In his new Netflix special Right Now, comedian Aziz Ansari addresses the sexual misconduct allegations published by the now defunct site Babe.net article in 2018. In the Babe.net story, a woman accused Ansari of trying to pressure her into sex while on a date.
Ansari opened his set with a joke about how he gets confused with Patriot Act host Hasan Minhaj. He then took a more somber approach when addressing the allegations the woman made against him 18 months ago.
“You know, I haven’t said much about that whole thing, but I’ve talked about it on this tour, ’cause you’re here and it means a lot to me,” Ansari said, according to the Washington Post. “And I’m sure a lot of you are curious how I feel about that whole situation. And, uh, it’s a tricky thing for me to answer, ’cause I’ve felt so many things in the last year, so. There’s times I’ve felt scared. There’s times I’ve felt humiliated. There’s times I’ve felt embarrassed. And ultimately, I just felt terrible that this person felt this way.”
Ansari added that his situation prompted at least one person close to him to reexamine their conduct while dating.
“I always think about a conversation I had with one of my friends where he was, like: ‘You know what man? That whole thing made me think about every date I’ve ever been on.’ And I thought: ‘Wow. Well, that’s pretty incredible,” Ansari told the crowd. “It’s made not just me but other people be more thoughtful, and that’s a good thing.’ And that’s how I feel about it. And I know this isn’t the most hilarious way to begin a comedy show. But it’s important to me that you know how I feel about that whole thing before we share this night together.”
Ansari then put a button on the issue by concluding: “Well, that was pretty intense. What else shall we talk about?”
In February, Vulture editor Jesse David Fox attended one of Ansari’s standup spots in New York City where Ansari was workshopping the intro which eventually made it onto Right Now. Although the show in February appears to be the first time Ansari addressed the Babe.net story in public, the special marks the first time he formally addressed it on camera.