Katherine Ryan has explained her decision to call a comedian a “predator” during the recording of a TV show.
Ryan revealed last year that she confronted an unnamed comedian during the taping of a TV show for being a “perpetrator of sexual assault”.
Speaking to Desert Island Discs yesterday (October 1), Ryan was asked about the interview last year in which she spoke about an unnamed comedian.
“I got a lot of pushback, like, ‘Why won’t you say who it is?’ It’s because everyone knows who it is. What they’re asking me for is the women’s names. And that’s what I won’t give and that’s why I was reluctant to talk about it,” she said.
“There are a few women’s names that I think investigators are looking for and that’s what they’re asking me for. No one’s asking me for his name. So it’s funny how people go straight to accusing, ‘You are the problem. You won’t give his name.’ It’s like, we’re not the problem.
“I had a choice. I could go to work with someone whom I believe to be a perpetrator of sexual assault, or I could turn down the job. Those were my options. And so I wrestled with that. I thought, what am I meant to do in this instance? Am I meant to go and be near someone that I think these things about?”
Ryan then clarified that it was not someone who had assaulted her, adding she had “never been assaulted”.
She continued: “The choice is, do I go to work with someone who I think is very problematic and do I stand near them and laugh and smile and look like I am allowing this kind of person to still be on television, or do I stay home?”
“That was really difficult for me. That’s what I wrestled with the most. Because I believe that this person was or is dangerous, but also what am I going to change if I stay home?
“My compromise was, alright, I’m gonna go, but I’m going to let him know under no uncertain terms what I think of him. I’m not gonna just smile and look like I’m allowing this behaviour. I’m not going to let him think that I don’t know, and that everybody he works with is just going to let him get away with it.
“So that is the attitude I took into the show. And did I do the right thing or the wrong thing? I still don’t know, but I just felt like why should I stay home? He should stay home. If he’s going to be there, I’m going to be there. And I’m gonna tell him what I think.”
Asked about the comedian’s reaction to her allegations, Ryan said “he certainly didn’t have an obvious reaction”, while also revealing that other comics “thought it was funny and courageous the way that I said it”.
The Desert Island Discs episode was recorded before Russell Brand was recently accused of rape and sexual assault by four women between 2006 and 2013 as part of a joint investigation by The Times, The Sunday Times and Channel 4’s Dispatches. Brand has denied all the allegations, saying his relationships were consensual.