Chris D’Elia has performed his first set of stand-up comedy since allegations of sexual misconduct were made against him, making a surprise appearance at Hollywood’s Laugh Factory last week.
His unannounced 20-minute set came as part of the venue’s Laugh-O-Rama line-up last Saturday (August 21), which also featured the likes of Erik Griffin, Sherri Shepherd, BT Kingsley and Max Amini.
Speaking with the Hollywood Reporter after the show, an unnamed attendee said the crowd “had a positive response” to D’Elia’s performance, calling it “absolutely hilarious” and “the best of the night”.
The source noted that although D’Elia didn’t outwardly reference the allegations of sexual misconduct, he did “joke about being cancelled”. They told the Hollywood Reporter: “It was a lot of self-loathing humour. At one point, he made some crude jokes and said that he wasn’t sure if he crossed a line but that he couldn’t really be cancelled twice.”
D’Elia – who’d previously made waves for his uncanny impressions of Eminem – was first accused of sexual harassment and misconduct in June 2020. Multiple women came forward with claims against D’Elia, with at least one accuser noting that she was underage at the time of the alleged incident.
The comedian vehemently denied such accusations, saying in a statement to TMZ that he “never knowingly pursued any underage women at any point”.
After the accusations surfaced, D’Elia was dropped by both of his two talent agencies, had a series he’d been developing for Netflix scrapped, and had his role in Zack Snyder’s film Army Of The Dead replaced by fellow comedian Tig Notaro.
Most recently, it was reported D’Elia was facing a child pornography lawsuit, after a woman claimed that he had sex with her when she was 17 and solicited explicit photos of her. D’Elia also denied this accusation, with a spokesperson claiming he “will vigorously defend against them in court”.
D’Elia isn’t the first comedian to make a surprise comeback after being accused of sexual misconduct. Louis C.K. is one notable example, making an unannounced appearance at a New York comedy club ten months after he admitted to sexually harassing five women – reportedly going as far as to include a rape joke in his routine.