Chelsea Wants to Woke Her Way Back into Late Night

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Remember Chelsea Handler? 

The blonde comic rose to fame by leaning into her screwball persona. She drank too much, chronicled in tomes like, “Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea.” She talked trash about fellow celebrities and bragged about her sexual appetites.

She put all of the above on display on her hit E! late night show, “Chelsea Lately,” which ran from 2007 to 2014.

That Handler is long gone.

The new, aggressively woke model is more activist than comic. She leaned into Chelsea Handler 2.0 via her brief Netflix series, “Chelsea.” She allegedly quit to become a full-time activist, sticking with the platform for one-off specials like 2019’s “Hello, Privilege. It’s Me, Chelsea.”

Now, she wants her old gig back.

Handler made a public plea to rejoin the late-night ranks via the liberal Variety. The far-Left entertainer dipped her toe back into the comedy waters by guest hosting “Jimmy Kimmel Live.”

Now, she’s threatening a full-time return to the talk show wars, and she’s not ashamed of playing the gender card to make it happen. Late night TV is still too male for her tastes, and she can help change that.

“I have, obviously, very strong and loud opinions and I like to share them … especially during a time like this, it’s nice for a lot of people to have a female voice out there.”

Chelsea Handler

Platforms must hire her because she’s a woman, not that she’s a hilarious voice that demands a hearing. She understands corporations operate out of fear in the 21st century, making her plea a subtle threat. 

“I feel like this is a time … where it’s so important to be represented and to be representing women and to remind people why it’s so important to be loud and to be strong and to be indefatigable about it and to get up and say something. It gives a lot of people comfort when they have somebody speaking for them — you know, not just a white guy, who I’m sure is on our side, but it’s just different.

Chelsea Handler

Is it?

Yes, Handler would be one of the few female hosts in late night TV, but she’d regurgitate the same progressive talking points as Colbert and co. deliver each night.


We already have two prominent women in late night today. Consider TBS’s “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee.” The long-running show features one of the more aggressive, nakedly political hosts. 

And Bee can’t draw a crowd. 

Her show ranks consistently at the bottom of the late-night pile according to Clearly, it takes more than the “right” gender to bring eyeballs to a platform.

A more recent late-night entry is “Ziwe,” Showtime’s uber-woke entry. The star explores privilege, Identity Politics and other hard-Left subjects.  With episode titles like “Gay Pride!” and “Empowerment,” it’s clear Ziwe sings from the same progressive hymnal as her male co-stars.

Another female-led show, “A Little Late with Lilly Singh,” lasted just two seasons.

And then there’s the other side of Handler’s late-night plea. Her past is, shall we say, problematic.

She once railed against so-called racist humor, suggesting jail time is the right punishment for those who find that brand of humor funny. Yet a quick look at Handler’s body of work shows she trafficked in similar material before her woke awakening.

She also got blasted by South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham for Tweets many deemed homophobic.

“If you’re wondering why Republicans took a sick day today, it’s probably because it’s #NationalComingOutDay. Looking at you @LindseyGrahamSC.”

“Hey, @LindseyGrahamSC what kind of d*** sucking video do they have on you for you 2 be acting like this? Wouldn’t coming out be more honorable?”

Chelsea Handler Tweets

Not woke at all. And these were sent in 2018 after Handler’s woke awakening.

Perhaps Handler’s celebrated “white privilege” requires more intensive scrutiny before she rejoins the late night ranks.

Written by Christian Toto

Christian Toto is an award-winning film critic, journalist and founder of, the Right Take on Entertainment. He’s the author of “Virtue Bombs: How Hollywood Got Woke and Lost Its Soul” and a lifelong Yankees fan. Toto lives in Denver, Colorado with his wife, two sons and too many chickens.

Follow Christian on Twitter at


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