This time last year, Mo’Nique received a ton of backlash from the Black community after she called for a boycott of Netflix, and now she’s flying high for being the first Black comedienne to have a Las Vegas residency. She just finished up the gig on Jan. 20.
The boycott came after the comic said the streaming company offered her $500,000 to do a comedy special, which she found insulting since Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle were paid $20 million each. Plus, Amy Schumer was offered $11 million for her special, according to Deadline.
While plenty of people supported Mo’Nique’s cause, many believed she was using the important issues of racism and sexism to handle a personal dispute.
Some of her fellow comedians like Tiffany Haddish and Kim Whitley blasted Mo’Nique as well and said she should’ve been rallying against issues like police brutality instead of a lowball offer.
During an interview with Essence, Mo’Nique talked about the Vegas residency, which was at SLS Hotel’s Sayers Club, and how she doesn’t consider it revenge against the people who criticized her.
“It doesn’t feel like revenge because I’m not out to get anyone,” she explained. “This is a part of what I do. I never stopped. Because people didn’t see me, they thought I had stopped, but I’ve never stopped being a stand-up comedian. Through all of this, I was still traveling the country, going to this city, this city, this city, this city because that’s my passion. That’s my baby. That’s my love.”
The Maryland native also said the residency felt like confirmation that her resilience and willingness to keep working during the backlash paid off.
“When the residency came, my husband and [comedy club owner] Tommy Thomas, they worked out the deal,” Mo’Nique detailed. “It just felt right because the universe was saying, ‘See, baby? You kept going. We were just getting you ready.’”
And as far as regret over the boycott, Mo’Nique said she doesn’t have any, mainly because she’s willing to sacrifice some of her reputation to help the Black female comedians of tomorrow.
On top of that, the 51-year-old said she wants to break the pattern of Black women being OK with being treated unfairly in business.
“We get fearful of losing out, so we just keep accepting,” she stated. “When people say, ‘Mo’Nique, what’s wrong with you? Don’t you know what’s going to happen?’ Well, baby, I’m going to have to deal with that, but hopefully the little girl who’s not here yet, she won’t. If I don’t do my part, then the ones that came before me will look at me like, ‘What [are] you doing? You know the a-s whuppings we took for you?’”