In the two years since she went public with an incident of sexual misconduct by Louis C.K., former Chicago comedian Julia Wolov has been largely silent about the event. But she is speaking out again this week after a comedy club owner booked C.K. and defended the move online.
Wolov and longtime friend and comedy partner Dana Goodman were among five women who described predatory behavior by the stand-up comedian in a 2017 New York Times article. C.K. confirmed the events in a remorseful statement shortly thereafter but lost several projects as a result of the revelations, among them a movie that was pulled from release and his FX series “Louie,” which was canceled.
In recent months he has resumed touring and performed six shows in September at Zanies in Rosemont. This week’s discussions spring from a booking in September at Yuk Yuk’s in Toronto.
Yuk Yuk’s founder Mark Breslin explained the hiring in a column in the Canadian Jewish News that attempted to distinguish C.K. from predatory celebrities Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein and Roger Ailes. In the 2002 incident involving Wolov and Goodman, C.K. had invited them to his hotel room, where he asked if he could take out his penis. After the women laughed off the request, he took off all his clothes and began masturbating.
“There was no assault,” Breslin wrote, “there was consent (followed by regret), and for that, many believe that he shouldn’t have to be subjected to permanent exile.”
Wolov took issue with that in a letter to the publication.
“Contrary to Breslin’s accounting, what C.K. did was not done with consent,” Wolov wrote. “We never agreed nor asked him to take all his clothes off and masturbate to completion in front of us. But it didn’t matter because the exciting part for him was the fear on our faces.”
She also reacted to his claim that people he surveyed thought CK has been treated unfairly. “What if this had happened to your daughter or son? Or your wife?” Wolov wrote. “How would you feel? How would you feel about them getting consistent hate mail from Louis C.K. supporters who tell them to kill themselves? Did this factor into the author’s ‘unscientific market survey’?”
The duo met at an ImprovOlympic class in Chicago in 1995 and made their name locally with a bawdy two-woman sketch show. After moving to Los Angeles, they appeared in Adam Sandler movies including “Just Go With It” and “That’s My Boy” but worked primarily as writers, creating the MTV series “Faking It.”
Wolov told the Canadian Press she believes she and Goodman have lost out on writing jobs as a result of coming forward about C.K.
“He won’t go away and it won’t go away,” she said. “We really want to do something so we aren’t just the girls who Louis C.K. masturbated in front of because we aren’t that. We’ve been doing this for 26 years, we’ve been writing and performing and now that’s our new title.”