Cameron Esposito: Comedian of consequence
Groundbreaking stand-up comic Cameron Esposito on documenting queer history and making jokes in the #MeToo era
Robyn Von Swank
Since she shot to international fame appearing on Jay Leno’s late night talk show five years ago, Cameron Esposito’s career has been a series of iconic, lesbionic moments. From that dearly departed signature side mullet to Take My Wife, the acclaimed sitcom she wrote and starred in with her comedian spouse Rhea Butcher, Cameron makes comedy that counts. Her frigging hilarious sophomore album Same Sex Symbol is unapologetically queer (“As you can tell by my haircut, I am a Thundercat... AND ALSO A GIANT LESBIAN!”) and still managed to debut at number one on the iTunes comedy charts. Once you’ve downloaded and devoured that, move onto Marriage Material, her comedy show/bachelorette party about finally tying the knot with her lady love, and then there’s the astonishing Rape Jokes, a brutally honest special based on her personal experience of sexual assault, hailed by The Daily Beast as “the first great stand-up set of the #MeToo era”. (Watch it for free at cameronesposito.com and, if you can afford to, donate money to support survivors.)
Now she’s heading to the UK to perform a brand new hour at London’s Soho Theatre. Naturally, we jumped at the chance to chat to Cameron about queerness, comedy and how she’s changing the world, one lesbian joke at a time.
DIVA: How much has the comedy industry changed for women and for queer people since you started performing?
CAMERON ESPOSITO: If I had to give a percentage of change, I’d put it at around 100% different. I don’t regularly have slurs yelled at me on stage and I rarely get asked if women can be funny so yeah, a world of difference.
You can read the rest of this fascinating interview with Cameron Esposito in the September issue of DIVA, available to buy in print or digitally here.
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