louis c.k.

Are Amy Schumer and Jessica Chastain the Next Big Comedy Duo? Links You Need to See

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Ah, Amy Schumer: one of the rare celebrities, who, the more ubiquitous she becomes and the further she gets into her “uncontested reign as the queen of comedy,” the more people love her. Such was the Schumer-description in The Dissolve’s announcement of today’s new Schumer-thing (one does, gladly, seem to come out at least once a week these days). Today’s particular Schumer-thing was especially intriguing, albeit not certain: the comedian may be co-starring with Jessica Chastain as her “wild and crude acquaintance Summer” in the “girls-gone-wild” comedy Plus One. Meanwhile, through the example of Amy Schumer’s latest brilliant sketch (about Bill Cosby), The Atlantic traces how comedians (also included: Louis C.K., Key and Peele, Sarah Silverman, John Oliver) went from being fulfillers of escapism to legitimate public intellectuals, consistently leading audiences to confront the uglier aspects of society.
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‘Louie’ Season 5 Finale Recap: “The Road, Part 2”

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­Usually, when Louis C.K. does a multi-part episode on Louie—like the two-part “Daddy’s Girlfriend,” the three-part “Late Show” and “Pamela,” and the six-part “Eleveator”—it’s to tell a sprawling narrative, to do something structured less like episodic television than like cinema. But the two parts of “The Road,” which close Louie’s fifth season, seem to exist less for purposes of narrative than volume; there’s just too much terrible shit to get into one half-hour, because the road is a miserable, miserable place. And yet…
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‘Louie’ Season 5 Episode 7 Recap: ‘The Road, Part 1’

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The most surprising thing about last night’s Louie is that, with the show winding down its fifth season, C.K. went this long without doing an episode about being a “road comic.” His job has always been a part of the show, obviously, and has even been the focus (as far as Louie has a focus) of a few episodes, but most of the time, the show acts as though a New York stand-up could make his living just working in New York. And even at the monster level he’s at in real life, Louie couldn’t do that. Comics have to go out into the world. In “The Road: Part I,” he shows us a trip to do a one-nighter in Cincinnati—but, at the end of the day, it could be any trip to anywhere. They’re all the same; the name of the city changes, but it’s all The Road.
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The Particular Horror of Hearing Creepy Stories About Famous Men Who Should Know Better

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Between Gawker publishing rumors that beloved comedian Louis C.K. has a tendency to expose himself (and I don’t mean emotionally) to women in the comedy world and today’s BuzzFeed piece alleging that a well-known TV character actor most recently seen on Mad Men acted inappropriately in the publication’s offices, it’s been a banner week for learning that a few male celebrities whose work addresses sexist and downright creepy behavior… may also practice that behavior.
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The Best and Worst of Last Night’s ‘SNL’ with Louis C.K.

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Amid new claims of sexual misconduct, comedian Louis C.K. took to the SNL stage to close out the show’s 40th season. As expected, there was no acknowledgement of the alleged incident (incidents, really, since these rumors have been popping up since 2012), with C.K. getting some uncomfortable laughs during his provocative monologue about child molesters. The 40th season’s final chapter has been, shocker, somewhat disappointing. Reese Witherspoon and Scarlett Johansson tackled cruddy material, while Taraji P. Henson and Dwayne Johnson fared better. But SNL has bounced back from worse, and the show’s growing pains are starting to temper. Say goodbye to 40 with C.K. and musical guest Rihanna, who was perhaps the best part of last night’s episode with a striking multimedia performance.
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‘Louie’ Season 5 Episode 6 Recap: ‘Sleepover’

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A fair number of people have fallen out of love with Louie over the past couple of seasons, and while I don’t agree, I can’t say I don’t understand. It has, after all, gone from a comedy with dramatic beats to something closer to a seriocomic drama—which this viewer enjoys, and thinks it does well, but is the kind of tonal shift that’ll alienate some people no matter how adroitly it’s executed. And when you look at these two seasons in toto, it becomes clear how much of that shift coincides with the accelerating importance of Pamela—both the character, and Pamela Adlon, who plays her. Increasingly, I’ve come to believe that the real value of Louie, and one of its lasting legacies, may very well be that you just don’t see television shows (or films) tacking a relationship that’s this goddamn complicated.
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‘Louie’ Season 5 Episode 5 Recap: “Untitled”

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In light of the high quality Louie has maintained in pretty much every area over the course of its four and half seasons thus far, it’s easy to forget that it started out as a very different kind of show. C.K. has talked pretty openly about the heavy influence Woody Allen’s had on his work, and in its broad strokes, the progression of the show lines up fairly closely with that of the Allen filmography; he started out doing something that was almost purely for laughs, an extension of his stand-up act that was filled with blackout sketches and visual/verbal cartoons. But even in that first season, there were hints that he had more on his mind, and when he wrote his character an Annie Hall-style nervous romance (“Daddy’s Girlfriend,” aka the Parker Posey episodes), the emotional stakes were raised; the comedy became more grounded, more about the real world, and more concerned with genuine emotion. All of which is a long way of getting around to noting that last night’s episode, “Untitled,” was in many ways the closest thing he’s done to that inaugural season in quite some time: a bizarre exercise in pure absurdity.
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‘Louie’ Season 5 Episode 4 Recap: “Bobby’s House”

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Last summer, midway through Louie’s fourth season, Matt Zoller Seitz posited the theory over at Vulture that creator/writer/director/star Louis C.K. “is aware of how Twitter and Facebook and recap culture have changed the way we watch TV, particularly by putting social pressure on viewers to have a loud and definite opinion on an episode right now,” and was thus using his show to troll the Internet. Co-star Pamela Adlon all but confirmed it in a subsequent interview; Vanity Fair’s Joanna Robinson convincingly posited, at the season’s end, that it was about “the cycle of Internet outrage,” and “our tendency as pop-culture consumers toward volatile, knee-jerk reactions.” All of which is a long way of getting around to saying that there are episodes where it feels like Louie’s just plain fucking with us, and last night’s “Bobby’s House” is one of them.
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