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George Lopez returned to stand-up with his Netflix comedy special We’ll Do It for Half released on June 30.
In the special — Lopez’s first for Netflix, having previously worked with HBO — the 59-year-old comedian is in fighting form and takes on the pressing issues facing the Latino community during the Trump era, including immigration, the brutality of ICE and the border wall.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Lopez explained how he came up with the title of the show, a phrase that has a special significance for the Latino community, revealing that he decided on using the title after his own joke-gone-bad controversy that led to a run-in with the Secret Service.
In January, Lopez responded to an Instagram post that erroneously claimed Iran had offered an $80 million bounty on President Trump as revenge for the assassination of an Iranian general with the words, “We’ll do it for half.” Soon enough, conservatives were looking to the FBI to investigate Lopez for making a threat on the president’s life, and the hashtag #ArrestGeorgeLopez began to trend on Twitter.
“‘We’ll do it for half’ actually got me a visit from the United States Secret Service because there was a story at the end of last year that I offered a bounty on a leader of the United States, uh, wink, wink,” Lopez says. “It tells you [something] that in a political climate like this, where our nerves are at the end and everybody’s looking for any excuse to attack people, that that title, that in itself, created such a flurry of anger and hate and a visit from the Secret Service.”
On his return to stand-up, Lopez admits he didn’t miss it as such, but his love for it never went away. “Being able to find those things in myself is the reason that at 59, I still love doing stand-up. I haven’t missed it, but I still love doing it,” he said.
As America continues to grapple with issues of race and representation, Lopez said specials like his are important for the Latino community. “The ability to see someone that looks like you goes a long way. When I was growing up, I was a fan of Richard Pryor, I was a fan of George Carlin, [I was a fan] of a lot of comedians who didn’t look like me, that weren’t even Latinos,” he says, adding that being on Netflix “will turn some people onto me for the first time. It will be seen by more people, I think more than all of my other specials combined. And if it does anything for Latinos, it should ignite you.”
Amongst the topics discussed in his special, Lopez ponders the possibility of a Latino candidate for president. When asked about who he thought could be president Lopez joked that given conservatives questioned President Barack Obama’s birth certificate, claiming he was born in Kenya, perhaps the U.S. could draft in Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim. “You know, if [Slim] needed a birth certificate, I know some guys not very far from here, in McArthur Park, where you can get the proper documentation.”
Watch the video above for more.