December 11, 2018

"The joke wasn’t funny to me anymore..."

From "Julia Louis-Dreyfus Acts Out/The actress on challenging comedy’s sexism, fighting cancer, and becoming the star of her own show" (The New Yorker)
Louis-Dreyfus, who is fifty-seven, had a memorable part in the 2015 sketch “Last Fuckable Day,” on the Comedy Central series “Inside Amy Schumer.” In it, Schumer is hiking through the woods when she happens upon Patricia Arquette and Tina Fey, feasting and drinking toasts to Louis-Dreyfus. “In every actress’s life, the media decides when you finally reach the point where you’re not believably fuckable anymore,” Louis-Dreyfus explains. “I’m thrilled. Ecstatic!” Then she guzzles a quart of melted ice cream, burps, and farts. “Who tells men when it’s their last fuckable day?” Schumer asks. The other women crack up.

“I don’t know why, exactly, but there was a moment while I was doing it in which I lost my sense of humor about it,” Louis-Dreyfus told me. “The joke wasn’t funny to me anymore, and I had this complete crisis of confidence.”
Here's the sketch. I could only get through the first minute and five seconds of what goes on for almost 5 minutes.  I get that the criticism is of "the media," and I don’t know why, exactly, but there was a moment while I was watching it in which I lost my sense of humor about it. It was 1:06.

ADDED: Who wrote that sketch? Amy Schumer? If so, this is Julia Louis-Dreyfus trashing Schumer. I looked it up and found "An Oral History of Amy Schumer’s 'Last Fuckable Day' Sketch/The inspiration, the improvised lines from Tina Fey, and the 'total dream day' when it all came together" (a Vanity Fair article by Bruce Handy from 2016):
Amy Schumer, executive producer, writer, star, Inside Amy Schumer: “Last Fuckable Day”—that was like Jessi’s and my baby....

Jessi Klein, executive producer, head writer, Inside Amy Schumer: This sketch had kind of been my white whale for a long time. It came out of a conversation we were all having one morning [in the writers’ room]. I think we were just talking about magazines, like Us Weekly. I don’t remember what the exact conversation was. Probably we were talking about Susan Sarandon, just because she’s had to carry the mantle of being the fuckable older actress for so long. Like is there that moment where it just stops? And someone—I don’t remember who—said, “Oh, what’s her last fuckable day?” And everyone was like, that’s such a funny idea. Like one day Halle Berry, I guess, will have a last fuckable day?...

Kent Alterman, president of original programming, Comedy Central: “Last Fuckable Day” was originally written for, I think, Sigourney Weaver and Susan Sarandon and, I can’t remember, one other actor. It was just always a scheduling problem. I think there was interest. It went through a couple seasons as a possibility.

Amy Schumer: Everyone said no—the actresses. They didn’t want to be in a scene called “Last Fuckable Day.” Jessi had to do a million rewrites, because we kept switching the actresses we were sending it to. Like, “O.K., we’re sending it to Julianne Moore. Change it so that it makes sense for her.” But we wound up getting the best cast. Like it was thank God that the first batch said no....
ALSO: "Fuckable" is such an ugly word, but it's in the Oxford English Dictionary, which shows it's been around a long time. The oldest example found in print:
?1889 ‘C. Deveureux’ Vénus in India II. 113 The poor man had at last outwitted his careful wife and obtained a much longed for, fuckable cunt.

81 comments:

rehajm said...

Meet Your Second Wife

This is Tina Fey's shtick. If we didn't laugh we'd cry. JLD caught on quickly.

Jeff Brokaw said...

Maybe it was never funny, just shocking and outrageous pretending to be funny.

Ann Althouse said...

Julia Louis-Drefus did not have to trash Amy Schumer. She chose to.

MayBee said...

I get the commentary, but if it's up to the "media", we are "unfuckable" the minute we are 25 lbs + overweight, or a boy with zits and an interest in computers.

And Amy Schumer can complain about what the media doesn't tell men, but nature often tells men their fuckability is waning. Now they make pills for ED, but I don't think we've ever had a serious discussion about what that might mean to men--- outside of how unfair it used to be the insurance paid for Viagra and not birth control pills. It was always about how *financially* unfair to *women* men having ED is.

David Begley said...

Reminds me of the time when George W. Bush (who was drinking at the time) asked at the dinner table of guests at his parents’ house, “What’s sex like after 40?”

He stopped drinking after that.

Ralph L said...

The video didn't run for me. Here it is on Youtube.

Netflix has too many gratuitous f-bombs, too.

Hagar said...

I am sorry to see Elaine went on a show with dialogue like this.

campy said...

Where's the "That's Not Funny!" tag?

Ann Althouse said...

I don't like to see women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming. It's an old idea for female comedians. Phyllis Diller and Joan Rivers did it very heavily.

tim maguire said...

“Who tells men when it’s their last fuckable day?”

The woman they're trying to sleep with.

Another yawner. Privileged white women pretending they're oppressed.

Ralph L said...

women internalizing male judgment

Men do the reverse but don't talk about it.

gspencer said...

"But we wound up getting the best cast"

Seriously?

A banana peel on a sidewalk beats that forever and a day.

tim maguire said...

Ann Althouse said...I don't like to see women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming.

Men and women deal with it differently, but virtually every person on earth, man, woman, or other, has to deal with other people's judgment of their sexual desirability.

Women aren't special.

Hagar said...

George Jean Nathan wrote a piece for the old Esquire in which he likened women's minds to "sewers under rose beds."

MayBee said...

tim maguire said...Men and women deal with it differently, but virtually every person on earth, man, woman, or other, has to deal with other people's judgment of their sexual desirability.

Women aren't special.

This.

Ann Althouse said...I don't like to see women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming.
I agree with this, but what I really don't like is women comparing themselves to some imagined way men sail through life. As I've said before, it isn't good for women to take the humanity of men away.
Women and men do have some different problems, but we both have problems. I am agains this kind of everyday beatification of women as perfect special and powerful creatures, while holding on to an old version of men having no real emotional needs (unless they feel like attending some camp because they've been chastened into having emotional reckonings)

Roy Lofquist said...

I don't know about the "last fuckable day" thing but I've met a number of women whose "last fuckable moment" came when they opened their mouths.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Its not funny. Here is a sketch that makes the same point, but is.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtPsxClqrAc

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

A Twofer: ageism and sexism. Disparaging people for characteristics they have no control over (age and sex). For greater hilarity, include actors blinded, disfigured, or wheel-chair bound by an accident in mid-career.

tim in vermont said...

I thought that Snow White was written ages ago:

“Mirror mirror, on the wall,
who’s the fairest of them all?”

It’s that young bitch Snow White now?!?!?!

These women don’t just want to be attractive to men they find attractive. They are all plenty “fuckable” if you are talking about “meat world,” or IRL. So it’s not about “internalizing male judgement.” It’s about trying to stay at the top of an industry and keep down newcomers.

How about a skit about a Major League pitcher on the last un-hittable fastball he threw, and how touch it was to see studly young arms come to take his place? Oh yeah, Susan Sarandan was in that one, in fact she married IRL the young stud.

rhhardin said...

It seemed fine to me, not funny with punch lines but funny like Veep, playing on a difference between the audience and the performers as to what's going on.

Here taking actors as corresponding to politicians in Veep.

The underlying truth is that an actress is fuckable if you like her character, not if you like her, and you think you'd fit in. It's a bother to keep that front up. Relax and go for the hard hitting district attorney roles.

It's less about looks than yis supposed.

Mary Beth said...

She said she had a "complete crisis of confidence". I see that as saying that Schumer's skit did to her what Schumer was accusing the media of doing. The only thing funny is having someone who never had a first fuckable day talking about someone else's last one.

Big Mike said...

Like, “O.K., we’re sending it to Julianne Moore. Change it so that it makes sense for her.”

Wait! Someone thinks Julianne Moore isn’t fuckable? Says who?

rhhardin said...

If men aren't awful and are rich, lots of women see themselves as fitting in.

tim in vermont said...

It does remind me of the joke of when the union boss went to a whorehouse during a convention and he was forced to take the woman with the most seniority.

rhhardin said...

Meg Ryan went to unfuckable with In the Cut. Her fans no longer saw themselves fitting in.

Big Mike said...

@tim in vermont, too funny!

Ron Winkleheimer said...

Amy Schumer is not funny. I'm not saying that because I disagree with her politics. She simply lacks the talent. Her jokes are flat and she lacks comedic timing. You know, Phyllis Diller and Joan Rivers talked about their hoo-haws a lot too, but they were funny.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oWncIpPuNJo

Patrick said...

Reminds me of this Smiths song.
https://youtu.be/gpVJw5KPv_U

But that joke isn't funny anymore
It's too close to home
And it's too near the bone
It's too close to home
And it's too near the bone
More than you'll ever know

traditionalguy said...

The women in their 60s are twice as fuckable as ever. Their only problem is finding a young enough man.

rhhardin said...

Julia Louis-Drefus brought up her pussy from time to time, not really often, in Veep in this or that context, with good comedic effect - bringing out the huge difference between how politicians think and their act in public, to the point of even her cynical staff noticing but pretending not to notice.

Darrell said...

When they say "Social Justice" or "Intersectionality."

(Yes, Roy Lofquist said it first--generally.)

Lucid-Ideas said...

Julia Louis-Drefus did not have to trash Amy Schumer. She chose to.

I don't like to see women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming. It's an old idea for female comedians.

File under just girly things

https://www.pinterest.com/nivs98/just-girly-things/

Shouting Thomas said...


I don't like to see women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming.


Your Marxist class affinity proclamations are really obnoxious.

It's a ridiculous game you're playing, based on a bullshit grievance. You're rich. You've always been rich.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Didn't watch the sketch. But the proper ending would be to have Betty White show up and explain that, in certain corners of the internet, there is no such thing as a Last Fuckable Day.

Shouting Thomas said...

Why do you talk this horseshit half psychobabble/Marxist feminist shit, prof?

You're ruthless about dissecting and rejecting this kind of pompous shit when any other person utters it.

Even the brightest minds among us succumb to infantile stupidity when pushing his/her self-interest.

rhhardin said...

Julianne Moore would have been more fuckable in Laws of Attraction is she'd been scripted to be Pierce Brosnan's equal in wit, instead of consistently slightly below him. A perfectly fine romcom with no tits.

As it was you'd have to reduce your conversation level to talk to her (since you're Brosnan), which isn't fitting in exactly.

Wince said...

I don't like to see women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming.

The people who produced this would probably say the same, and argue that’s why we portrayed it so explicitly, to reveal that to the women who are less mindful.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Saying Amy Schumer and Not Funny is just redundant.

Women become less sexually desirable as they age. Just like bananas in the grocery store. The old brown bananas are not generally picked.

Old news. As old as when the first apeman walked upright. Not fuckable doesn't mean useless or unattractive though. There are plenty of needed places in society for older women and men.

The hardest thing for women (speaking from a woman's point of view, since it is my view) is to recognize when you have crossed the Rubicon. FACE IT. You are older. Less sexually attractive to the opposite sex in a general sense. Hopefully still sexually attractive to your spouse/partner. Even if one or both of you might be unable to act upon those attractions as you used to when you were young, for physical reasons....there are still ways :-)

Your daughters are now the young sexually favored, fertile, rising stars. Accept this and be proud. Don't accept it; and become an unattractive, sour, bitter, avoidable person. Like Amy Schumer.

It is life. Live it and accept the turning of the seasons.

BidenFamilyTaxPayerFundedCrackPipe said...

Amy Schumer jumped the Shark. Sadly, the weight of Schumer crushed the poor shark and the shark is now dead.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Amy Schumer is still waiting for her first fuckable day.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Ann Althouse said...Julia Louis-Dreyfus did not have to trash Amy Schumer. She chose to.

It's rarely a bad idea to trash Amy Schumer. Her show had had some good writers but she is not good.

Julie LD back on SNL = funny and very attractive. Veep is very good; I like that they've veered so far from "The Thick of It" since that show was better at the story-based comedy and Veep is much better at the character-based comedy JLD is so good at.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

To quote myself. Women become less sexually desirable as they age. Just like bananas in the grocery store. The old brown bananas are not generally picked.

This is often a mistake because those older bananas are ripened and have the best flavor. They make delicious banana bread or cupcakes. Don't avoid the older bananas. You might be in for a treat.

:-D

Rory said...

DBQ said: "Your daughters are now the young sexually favored, fertile, rising stars. Accept this and be proud."

There's also the problem that the young can't supply maturity, wisdom, perspective. When old people refuse to accept mature roles in life, we end up without grownups.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Tina Fey interests me in that she worked as a writer for a long time and talks about how when she transitioned to working in front of the camera she lost weight and sexed herself up and felt that made a difference...while also being strongly critical and/or viciously mocking people (mostly women) who rely on their looks to get ahead. Kinda like how she's super girl-power feminist but made a name for herself mocking Sarah Palin using traditional misogynist tropes. Eh.

richlb said...

I'd fuck Tina Fey and JLD. Arquette? Nah. Pass on Schumer, too.

Xmas said...

"Meet Your Second Wife" is a great skit.

The Schumer skit wasn't...bad. It wasn't funny. It was just kind of sad.

glenn said...

Actually I know a 76 year old woman who is a babe. It happens.

tim in vermont said...

“Who tells men when it’s their last fuckable day?”

The Turk.

Unknown said...

It's a matter of taste. I gave up dating older women when they wanted me to jump through hoops for their 60-year old pussy. It wasn't unfuckable, just not worth the effort. Others, of all ages, became past their prime date the moment they opened their mouths without sex involved.

I am certain I am past the last fuckable date, but some change their opinions afterwards and others just deposit the cash in their bank accounts.

THEOLDMAN

walter said...

Blogger Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...
Amy Schumer is still waiting for her first fuckable day
--
You clearly don't want to be "Inside Amy Schumer".
I have long felt the same about Sarandon..never understood the fascination.

HoodlumDoodlum said...Tina Fey interests me in that she worked as a writer for a long time and talks about how when she transitioned to working in front of the camera she lost weight and sexed herself up and felt that made a difference...while also being strongly critical and/or viciously mocking people (mostly women) who rely on their looks to get ahead.
--
Just the usual..using looks when they have them, calling foul when they slip.

tim maguire said...

As I get older, the age of women I see as possible (if I were single and you were single...) sex partners gets older too. That doesn't mean I don't find the younger women as attractive as ever, but if she's fit, has a decent personality, and practices good personal hygiene, there's no such thing as too old to fuck.

My wife really likes Netflix-produced shows because they portray older women as sexual beings worthy of romance.

Rick.T. said...

DBQ -

In my opinion, a banana isn't worth anything until it has a couple of age spots on it.

n.n said...

#MeToo cannot reconcile with #HerToo. Female chauvinism is as or more toxic than male chauvinism to both women, men, and babies, too.

rcocean said...

That sketch is brutal.

A one joke sketch that goes on for five minutes.

JLD is a fine comedic actress but she's only as good as her material. She was on one of the lowest rated, least popular SNL shows in the 80s. People ask how could it be so bad with her in it? Simple.

She's only as good as her material.

rcocean said...

Maybe women comics should stop obsessing over what's PC, and try to write funnier jokes.

rcocean said...

This feminist complaint about the "Double standard" gets old.

Sorry girls, that's life. Actresses have gotten leading roles when they were 18. Guys usually need to wait till their late 20s.

rcocean said...

The dislike of the word "Fuckable" is hilarious.

Its just a word.

Supposedly Pauline Kael was a raunchy bitch who loved profanity, but was offended when she went to a Hollywood producer's office and found two piles of Actress pictures - one labeled "fuckable" (worthy of part) the other "Not Fuckable" (too ugly).

Maybe its because Pauline was always "Not Fuckable"

Joe said...

This is brilliant! They need to produce even more material with people I dislike so I can so easily avoid them. They can make entire movies I won't watch.

Howard said...

The thought of inside Amy Shuemer prevents premature ejaculation

PM said...

I'm more inclined to agree with Capote: "Women are like rattlesnakes. The last thing to stop shaking is their tail."

Char Char Binks, Esq. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Char Char Binks, Esq. said...

EVERYBODY has a last fuckable day, at least those who were ever fuckable at any point. Deal with it.

Tom T. said...

Interesting that even when no longer f*ckable, they are still invited to participate in an oral history.

Tom T. said...

"...women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming...."

Not taking the blame here, Prof. Nine out of ten men would still find JLD every bit as attractive as ever. The enemies these actresses face are the endless coterie of ruthless younger women trying to push them aside, and the (disproportionately gay or, if straight, disproportionately predatory) men in the industry who are happy to stoke that conflict and profit from it in one way or another.

Yancey Ward said...

I highly recommend the MadTV skit posted above by Ron Winkleheimer- much, much funnier and on the same topic.

Link

Bay Area Guy said...

If we're talking fuckability factors, I would offer the following analysis:

Amy Schmumer - -not fuckable. In fact, completely unfuckable.

Tina Fey - borderline fuckable, has potential. Nice sense of humor, which goes a long way.

Julia Louis-Dreyfuss -- yowzah! Very high on the fuckability meter!

I am not Laslo.

Jupiter said...

Ann Althouse said...
"Julia Louis-Drefus did not have to trash Amy Schumer. She chose to."

I don't think she's trashing Schumer. I think she's saying that the joke was funny because it was true, and the truth hurts.

Jupiter said...

And I actually enjoyed the sketch. Partly, I suppose, because I have always enjoyed sitting around getting drunk with witty, pretty women. Not that I ever got to do that very often, but sometimes when you're the only man, you can go fly-on-the-wall, and the girls will let their hair down. Girl talk!

William said...

JLD is the daughter of a billionaire. She grew up pretty and smart and with every advantage. She had a successful career and points in the lucrative Seinfeld franchise. She even topped the Seinfeld show with Veep. On just about every level her life has been blessed. I'm very sorry that with the passage of time she acquired wrinkles and became less fuckable than in former years. Still when you compare her plight to that of Asian valedictorians who were unable to get into Harvard, you can put such sorrows into perspective......It's a shame about the cancer though. Nature can screw you over in ways beyond the powers of men and society. Even if we made all the institutions and customs fair and equitable, life would still suck.

Earnest Prole said...

Satire tells uncomfortable truths.

Meade said...

"'Fuckable' is such an ugly word, but it's in the Oxford English Dictionary, which shows it's been around a long time."

The problem is the word "love" got replaced with "fuck." It started back in the 60's I think. I blame the peace&fuck generation. That is, my generation.

Try this: replace "fuck" with "love." E.g.:

Lovable
Last Lovable Day
Get loved
Lovin' A, man
Go love yourself!
You little mother-lover
Holy love!
Love that!
Love no!"
Love off!
Love you!
Get your head loved!
Go love yourself in the ass!

See how that solves your problem?

Last Lovable Day = the day you take your last breath

Jupiter said...

Meade has a point. The sketch should actually be called "Last Day As A Woman So Fuckable That Other People Will Pay $10 To Watch A Movie With You In It". Puts the thing in its proper perspective.

Bilwick said...

Let's use the slightly more PG-rated "shtuppable." (I like the word "shtup" anyway. It's one of those Yiddish words that I knew the meaning of the instant I heard it.) Last I checked JLD was eminently shtuppable. Far more than the loathesome swine Schumer, anyway.

Amadeus 48 said...

"But we wound up getting the best cast. Like it was thank God that the first batch said no...."

Amy shows that she possesses a high degree of hucksterism. Just like Trump.

Earnest Prole said...

Julia Louis-Dreyfus must now disavow the joke as That's Not Funny because cultural politics have shifted since she did the sketch, and because she knows the unfuckable bell tolls for her too and she legitimately fears it. There’s no current as powerful as the confluence of personal interest and political correctness.

JaimeRoberto said...

I thought it was pretty funny, but I could do without the proliferation of F-bombs. That's just bad writing.

Leland said...

I agree with Roy Lofquist that it is more a moment based on what is said.

Alas, I think there is a line of maturity that is crossed when you no longer define the value of your life on the ability to convince someone to have sex with you. Obviously Schumer hasn't made it to that crossing.

William said...

Did Amy Schumer ever have a first f*ckable day? Who was the poor schlub?

cubanbob said...

The wonderful thing about money is that if you have enough of it, there never is a last fuckable day. Someone will always want to do you.

Zach said...

Julia Louis-Dreyfus is an odd choice for someone to pin this sketch on. She's never been a sexpot and has had, what, a forty-year career as a comic actress? Maybe she keeps getting cast in things because she's really talented.

Shumer's comic persona sometimes comes across as "I should be so much more successful than I am, and it's all your fault, you look-ist!"

Basically, whining with laugh tracks.

Zach said...

I don't like to see women internalizing male judgment and self-shaming.

It's not self-shaming, it's whining. Remember, Shumer is the point of view character here, not Louis-Dreyfus.

The message of the skit is "Look at these beloved actresses who stopped getting parts when their looks went south! It's a rigged game for someone like me!"