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Sarah Silverman said on Howard Stern’s SiriusXM show on Monday that in the early days of their comedy careers, when they were letting their “freak flags fly,” she consented after Louis C.K. asked to masturbate in front of her.
Though, she didn’t consent every time. “Sometimes, yeah, I wanted to see it, it was amazing,” she said. “Sometimes I would say, ‘Fucking no, gross,’ and we got pizza.”
C.K. admitted a year ago that he masturbated in front of multiple women without their consent after a New York Times article detailed the accusations. Silverman, his longtime friend, attempted to make sense of it on her Hulu show I Love You, America.
“I wish I could sit this one out,” Silverman said at the time before admitting she was “very angry” for the victims but also “sad” for her friend.
Silverman’s sister Laura tweeted last year that before he was famous and after the two briefly dated, C.K. masturbated in front of her during a road trip roughly 20 times.
After that, it’s was Louis C.K., on a cross country trip before he was famous. About 20 times. Not criminal. But compulsive, rude & gross.— B Kavs’ Future Cauliflower Nose (@LauraJSilverman) November 9, 2017
On Stern’s show, Silverman made a point to say that participating when C.K. asked is not the same as C.K. masturbating in front of women who did not say yes—”he could offer me nothing,” she said—and that as his status in the comedy world changed, his behavior did not: “He felt like he was the same person, but the dynamic was different, and it was not OK.”
Silverman doesn’t think C.K. should be ousted from the comedy community; she suggested that he mine the depths of his psyche—a thing he built his comedy persona on—and discuss his behavior onstage, which is not something he has done during his recent “surprise” sets in New York City.
“I’m not saying everyone should embrace Louis again,” she said. “I believe he has remorse. I just want him to talk about it onstage.”
C.K was recently criticized for a bit in his new act in which he lamented losing “$35 million in an hour” as a result of being held accountable for his actions.
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Audra Schroeder is the Daily Dot’s senior entertainment writer, and she focuses on streaming, comedy, and music. Her work has previously appeared in the Austin Chronicle, the Dallas Observer, NPR, ESPN, Bitch, and the Village Voice. She is based in Austin, Texas.