Louis—I’ll call him Louis, because I can’t keep typing C.K.—is America’s current masturbator in chief and our most topsy-turvy moralist. “You can figure out how bad a person you are by how soon after September 11 you masturbated,” he riffs. “For me, it was between the two buildings’ going down.” Louis used to be a comic’s comic—hip, the toast of his more successful peers—but now he belongs to the nation. His comedy special Hilarious was nominated for two Emmys last year, and the resulting album won a Grammy. His subsequent special, Live at the Beacon Theater, which he financed, directed, and then distributed online, cleared sales of $1 million within 10 days of its December release. Louis used to write for Dana Carvey, Conan O’Brien, Chris Rock; now he is writer/director/star of his own fever-dream semiautobiographical sitcom,Louie, also nominated for two Emmys last year and soon to begin its third season on FX.
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