We Heart: Amy Poehler’s Hollywood Reporter Reality-Check

When The Hollywood Reporter asked comedian Amy Poehler a lighthearted series of questions as part of their “40-ish Most Powerful People in Comedy,” she didn’t respond in kind.

When asked about her guilty pleasure, she replied: “Let’s not forget over 4,600 people have died in Puerto Rico.” Poehler pointed out the ecological consequences of pollution when she referenced the death of a giant whale in Thailand who recently swallowed more than 80 plastic bags after being asked about her “dream product endorsement.” She drew attention to the devastating frequency of gun violence in the U.S. when asked about college comedy audiences. (Her exasperated response to a question about her most memorable heckler? “Who cares? The whole world is on fire.”)

Poehler’s serious responses stressed her impatience with the triviality of the interview during such a catastrophic moment in the world—and it isn’t her first time resisting such thoughtless questions. In an appearance with Tina Fey on Late Night with Seth Meyers in 2016, Poehler discussed the sexist nature of questions directed towards female comedians, such as those that ask what they fight about. She also pointed out the obliviousness of a male reporter who asked her how men should deal with the new pressures placed on them to excel at different identities, which she pointed out is a burden “women face everyday.”

Rachel Dratch called Poehler’s replies “genius,” and a plethora of others have voiced their praise on Twitter for her subversive responses. Count us in with the crowd who can’t get enough of the feminist comedian’s persistence—and insistence on focusing on what really matters.


Anna Lipton is a former editorial intern at Ms. and a student at Occidental College majoring in Sociology with a minor in Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies. She enjoys watching reality TV and eating guac, usually but not always together.