stopped by Late Night with Seth Meyers the other night to talk his new special, the second season of Crashing and, oh, right, sexual harassment. And by “talk” sexual harassment I mean he cracked a few jokes about how it’s such a no-brainer that you shouldn’t harass people, and boy does he hope nothing embarrassing ever comes out about him.
A good rule when you’re talking about sexual harassment, if you’re a man, and especially if you have the status and high profile that somebody like Apatow has, might be: Don’t reflexively make other people’s experiences about you. Another one might be: Read the goddamn room, dude! When Meyers brings up Al Franken, Apatow says his first concern, after seeing the photo of Franken groping Leeann Tweeden, was whether he’s ever appeared in any incriminating photos. “It’s concerning because I was like, ‘What photos have I taken in my life?’” he said. “You ever think that? Do you do the Rolodex, just go like, ‘What have I done?’ So, I went through all my photos—I went through 35 thousand photos, honestly, and scrolled to see, like, what do I have on the cloud that will someone will find one day and end me?”
Meyers asks if he found anything particularly embarrassing. Apatow: “There were literally hundreds of me pretending to blow guys… but we were all laughing, and I think it’s okay.”
Ah! I see. So the most embarrassing thing from your past is you… pretending to be gay. On hundreds of occasions. Making a fun little joke out of gay sex acts with your friends. Who all thought it was funny. So you have nothing to be ashamed of. And this… this is what you would like us to know, now, during a painful national conversation about sexual harassment and assault. And the systems that enable and protect offenders. And the culture. And don’t forget to watch Crashing, the show about a fun boys’ club called comedy.
Cool! I’ll keep that all in mind.
Watch the full segment here:
Seth Simons is Paste’s assistant comedy editor. Follow him on Twitter.