Scroll To Top

Eddie Murphy 'Cringes' at His Old Offensive Stand-Up Now

Eddie Murphy 'Cringes' at His Old Offensive Stand-Up Now

Eddie Murphy 'Cringes' at His Old Offensive Stand-Up Now

People can learn!


In a time when people like Shane Gillis (that fired almost-SNL comedian, because you’ve probably already forgotten who he is) are still claiming that racism, sexism, and homophobia in comedy is just  “pushing boundaries,” it’s refreshing to see someone genuinely renounce their old offensive acts.

Eddie Murphy went on the record recently admitting that his 1987 stand-up special Raw makes him cringe these days.

“I was a young guy processing a broken heart, you know, kind of an asshole,” he told The New York Times.

Raw was incredibly raunchy for tis time, and while it was well-received by '80s audiences, it did include bits about “faggots” and STDs and a narrative throughline bordering on misogyny, none of which would hold up well today.

This isn’t the first time Murphy has acknowledged that his earlier comedic routines contained material that was not only cringeworthy, but actually harmful to marginalized communities.

His 1983 special, Delirious, targeted the gay community and people with AIDS in particular. By 1996, Murphy had realized the harm he had done and issued an apology for his past jokes.

“I deeply regret any pain all this has caused,” he said at the time. “I know how serious an issue AIDS is the world over. I know that AIDS isn’t funny. It’s 1996 and I’m a lot smarter about AIDS now.”

Murphy’s recent comments come as he is on the verge of returning to stand-up comedy with a new tour. And while he originally said he left stand-up because it was too easy to generate backlash, he has now admitted he wishes he hadn’t given it up.

Noting that some comedians today are very vocal in their complaints when people voice offense over offensive jokes, Murphy says: “I went through all that stuff, so this is not scary. All this stuff they are talking about: ‘Hey, welcome to the club.’”

Banner Image OneOut Magazine - Fellow Travelers

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories