Comedian Dave Chappelle is taking a serious tone in his new Netflix segment, "8:46," opening up about the death of George Floyd in police custody.
The title of the set, which aired on Netflix's YouTube comedy hub, "Netflix Is A Joke," for free viewing on Thursday, is a reference to Floyd's death, in which former police officer Derek Chauvin kneeled on Floyd's neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds.
"It's hard to figure out what to say about George Floyd," he said after his opening remarks, eventually launching into a dialogue focused on his death and the public discourse, taking the time to slam conservative television host Laura Ingraham and political commentator Candace Owens for commentary related to race in America, Floyd's death and ongoing protests.
"What are you signifying that you can kneel on a man's neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds and feel like you wouldn't get the wrath of God?" Chappelle asked. "That's what is happening right now. It's not for a single cop, it's for all of it."
Chappelle delved into police brutality, referencing Eric Garner, who died in a chokehold by police officer David Pantaleo in Staten Island in 2014; Michael Brown, who was shot and killed by a police officer Darren Wilson at age 18 in Ferguson in 2014; and Philando Castile, who was shot multiple times and killed by police officer Jeronimo Yanez during a traffic stop in Minnesota in 2016.
"This is not funny at all," he said.
He remained quiet before, he noted, and was frustrated hearing CNN's Don Lemon, "that hot bed of reality," wonder aloud where celebrities were with commentary.
"Has anyone ever listened to me do comedy? Have I not ever said anything about these things before?" he said. "Expects me to step in front of the streets and talk over the work these people are doing?"
Chappelle maintained in the segment that he doesn't think now was the time for celebrities to take the limelight and step in- something he pointed out multiple times.
Lemon reacted Friday morning on CNN's New Day to Chappelle calling him out in his set.
"Dave Chappelle is my favorite comedian and I do care what Dave Chappelle says," said Lemon. "I actually agree with Dave Chappelle, I think the establishment has been a bit behind."
Lemon continued that he considers himself to be part of "the establishment" and thinks that speaking out is about showing support to the people who are in the streets and are protesting.
"I do think that this is a moment, not a moment for modesty, I think this is a moment we should all be using our platform to do whatever we can," said Lemon.
Chappelle wanted to make sure the audience understood that his former silence on the matter was not complicity: "This is the streets talking for themselves, they don't need me right now.
"Shout out all the young people who have had the courage to go out and do all this amazing work, protesting, I am very proud of you," he said. "You kids are excellent drivers, I am comfortable in the back seat of the car, so carry on young ones."
Chappelle described the 27-minute clip as the "first concert" in North America – apart from drive-in shows by other comedians.
USA TODAY has reached out to Chappelle's rep for comment.
Viewers took to Twitter share their thoughts on the special.
"Wow. This was brilliant, powerful, incredible," singer, songwriter Scarlett Rabe, replied to Netflix Is A Joke's tweet sharing the special.
"Dave Chappelle is the greatest comedian of my lifetime," Twitter user @KimKSidePiece wrote, "The man just did a standup routine & didn't crack one joke & still got a standing ovation. The power of his words is beyond any comedian I've ever seen. Ppl care what he has to say bc he's so important to the culture. Goat."
And while Chappelle might believe that the people are speaking for themselves, people were grateful that he spoke out anyway.
"He spends 27 minutes telling us we don't need to hear from him, but my soul needed those 27 mins," Twitter user @jacquisneal, wrote. "We may not need him. But I'm glad he's here."
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Netflix: Dave Chappelle talks George Floyd death in '8:46' special