The episode is one long parody of 12 Angry Men, Sidney Lumet’s 1957 film about jurors arguing the fate of a man accused of murder. Only this version involves John Hawkes (playing the Henry Fonda role) attempting to convince Paul Giamatti, Jeff Goldblum, Vincent Kartheiser, Kumail Nanjiani, and others that Schumer is hot enough to be on TV. Schumer, who co-directed the sketch, is also indirectly addressing the real comments she’s gotten from male critics who don’t believe she’s attractive enough to be the star of her own movie, Trainwreck.
In a recent interview with HitFix, Schumer said she’s “more proud of it than anything I’ve ever done,” and that she wrote the episode-long sketch to explore why there’s such rage directed at confident women:
There is this strange anger towards women who are comfortable with themselves, who some people feel like they shouldn’t be. The message that’s sent to us through the media and Hollywood and magazines is, “If you’re not one of the most beautiful women in the world, you should hide yourself.” That’s a message that’s being driven through so many different avenues that both men and women start to listen and think, “She has no right to do this.” And also I find that men have this quality that women don’t have where, if I like a guy and I think he’s hot, that’s it. I don’t ask my friends if he’s hot. You know? I have very different taste in men than my friends and my family. There’s never an overlap. And they’ve never checked with me to see if he’s hot. But with men, there is this constant checking in. And you might not think a girl’s that pretty and if your friend thinks she’s hot, that might change how you see her. And I just found that kind of thinking very strange.
When Schumer finally does appear, her response is perfect.
Screengrab via Comedy Central/YouTube