For what was a much-anticipated event, Dan Bilzerian going on Doug Polk’s podcast proved somewhat anticlimactic. Polk has mocked Bilzerian in a few videos and questioned his manliness openly online.
Bilzerian is famously thin-skinned and prone to pseudo-masculine posturing and has suggested on Twitter that Polk is an overrated player.
So viewers were expecting fireworks. Instead, they got damp squibs.
Bilzerian comes out of the gate hard with accusations about the journalistic integrity of Polk’s comedic montage. But, after that, the majority of the two-and-a-half-hour interview involved Bilzerian trying to sell his story of poker success and Polk flat out refusing to buy it.
Like many people who relied on their parents for a leg up in life, Bilzerian seems heavily invested in being seen as a self-made man. A position that frequently pushed his discourse with Polk into the realm of the absurd.
“If my father gave me money there would be wire transfers,” he says at one point. Naturally, Polk doesn’t buy that the son of Paul Bilzerian is unaware that money laundering exists so the pair talk past each other about that for a little while about that.
After nearly an hour of back and forth in which Polk tries for clarity and Bilzerian dodges it, a merciful ad for CoinFLEX breaks the conversation up.
Questions from the viewer
When the podcast resumes, Polk asks a few viewer-questions. This is the section of the podcast is where the conversation livens up a bit for the audience.
Bilzerian is a little less cautious and defensive as he talks about throwing Janice Griffith off a roof though neither Polk nor Bilzerian seems to be able to remember her name.
That brings Polk to the more vexed question of Bilzerian’s spat with Vanessa Kade. Polk struggles to hit the feminist talking points, giving Bilzerian room to talk his way out of engaging with the difficult issues.
When asked directly about his long history of misogyny, Bilzerian’s response is to ask how he can hate women when he surrounds himself with them.
“It’s like saying Lewis Hamilton hates F1 cars,” Bilzerian says without a hint of irony in his voice.
There is a human moment when Polk asks if the Instagram personality is an act.
For a short spell, Bilzerian admits his Instagram is largely a construct he designed at first to “get laid with less effort” and to avenge himself on an ex. He talks about his father, the hurt he felt when he failed out of Navy SEAL training, and the embarrassment of Vegas shooter incident. One almost feels sorry for someone who’s clearly trying to handle his early traumas without much success.
Then he says, “I’ve always been a humble guy,” Polk laughs, the topic changes again, and the brittle attention hound puts his snout back to the forest floor.
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