Netflix has removed four shows by Australian comedian Chris Lilley from its service, after years of criticism against Lilley for his portrayal of black and brown characters.
Angry Boys, Summer Heights High, Jonah from Tonga and We Can Be Heroes have all been quietly taken down from the streaming platform’s Australian and New Zealand libraries, Deadline reports.
Angry Boys sees Lilley use blackface to portray S.Mouse, an African-American rapper, and repeatedly use the n-word. In Summer Heights High and Jonah from Tonga, Lilley played Tongan schoolboy Jonah Takalua, using brown makeup for the role, arguably his most well-known. Finally, in We Can Be Heroes Lilley portrayed Chinese physics student Ricky Wong.
In 2017, Lilley drew criticism after the actor posted an old music clip from Angry Boys in which he, as his S.Mouse character, performs a song titled ‘Squashed N—a’ to his Instagram account. That was just days after the verdict was handed down regarding the death of Indigenous teenager Elijah Doughty in Western Australia. The then 56-year-old man, who ran over and killed Doughty after pursuing him in a ute, was acquitted of manslaughter.
Netflix has declined to publicly comment on their decision to remove the shows as of yet. Lilley’s shows Ja’mie: Private School Girl and Lunatics remain on the service.