Dave Chappelle’s – The Closer

Dave Chappelle’s Final Netflix Comedy Special

Austin Lentz, Contributor

Dave Chappelle, arguably the GOAT (Greatest of All Time) of comedy, has faced public scrutiny for years. While cancel culture has attempted to dethrone the king of stand-up comedy, regardless of any social commentary, through it all he has still stood atop the mountain.  

Chappelle recently released his supposed final comedy special on Netflix, titled The Closer that took place in Detroit, Michigan. Chappelle’s satirical comedy has pushed the envelope for years with The Chappelle Show making him a household name. The show ran on Comedy Central from 2003 to 2006 for 3 seasons. In the midst of all the popularity surrounding Chappelle and the show, he walked away due to public outcry, even with a $50 million dollar paycheck on the table. Comedy Central finished season 3 of The Chappelle Show using old skits that had not previously made the cut. Doing this without Chappelle’s prior consent left a deep gash in the relationship. Chappelle even jokingly addressed that he has been watching Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele, Key & Peele do his for years in a prior comedy special. Chappelle came back to TV with the help of the streaming service giant Netflix, signing a contract in 2016 with Netflix to release three comedy specials for a whopping $20 million dollars a piece. In 2017 Netflix released The Age of Spin, Deep in the Heart of Texas, and Equanimity. Netflix then released another special titled, The Bird Revelation the same year. After a small hiatus he returned in 2019 with Sticks & Stones, Netflix’s most watched and viewed comedy special ever, which also faced public out-lash for jokes about the LGBTQ community and Michael Jackson’s accusers. 

The COVID-19 pandemic limited the ability to film specials making The Closer release on October 5th, 2021. On October 4th, Dave Chappelle went to twitter to let his fans know that his final Netflix comedy special would be releasing the following day. The teaser video features actor Morgan Freeman riding in a truck, alongside Chappelle narrating what he is thinking. Chappelle quickly stomps on the break and begins to yell at Morgan Freeman asking him “Will you shut the f**k up Morgan Freeman?” Chappelle goes on to allow Freeman to continue the narration with his approval, as they continue to drive down the road. Morgan Freeman has completed narrations for Chappelle on multiple occasions for his specials. 

Netflix’s description of The Closer states “As he closes out his slate of comedy specials, Dave takes the stage to try and set the record straight – and get a few things off his chest.” He does just that. Chappelle goes into many topics, pitching a movie idea, the LGBTQ community, his relationship with women, and carries on multiple jokes from his previous specials and performances.

Chappelle opens his standup alerting the crowd on what The Closer title means, “I need you guys to know something and I’m gonna tell you the truth, and don’t get freaked out. This is going to be my last special for a minute.” Confirming that this will be his last stand-up community, for now. 

The LGBTQ community has long had issues with Chappelle and his stand-up routines, and this special is no different. Chappelle declared himself team TERF (trans-exclusionary radical feminists) and received backlash from the trans community on Twitter. “Gender is a fact. Every human being in this room, every human being on Earth, had to pass through the legs of a woman to be on Earth. This is a fact.” As Chappelle addresses the LGBTQ community, explaining what he has a problem with. 

Chappelle even addressed the outrage he received on Twitter from his last comedy special Sticks and Stones, “When Sticks and Stones came out a lot of people in the trans community were furious with me and apparently they dragged me on twitter. I don’t give a f**k ‘cause Twitter is not a real place.” 

Chappelle closed off his final Netflix show with a thank you and goodnight followed by a mic drop and multiple salutes to the crowd, as they stood on their feet cheering and applauding. 

Chappelle has received backlash for many of his jokes for years, yet he continues to do what he does best. Make jokes. 

Chappelle’s last comedy special can be found on Netflix.com.