Comedian Josh Blue says new show Speechless isn't 'delicate' about disability
Think of the last time you saw a Hollywood movie or TV show with a disabled character.
Now ask if that disabled character was played by an actor who has a disability.
Chances are, they weren't. With a few notable exceptions, when characters with disabilities do show up in Hollywood they're often played by able-bodied actors. That can make life difficult for actors with disabilities, stand-up comedian Josh Blue tells The Current's guest host Ing Wong-Ward.
"As an actor, I know that I'm not going to be stealing any able-bodied roles from any able-bodied people."
That's one of the things that makes the new American sitcom Speechless remarkable: the character JJ, who has cerebral palsy, is actually played by a person with a disability.
"It's giving us a voice," says Blue, who has been enlisted to promote the show. That's something Blue has sought to do himself in his stand-up comedy routines, in which he often tries to educate audiences about living with cerebral palsy with a sense of humour.
"I was walking down the street the other day and someone comes up [to me saying] 'it's just so inspirational that you are out,'" he tells Wong-Ward.
"I'm like, 'I'm on my way to the liquor store. Is that inspirational?'"
"I want you to leave my show with a different perspective of disability."
Listen to the full conversation at the top of this web post.
This segment was produced by The Current's Shannon Higgins.