Veteran digital creator Tana Mongeau and Brooke Schofield had controversial comedian Matt Rife on their “Cancelled” podcast several months ago. In the time passed since, Rife has fallen to mass public criticism following a number of disparaging remarks made about women in his Netflix special “Natural Selection.” The jokes made included a punchline regarding domestic violence, making fun of women’s interest in astrology, and more.
After initially defending Rife and insinuating that his perceived toxic masculinity was all an act, Schofield set the record straight this week. The digital creator and host confirmed that she had a personal romantic relationship with Rife earlier this year, though it was never defined as serious. She explained that after speaking on the phone frequently, going on dinner dates, and meeting up with him at a number of his comedy shows, Rife, who was her next door neighbor at the time, began strangely avoiding her whenever he returned to Los Angeles between tour dates. After asking Rife about his intentions, Schofield alleges that he told her he “did not have the energy” for a relationship.
Schofield alleged that Rife love bombed her and lied about his intentions from the start, as he began dating his now girlfriend, Jessica Lord, shortly after they ended their brief relationship. The host moved past the situation, until another woman reached out to her this month to reveal that Rife had allegedly been seeing both of them at the same time, along with a number of other women. The women have since created a group chat to piece together their experiences with the comedian, who allegedly lied to all of them about his intentions with them.
Outside of the alleged dishonesty and potential infidelity, Schofield revealed that she felt personally insulted by Rife’s appearance on another podcast months earlier. Prior to the series of controversial jokes made in the special, the comedian appeared as a guest on the “Stiff Socks” podcast, here he discussed his type in women. He went into minute physical detail, and insulted female anatomy that he claimed was not up to par with his standards.
Mongeau and Schofield made the decision to address the situation after a clip of the once TikTok favorite comic on “Cancelled” resurfaced, with viewers now taking it into new consideration in light of the latest string of controversies attached to Rife.
In the clip, Rife says that he had an “epiphany” that all of his “haters” and critics are simply jealous of him. He justifies this school of thought by elaborating that he once felt the same towards some people he felt were in a better place in their respective lives than he was. Mongeau appears surprised by this bold claim, and goes on to point out the perceived fallacy of his argument by asking him if all of Osama Bin Laden’s critics are jealous of him. Bin Laden founded the terrorist organization al Qaeda, who committed the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, and several others. His role in the organization lead to his execution in 2011. Rife then responds an emphatic, “yes,” to Mongeau’s point, joking that “everyone wants to be the guy with the button,” shocking audiences.
crying over Matt Rife on Tana’s podcast looking like an idiot pic.twitter.com/HErfKKv12p
— krista! 🎨🔗 in bio 🏻 (@gardeningbabe) November 25, 2023
The podcast episode resurfaced first due to the controversial Netflix episode, and in part Rife’s frequently harsh snaps at his critics. Instead of apologizing following the mass backlash he continues to receive, Rife posted an Instagram story that appeared to insult people with disabilities.
The comedian posted a photo of himself from the special, captioned “if you’ve ever been offended by a joke I’ve told–here’s a link to my official apology.” The link, labeled “tap to solve your issue”, redirects Instagram users to a listing for “special needs” helmets. This was intended to insinuate that any of his critics must have something wrong with them, and also an insult to those living with disabilities. The term “special needs” has been widely condemned by disability rights activists in recent years, and is often perceived to be offensive.
Rife is yet to seriously acknowledge the widespread backlash he continues to receive for “Natural Selection,” instead opting to leave a series of comments on a number of digital creator’s social media pages, from plastic surgeons to six-year-old outer space aficionados and exes in between.