Pamela Adlon on 'Better Things' Without Louis C.K. After "Devastating" Allegations

Pamela Adlon Louis C.K. - H 2015
Photo by Frank Micelotta/Invision for Academy of Television Arts & Sciences/AP Images

The creator and star of the FX comedy opened up in a new interview about C.K.'s sexual misconduct scandal and subsequent firing from their series.

Pamela Adlon opened up in a new interview with Vanity Fair about the sexual misconduct allegations made against her former Better Things collaborator Louis C.K. in the fall of 2017 amid the #MeToo movement.

In response to the multiple accusations made against C.K. in a New York Times report, FX cut ties with the comedian — meaning Adlon was left to continue the show without her co-creator and executive producer.

"All of a sudden, he’s gone, my show is dangling from a precipice. It was so huge. And it was so devastating," Adlon, who created, directs and stars in the critically beloved comedy, told the publication. She added that there was "an extraordinary amount of people who were affected" by the claims made against C.K.

Better Things, which returns in February, was renewed for a third season in mid-October, and the C.K. allegations were published in the Times on Nov. 9. FX cut ties the next day.

When working on the forthcoming third season in the wake of C.K.'s exit, Adlon says she made an effort to turn the Better Things writers room into a "sacred space" where her four scribes felt safe.

"I’ve never been in a writers room, let alone run a writers room … Sitting down, meeting writers, reading their stuff — how do you do this? Is this person going to get along with this person? It’s like making a table at a fucking Bar Mitzvah," she said. "My mind was being cracked open every day in a new way."

When the women first came forward with the C.K. allegations, Adlon issued a statement saying she was "devastated and in shock after the admission of abhorrent behavior" by her friend and partner. Before Better Things, Adlon and C.K. worked together when she played his wife on his HBO series Lucky Louie, and she appeared on his FX series Louie. At the time, she said, in part, "I feel deep sorrow and empathy for the women who have come forward."

Adlon also fired the manager she shared with C.K., Dave Becky, an executive producer on Better Things, who was accused in the Times report of keeping the accusations under wraps. 

C.K. was accused by five women of masturbating in front of them in the Times' story, written by one of the journalists who wrote the first exposé on sexual misconduct allegations against Harvey Weinstein. C.K. later admitted to the allegations, and his relationship with FX, among other creative relationships, was severed.

The comic made an appearance at New York's Comedy Cellar in February 2018, but C.K. was largely shunned by comedy clubs after the allegations made headlines. However, he was given more chances toward the second half of the year. His attempt at a comeback included multiple sets at the Comedy Cellar in late summer and one at the West Side Comedy Club in October.

C.K. recently ignited more controversy in December when, in leaked audio from a stand-up set reportedly performed at Long Island's Governor's Comedy Club, he mocked survivors of the Parkland High School shooting and those who identify as gender nonbinary.

Read Adlon's interview with Vanity Fair here.