The latest rumble on Twitter is the backlash against comedian Iliza Schlesinger's interview with Deadline Hollywood where she stated her opinion about women in comedy. To be honest, I probably would have never realized this Twitter war was even going on if it weren't for overhearing irate chatter among fellow comedians at a local comedy club last night. "Who is SHE to tell WOMEN they can't TALK ABOUT THEIR VAGINAS!!?" is what I heard from a vividly irate female comic standing nearby. Naturally, I was intrigued to find out what she was so upset about and that's when I got the scoop. Iliza done pissed off the feminists. Which, nowadays, has a seemingly worse backlash than calling someone the "N" word. But I digress...
So what exactly did she say that has so many female (and some male) comedians ready to lynch her? Well, not much. Or I should say, nothing much different than the things that a lot of industry people say about female comics. Make no mistake- I'm never down to diss another comedian and definitely not a female comedian (we all sistas *finger snap*) but I genuinely believe Iliza's comments are being wholly misunderstood and blown out of context. Let's explore this reasoning, shall we? Here's a snip of the article from Deadline Hollywood and her comments that have everyone's panties in a bunch (no pun intended):
Overall, the point that I got from reading this is that there's so much opportunity for comedic growth among women in comedy but it seems we choose to stay in one general realm. That realm is, to her point, often about vaginas, periods, being drunk, and/or walk of shame stories. Yes, stand-up comedy is about sharing your life and experiences. Yes, I understand that such topics are just a part of that female experience and sure- we can't help that we were born with vaginas, they're awesome and we love telling the world about our experience with having one. BUT! Is that the only experience we have to offer? Is that the only realm we have to define female humor?
There are PLENTY and I mean PLENTY of female comedians who never make their act based around these topics and who certainly expand outside of that realm. But in comparison to the amount of women who don't expand outside of said realm- the women who actually do begin to fall into the cracks, often overlooked, and become victims of this kind of generalization. If anyone should be upset, it's them.
This was not an attack. It was an opinion. And, quite frankly, an opinion that a lot of people have but are too afraid to admit.
I mean, why would you admit it when it produces reactions like this:
I think it's a topic that's overdue for exploration. Kudos to you Iliza for starting the convo. Perhaps this is really just a big fat case of - THE TRUTH HURTS. #SorryNotSorry