other black comic. She doesn’t really mean it,” Rubin said. “You don’t really mean to get out of the way. She means it like, ‘I’m gonna get mine, and I’m gonna make myself feel bad for it so you think I’m really, really great.'”
“Some very smart people, as she clearly is, have worked out how to behave in this era,” Murray added. The scholar compared it to men who game female-led protests, like the Women’s March, in order to woo fellow marchers.
“Some people, like the Chelsea Handler case, know that the safest way through this era … is to play the privilege game … I’m not interested in Chelsea Handler’s psychosis … what I’m interested in, and really, really worried about, is how young men and women are going to get through this era if they are all made to play this game because they can’t play this game, And they need to be helped out from this game, to be assisted out from of it. This has to stop. We cannot have this era go on, where people’s skin color, and sexuality, and gender is constantly made into this horrible zero sum gain where women are used against men, different races. We can’t have it.
“The people who play the game, like Chelsea Handler, at the top have an unbelievable advantage…. it’s in their favor for the time being, but millions of other lives are going to be wrecked in trying to understand it,” Murray said.