The actress and comic, 48, sat down with friend and fellow filmmaker Mike Birbiglia for a talk on Monday night during the Tribeca Film Festival and touched upon a number of topics including her storied career path.
Silverman admitted that her comedy has changed over the years and that's because of her own personal growth and the changing dynamics of our culture and society. She said she's had to rethink using the term, “That’s so gay” to describe something.
The defense of "I'm from Boston" wasn't a realistic one and when she heard herself defending the use of the phrase, she realized why it was wrong altogether.
Silverman acknowledged that "comedy is absolutely not evergreen" and a comedian needs to move on from certain jokes that are now unacceptable. "That’s the beauty and the horror of comedy, mixed with the beauty and the horror of social media," she added.
“I don’t stand behind a lot of comedy I did in the beginning. I haven’t see 'Jesus is Magic' in 10 years. I would call it very problematic,” she said. “I can only accept myself and know that I change. I have done things in comedy I wouldn’t do today.”
She also discussed whether or not it's fair that comedians have jokes or tweets drudged up from the past. “If we’re for progress, being ‘progressive’ means that you change with all the new information that you get,” Silverman said.
“You let yourself be changed. To be progressive, and yet to still hold people accountable for something from another time that they’ve changed from, it makes me wonder. I have to ask myself, as I draw lines in the sand on social media, do I want this person to be changed? Or do I secretly want them to not be changed so I can point to them as wrong and myself as right? There’s a kind of pornography in that. I think it’s a kind of righteousness porn," she continued.
Later on in the talk, Silverman also gave her thoughts about President Trump and his base. "What Trump is great at is giving [angry people] something to blame, which is others. Or ‘the other,’” she said. “I see a big difference between the liars and the lied to.”
But she has absolutely no plans of running for office one day. “I think I’ve had too much therapy and I’m not being president,” she joked. “I have too many skeletons in my closet… I’m an exhibitionist. I want everyone to know everything.”
Plus, she's too busy right now adapting her 2010 memoir, "The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption, and Pee," into a musical. Silverman confessed it will premiere Off-Broadway sometime next year at The Atlantic Theatre Company in New York.
She's working with Adam Schlesinger on the songs and Joshua Harmon on the book.