Gabriel Iglesias Counts the Times He Was Almost Canceled in His New Netflix Special
Kangol flat caps off to Fluffy for pulling off what is a massively impressive feat -- selling out cavernous Dodger Stadium, then dropping the resulting Gabriel Iglesias: Stadium Fluffy (a nearly two-hour-long concert!) on Netflix this week. “This is not the greatest moment of my career,” he told spirited fans. “This is the greatest moment of my life. And if I die tomorrow, I’ve done everything I’ve ever wanted to do and then some.”
Here’s hoping Iglesias is still around tomorrow and for many tomorrows after that. But as for his career? Fluffy is clearly worried about his professional future. Stadium Fluffy features not one, not three, but five separate bits about his fear of being canceled. Why is one of the planet’s most beloved comics so afraid of having his funny card revoked? Let’s count down the threats to one man’s comedy livelihood.
He stood up for Speedy Gonzales.During the pandemic, Fluffy was fortunate to find some movie work, voicing the iconic Mexican mouse in LeBron James’s Space Jam: A New Legacy. Ironically, he notes, they hired the slowest Mexican to play the fastest. There’s nothing that can stop that mouse from getting the cheese that pleases -- nothing, that is, except cancel culture!
“Two weeks after I get this part,” he laments, “I find out that they’re trying to cancel Speedy Gonzales.” Sure, Pepé Le Pew he can understand -- that skunk’s a little gropey. But Speedy? He’s Mexican and he’s fast, neither of which is a crime. In some neighborhoods, it’s job security. So Iglesias took to Twitter to defend Speedy (and his paycheck).
Little did Iglesias know that every major news outlet, including Fox News, would pick up the tweet in their stories on cancel culture. Freaky. The good news is Speedy made it to the movie, but Fluffy is still on guard. “I know I’m going to have to defend Speedy Gonzales again at some point,” he says, “because unfortunately, that’s how cancel culture works.”
Extortionists tried to cancel him.Times are so treacherous for Fluffy that even complete strangers are trying to destroy his career with scandal. The threat came to his manager, claiming there was video footage of Iglesias being “inappropriate” with models. The unidentified caller gave the comic until 9 a.m. to make a $50,000 deposit into an anonymous account. No cash? Then the footage would be released to TMZ and Fluffy’s career would be over!
Iglesias didn’t get the message until after the deadline had passed, but no worries--the footage didn’t exist. Still, that didn’t stop him from being offended at the threat. Only $50,000? When Kevin Hart received a blackmail attempt from the same guys, they asked for $10 million. That showed Fluffy where he ranked on “the comedy totem pole of success.”
He tagged Chick-Fil-A.
“I almost got canceled,” says the dumbfounded comic, repeating the phrase for emphasis, “because I posted a tweet of one of my dogs.”
See the problem here? Iglesias tagged a fast-food chain that’s notorious in some circles for its anti-gay corporate attitude. Cue the Twitter storm: “You’re stupid. You’re horrible. How could you?”
Iglesias was clueless about what he’d done wrong. “The problem with cancel culture is that they only attack, they don’t educate.” Soon enough, someone filled him in, which left Fluffy in a conundrum. On the one hand, he considers himself an LGBTQ+ ally. But with a million struggles in this world, how is a comedian supposed to be educated on all of them? “It’s impossible to keep up with everyone’s fight” but he’ll do his best.
And on the other hand? He’s still going to tag Chick-Fil-A in his posts, mainly because his cause is that he likes free sh*t. One time, he tagged Chipotle in a post and got a year’s worth of free burritos. So yeah, he’s a supporter and doesn’t want to be canceled. But he’s still going for those free nuggets.
Old comedy specials could haunt him.
How does Fluffy sleep at night? After all, “I know that based on today’s rules, I can be canceled right now for previous comedy specials that I’ve done over the years.” What can Iglesias do but simply wait for that call letting him know he’s finished?
Well, we suppose he could just apologize, but no. Iglesias would never say he was sorry for his previous work because “it was perfectly acceptable at the time.” Now he would say things differently. But apologize for the past? No way, buster.
Did you know Fluffy was *thisclose* to emceeing the Oscars in 2019? There was an opening because Kevin Hart, who had been announced as host, had offensive tweets from a decade earlier resurface. Oscar brass asked Hart to apologize and he refused, protesting that he’d already done so ten years ago and wasn’t about to do it twice.
Does that sound like a weird line to draw in the sand? Not to Iglesias, because apologizing gives power to cancel culture! “We can’t give them more,” he says defiantly, “we gotta take it back.”
He’s about to cancel himself (before the video finds its way to the Internet)
“There are things about me that you don’t know that you’re going to find out sooner than later,” Iglesias warns. So why not follow his lawyer’s advice and get ahead of it?
We’ll let you watch the special to hear the sordid details that Iglesias shares. It’s a story that happened a long time ago, he confides, but “based on today’s rules, that’s what’s concerning me.” Spoiler alert, here’s the scandalous ending: One time, he got drunk on stage and took off all his clothes. And he’s pretty sure there’s video out there that will find its way to the Internet one day.
It’s a funny story, but come on, really? When have naked pictures of celebrities ever resulted in cancellation? If anything, those blurry shots of Fluffy’s bare backside would blow up Twitter for twenty minutes until Elon Musk whispered something salacious about Amber Heard and we’d never think about them again.
Based on the 45,000 thousand screaming faithful at Dodger Stadium (Iglesias actually sold out the joint for two nights in a row), Fluffy fans are not abandoning the comic anytime soon, certainly not based on the “transgressions” that worry him so much during Stadium Fluffy. Enjoy the ride, Gabriel! “They” are not coming for you. It’s scary to imagine losing success, but it’s almost as bad to not savor it while it’s here.
Top image: Netflix