Louis C.K. performs surprise set at Comedy Cellar in NYC

Tanya Cunningham
August 29, 2018

Almost a year after admitting to multiple incidents of sexual misconduct, Louis C.K. seems to have returned to stand-up, performing a brief surprise walk-on set at New York's Comedy Cellar on Sunday night. Noam Dworman, owner of the Comedy Cellar (where the Saturday night performance went down) said that he did "typical Louis C.K. stuff", touching on racism, waitresses' tips and parades.

Another comedian, Abby Schachner has claimed that after calling Louis to invite him to one of her shows she could 'hear him masturbating as they spoke'.

Though Dworman acknowledged that "some people will be upset with [him]" for allowing C.K.to perform at his club, he said "there can't be a permanent life sentence on someone who does something wrong". He says the 50-year-old comedian was "very relaxed" and was greeted by an ovation from the audience.

Louis CK released a statement previous year during the height of the #MeToo campaign movement, confirming that allegations made against him by five women, including that he masturbated in front of them, were in fact true and saying that he could never forgive himself for the "scope of hurt" he had caused.

The scandal led to the end of his production deal with FX Networks and the axing of a film he wrote directed and starred in, I Love You, Daddy, which contained echoes of his real-life misconduct. The power I had over these women is that they admired me.

"I believe people can grow and change, but this urgency to bring him (and others) back SO soon just sends such a bad message", she tweeted. Every complaint goes through me like a knife. See some of the outraged reaction to C.K.'s live return below. Long enough? Indulging that conversation gives credence to the people who talk ambiguously about amends with no honest consideration of what it takes to make them - who can not conceive of any worse punishment than being denied the work that they have decided is their birthright.

Speculation about the necessary conditions of C.K.'s eventual return began from nearly the moment the Times published its expose, and slowly took on the tone of a foregone conclusion.

On Twitter, other comedians and writers took to the platform to question the return.

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