ck man

When’s The Last Time You Told Your Straight Buddies About Gay Sex Clubs?

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As promised, Louis CK’s new FX series Louis got right into The Gay in its second episode. They discussed men jerking each other off. And whether straight comics can use the word “faggot.” (Spoilers ahead and in clip above.)

“I talk about gay sex more with you guys than I do with any of my gay friends. You guys are obsessed,” says gay comedian Rick Crom’s character Ray, whose poker buddies are a little too curious about bros sexing bros. But it’s not just a chat about anal penetration: Louis CK (he stars in, writes, and exec produces the show) managed to get his buddies to have a SERIOUS CONVERSATION ABOUT THE WORD “FAGGOT” while having a few laughs. The scene came about because:

Back in the very early 90s, Louis was doing the comedy circuit when he met Rick Crom, the first openly gay comedian he knew. Like his character on the show, the actual Louis used the word “faggot” a great deal in his act, although Louis says he never intended it as an anti-gay slur. Over time, however, he started to wonder “What does it do to a gay man when I say the word ‘faggot’?”

That prompted Louis to ask Crom and their conversation was the basis for the poker table discussion viewers saw in the episode. “I kept [what he told me] inside,” says Louie. “And what I learned from it. … It didn’t tell me not to use that word or any other word, but it did tell me take responsibility for the words you use, to know their impact.” As for the episode’s discussion of gay male sexuality, Louis says that also comes from Crom. “Rick is very open about his stories of New York, you know, extreme gay culture. He’s out there. He tells us these stories of places … I think the real one is called ‘New York Jacks.’ So he told us once about ‘New York Jacks’ at the Comedy Cellar … all these nervous heterosexuals, and we just shriek like little girls. It’s always been funny to me that when it comes to that subject matter, Rick is the elder statesman. … So the idea of having him tell these stories [in the episode] was very compelling.”

It’s crass. It’s crude. And dare I say it: It’s one of the most responsible pieces of gay programming to appear on a non-gay (read: not Glee) television show I’ve ever seen.