They toured together in August 2015, both headlining the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival. And, in October the same year, they spent a weekend relaxing alongside actors Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt in Atlanta, Georgia. There were social media videos of pranks and drinking and walking a dog around town.
Schumer, 36, is a fierce feminist who has spoken publicly about being raped herself.
How was she going to reconcile the Ansari in that Babe.net article – someone who allegedly did not listen when his date asked to slow down – with Ansari the comedian? The feminist funny guy we all know – and Schumer knows best?
The account of Ansari’s alleged behaviour was divisive, some calling the incident “bad sex”, others “sexual assault”.
LISTEN: The Mamamia Out Loud team discuss Babe’s Aziz Ansari article, and the explosion that followed. Post continues.
Now, Schumer says she’s not going to defend her friend against the allegations.
“[Aziz has] been my friend, and I really feel for the woman,” she told Katie Couric’s namesake podcast, which dropped today, Los Angeles Times reports.
“I identify with all the women in these situations. Even if it’s my friend, I don’t go, ‘Oh, but he’s a good guy’. I think, ‘What would it feel like to have been her?'”
She says the broader conversation should move past rape. That there are many cases where a woman feels like she has to have sex with a man because it would be too uncomfortable to say ‘no’. And oh, we’ve all been there.
"At a younger age, especially in college, I feel like that was a quarter of my hookups. [Men] see what they can get out of you," she said.
"That nature of wearing you down into, or being in, an uncomfortable situation and being like, 'Ugh, well, I got myself here, so now I have to have sex with this guy to get out of here'."
But you can leave without having sex, Schumer tells Couric.
"If you have a doctor that makes you uncomfortable, or you get a massage, or you have a date with someone and they coerce you in a situation like the Aziz one, I don’t think there’s any sort of criminal charge, but I think that it’s good for everybody to learn that that behaviour’s not acceptable," Schumer said.
"I think it’s about showing women that this behaviour is not okay. Not only can you leave, but you need to leave. Because then the women who come after you — you’re leaving a mark for them too."
Ansari too, has responded to the allegations saying he was "surprised and concerned" at the woman's account.
"Everything did seem okay to me, so when I heard that it was not the case for her, I was surprised and concerned," his statement read, according to Vox. "I took her words to heart and responded privately after taking the time to process what she had said."