Michael Che compares the national anthem to R. Kelly in new Netflix special
Michael Che likes to play with fire — and he pushes the envelope once again with his new Netflix stand-up special.
In the exclusive clip above, Che brings more of his signature outrageous humor to the stage, comparing the national anthem to the music of convicted sex trafficker R. Kelly. "When I hear the national anthem, do you know what it feels like? It feels like I'm listening to R. Kelly now," Che quips, alluding to the fraught history of "The Star-Spangled Banner."
"It's still good. It's still good," he proclaims. "It's just hard to not think about that other thing."
Che's new Netflix special, Michael Che: Shame the Devil, launches on the streaming platform on Tuesday, Nov. 16. It finds the Saturday Night Live star returning to the stage in Oakland, Calif., where he probes a host of thorny topics, including American patriotism, Black leadership, jealous exes, loose bears, mental health, and more.
The actor, writer, and comedian is a prominent face on NBC's Saturday Night Live, co-anchoring the famous Weekend Update segment alongside Colin Jost. He and Jost are also co-head writers of the long-running sketch show, along with Anna Drezen and Kent Sublette.
Netflix is likely eager to avoid courting controversy with Che's special, given that their last prominent stand-up special, Dave Chapelle's The Closer, came under fire for Chapelle's remarks about the trans community. The criticism sparked a firestorm that included Netflix employees openly speaking against the special, employee suspensions and reinstatements, and a full-scale walkout by Netflix employees supported by the LGBTQ community.
But how well viewers respond to Che's brand of humor remains to be seen, as he's faced backlash before, most recently over the summer for jokes he posted about Olympic gymnast Simone Biles.
Watch the clip above for more.
Michael Che: Shame the Devil is available on Netflix on Nov. 16.
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