Conservative comedy has always been thin on the ground, but it’s been particularly fallow during the Trump era. When Greg Gutfield is your side’s leading comic mind, you know you’re in trouble. Even so, few, surely, were expecting the failed joke one right-wing radio host made on Friday, which involved Jeffrey Epstein and…well, just see for yourself.
Jesse Kelly, who started hosting the Houston-based The Jesse Kelly Show only in late June, decided to weigh in on a current popular meme, in which people joke about their fall plans being destroyed by the Delta variant. It’s a therapeutic way for people to deal with a possibly escalating surge on the horizon, although medical experts don’t expect it to be anywhere as bad as what happened last autumn. There have been lots of good ones, a lot of them involving movies and TV. And then there’s Kelly’s. In the “my fall plans” category, he put a picture of Jeffrey Epstein. In the “Delta variant” one, he put Hillary Clinton.
Kelly probably meant to invoke a conspiracy theory that has the former presidential candidate having Epstein, the financier and convicted sex offender, whacked. (He allegedly hung himself in his jail cell, prompting much, oft-wild speculation.) But most people didn’t really think about that. They thought about the part where he seemed to identify himself with a man convicted of sex trafficking minors — and at a time when a number of people in his party, most notoriously Matt Gaetz, are being investigated over similar allegations.
And so, in trying to contribute to a meme, Kelly himself was ratioed. Many asked what on earth he was planning this fall.
Why were you planning to be Jeffrey Epstein this fall?
— Frank Luntz (@FrankLuntz) August 13, 2021
Some were almost impressed with Kelly’s epic comedy fail.
Others, however, weren’t surprised.
And some argued there wasn’t actually a joke.
Anyway, jokes! They’re not actually that hard to make.