The Death of Comedy – Not Funny…editor
A JOKE may be a small thing, but it is the most reliable indicator of liberty. There are no jokes in Islam, Ayatollah Khomeini sternly warned. Well, there are fewer jokes outside Islam now too. In virtually every aspect of our lives, areas which should be ripe for ridicule are increasingly fenced off and forbidden.
Comedy in this country is in precipitous decline. From stand-up to panel shows to TV sitcoms, all have become unwatchable buckets of bile, lecturing anyone who doesn’t share the cosy, liberal assumptions of polite society. Comedy used to recognise that you have to be able to see the humour in both sides: you cannot take the mick out of one half of the debate but never the other or you just look like a partisan hack.
Humour, ultimately, is about recognition, and the world portrayed in mainstream comedy-land today is not something most Britons recognise in the slightest. You are sorely mistaken if you believe the woke, white-guilt riddled hipsters they bus in to fill the audiences for these ‘comedy’ panel shows are representative of those watching at home.
For starters, herd-minded twenty-somethings don’t watch terrestrial TV, not any more. Bizarrely, the butts of their jokes tend to be the few remaining people still watching their vile output, the baby boomers. Which is perhaps the reason they’ve switched off in their millions over recent years.
It’s tragically ironic that these ‘comedians’ who infest the mainstream comedy circuit think that by making anti-Brexit, anti-Trump and anti-British jokes they are being daring and subversive, rebellious even. In reality, far from being anti-establishment, they embody the establishment, guffawing at the ignorant commoners like some kind of 18th century French aristocrat.
The simple truth is it takes infinitely more bravery to make a joke about Black Lives Matter than about neo-Nazis, vastly more valour to mock Islamic supremacists than white ones, far more courage to parody Greta Thunberg than Nigel Farage . . . which is why none of them does it. Though they give out awards and slap each other on the back constantly for their bravery, comedians in Britain are among the most cowardly and humourless individuals imaginable. The remarkable transformation of Frankie Boyle from a court jester, lampooning anyone who caught his eye, to a rather sad and pathetic lapdog of the woke establishment is a case in point.
For many ethnic minority comedians, the accusation of bigotry is both their offensive weapon and their defensive shield, which is why Nish Kumar can stand up in front of a British crowd during a ‘comedy’ show and declare ‘your country enslaved my ancestors’, but ask him whether he’s not British himself, and he’ll castigate you as a racist.
Independent organisations can be as biased as they like, but the BBC is obligated to be politically neutral, although regulators don’t seem to care. This was exemplified a few years ago when Jo Brand ‘joked’ on BBC Radio 4’s Heresy show, after a milkshake had been thrown at Nigel Farage by a far-left extremist: ‘I’m thinking why bother with a milkshake when you could get some battery acid?’ Naturally Ofcom, after a six-month investigation, declared she had no case to answer. One wonders what their decision would have been if the roles were reversed and Farage had ‘joked’ about throwing acid on a woman he disliked, or (God forbid) a ‘woman of colour’. I strongly suspect he would be in a prison cell to this day.
For many up-and-coming comedians, one can hardly blame them for their cowardice: they have to make a living. If they make jokes about the right, they’re rewarded with lucrative taxpayer-funded BBC contracts; if they ridicule the left, the BBC ensure they are never heard again. They are merely a product of that commercial environment.
For those with an independent platform and reputations already well established, there is no excuse. Take the fallout from the Charlie Hebdo massacre. For all his supposed bravado and bravery, what did Private Eye editor Ian Hislop do? Did he publish the images that got his fellow satirists slaughtered? Did he take up the torch of liberty and free speech? Did he hell. He slunk away like all the others and meekly submitted to the Islamic supremacists, when bravery was needed most. Notice now how he delights in ridiculing Trump and Boris and the other low-hanging fruit but never once dares to denounce the true evil in our midst.
It should be noted this phenomenon is not confined to our side of the Atlantic: arguably the downfall of American mainstream comedy has been even more profound. One need only watch Saturday Night Live or The Daily Show with Trevor Noah to appreciate just how insipid and dogmatic these programmes have become, playing more like sermons to the devout than genuine attempts at comedy.
The Daily Show in particular has mutated into an obscene, hyper-partisan, anti-Western hate machine under Noah. But even when Jon Stewart was at the helm there was a distinct blind spot when it came to anything other than mockery of conservatives. Indeed, I remember as a teenager first seeing Ayaan Hirsi Ali when she made a guest appearance to promote her book Infidel. The usually convivial Stewart became confrontational and hostile right out of the gates. He finished the interview by curling his lip and stating accusingly, ‘You’re just trying to sell your book, aren’t you?’ It was obvious what was going on. Stewart was terrified of the arguments being made and judged it was safer to vilify the person making them than address such topics head on. Safer by far.
(This was the first chink in my cloistered, middle-class armour. It didn’t change my worldview overnight, but it was the loose thread that began the total unravelling of my liberal delusion. I came to realise that beneath all the superficial compassion and morality, there is something deeply sinister and cowardly at the heart of the left-wing worldview. The kind of cowardice that drives officials to blame everything other than the ideology responsible when dozens of little girls are blown to pieces at a concert theatre, or sit on their hands while thousands upon thousands of them are systematically turned into sex slaves.)
But all is not lost. In the States, at least, we are seeing a new wave of comedians filling the vacuum. Some of the rising stars, Andrew Schulz, Bobby Lee and Andrew Santino to name a few, have made their names and fortunes not by competing for advertiser-friendly mainstream TV slots, but via the medium of long-form comedy podcasts such as The Joe Rogan Experience. Garnering audiences that mainstream platforms could only dream of. The rapid rise to fame of Theo Von epitomises just how starved the populace has become for genuinely edgy comedy, and comedians who are unafraid of lampooning the mores of woke society.
British comedians should take note. Source –TCW…Defending Freedom
Visiting some business premises this morning, I found myself repressing my sense of humour, and not for the first time. A very kind woman had held a door open for me on entering the building, and I caught myself about to quip, as I usually do in such circumstances: “Thank you – you’re a real gentleman!” I managed to stop myself in time, remembering that these days “she” just might think of herself as a gentleman 😀 Later, as I waited for my appointment time, I chatted with a couple of staff members who were discussing interior design and I said, without thinking, that I had once had so much brown in my house that I was now sick of it before scrambling, looking around, assuring them I hadn’t a racist bone in my body that I was referencing furniture and carpeting not people. Thankfully, they saw the humour and laughed, assuring me that they were not about to call the Diversity Department and have me thrown out!
So, when I saw the above article just now, it made me ponder the problem of a humourless society and what the whole “woke” movement is doing to social interaction. It is self-evident, as we’ve discussed on this blog previously, that no-one claiming to be a follower of Christ can possibly justify being “racist” – i.e. uncharitable towards others because of their race/colour – but now I’m wondering if it is possible to be a follower of Christ… without a sense of humour! Your thoughts…
The fact that you find yourself ‘checking yourself’ – concerned that you might cause offence (to the woman opening the door) or might have caused offence (speaking about your brown carpeting) speaks volumes about how we’ve all been affected by the woke brigade. I just refuse to bow to all this. If I cause offence for using innocent language and phrases that I’ve used all my life, then tough luck. And in my experience, very often, no genuine offence is caused. It’s often just an excuse used by ‘the offended person’ to wrong-foot someone they just don’t like.
I’ve had serious personal experience of that – too long a story to recount here – but I’ve seen it happen to other people as well. If one of the ‘wokerati’ doesn’t like a work colleague – maybe just because of a simple clash of personality – it’s so much more effective for their ’cause’ if they can falsely accuse the colleague of some kind of ‘ism’ or ‘phobia’ (such as racism or so-called homophobia). I’ve seen it time and time again. We should all be on guard about this, and just behave naturally, and continue to laugh at what we’ve always laughed at.
I agree. We should not make any apology for speaking as normal people do. The article in the intro is very good on this – it was a breath of fresh air.
I totally agree with your comment “If one of the ‘wokerati’ doesn’t like a work colleague etc.” I think that is so very true. It’s much easier to accuse someone of racism or one of the phobias, rather than deal with the real issue. It’s cowardly.
Another thing that angers me is the hypocrisy of the BBC. They won’t show the vintage TV comedy series ‘It Ain’t Half Hot Mum’ because they now consider it to be ‘racist and homophobic’, but yet they still make money on it by selling the DVD box sets of the same series: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Aint-Half-Hot-Mum-Collection/dp/B01GWDV3P4/ref=sr_1_2?crid=292K1SPVJM38B&keywords=it+ain%27t+half+hot+mum+box+set&qid=1683647575&sprefix=it+ain%27t+half+hot+mum%2Caps%2C166&sr=8-2 I’m sure they do this with other vintage comedies now considered ‘politically incorrect’.
It’s the same with Fawlty Towers, which is too rough round the “racist” edges, thanks to the character of Manuel, the Spanish waiter. There are some scripts of their conversations at this link, made me LOL!
Perfectly innocent fun for any normal thinking person but for the woke mob, not so much.
I agree with everyone so far – we should stop apologising and acting fearful, and this racist slur about whiteness is a step too far.
To answer your question: ” is it possible to be a follower of Christ… without a sense of humour!”, I would say no, because it’s not possible to get through this life right now without a SOH!
Reading the Introduction I don’t know of any of the so called Comedians Named. For to say the Vastly Overweight Jo Brand is a comedian is to say Joe Biden is a good Catholic. As for Boyle his name is pronounced correctly but spelt wrongly. And should be near His posterior as much as are His gutter comments.
As for watching the Rotten Garbage BBC as a whole no thanks. But unfortunately I have to pay the £164 they now steal from me and call it a TV License. The BBC are as to entertainment as is the Covid Vaccines to medicine. Both useless. As for the woke garbage I refuse to go along with all of the absolute tripe.
A Homosexual Etc to me will never be GAY . A Transgender will always be of the Sex they are born with. And last but not least in these times. Ad take President Putin over Zelensky any day of the Week.
I am intrigued by your concluding sentence because only yesterday I met a woman who said the same thing; in fact, she said she would take Trump and Putin over Biden and Zelensky any day. So, some people are awake, not just thee and me 😀
A very interesting topic! We should remind ourselves that a nation or culture whose citizens are afraid (because they will face punishment) to say certain things, possess certain books or other publications, belong to certain groups, etc. is a Communist nation. Thought control is one of the primary tools of totalitarianism.
So if you insist, even with humor, that men can’t get pregnant, that there are only two genders, that there’s no such thing as man-made global warming, that homosexuality is a mortal sin, or that the vaxx is dangerous to the point of lethal, you are immediately ostracized by an orchestrated smear campaign.
In fact, there is a variety of this thought control emerging under this disgraceful pontificate. If you state that the Novus Ordo is Protestantized garbage, if you are a priest who preaches truth from the pulpit about sinful behavior, or who distributes Communion to the faithful on the tongue and kneeling, or denies Communion to a public sinner, or turns around and celebrates Mass ad orientem, expect a call from your bishop. Or worse. It has actually been this way for many years, but it has gotten much worse since 2013.
However, it’s not just the wokerati – Catholic or secular – that are humorless and thin-skinned. Fundamentalist Protestants, I’ve found, also fit that description. Having lived in the USA “Bible Belt” for 9 years, I speak from experience. The more rigidly fundamentalist, the less their sense of humor.
A thoughtful, insightful comment from you on this, not least your experience of rigid fundamentalists types, Protestants (and allegedly traditionalist Catholics), which I share. I lost count of the disapproving murmurings from both when I quoted the wag who, at the time of Nicola Sturgeon’s resignation when asked if he would miss her, said he wouldn’t miss her if he had a clear shot. I had to point out that I would still laugh at the creative use of language if the subject were Donald Trump, but it made no difference.
Speaking of The Donald, I was appalled to see that while the jury found him not guilty of the charge for which he had been brought to court (rape) they found him guilty of sexual abuse – and I can’t help thinking that a sense of very strong humour would be required to accept that.
Is that allowed… to be charged with one crime and when/because they can’t prove it, they can find someone guilty of another crime, with which they’ve NOT been charged? Seems like a set up to me…
I had been thinking of posting a dedicated thread on that subject but perhaps not – maybe a thread about jokes is the most suitable place to discuss it, after all…
If anyone thinks this disgraceful verdict and massive financial reward to the “victim” (who looked about as much a victim as any lottery winner) deserves its own thread, say so here – otherwise, feel free to comment on this latest diabolical attack on the former President of the USA.
I should have added, in my comment at 8:17am, that I am never impressed with these women who literally cry “rape” years, sometimes decades, after the alleged event. In this latest Trump case, his accuser was almost the same age as him when the attack (in a department store!) allegedly took place, so to brand him a sexual abuser is disgraceful.
What is wrong with these women? Are they dumb, literally? If someone assaulted me in a public place, I’d be heard from here to, er… America.
Nope, to say that E. Jean Carrol is a victim of sexual assault in the 90’s, when she only came forward to make her allegation (of rape) in 2019, is a joke, and those of us with a well-developed sense of humour can see through it. Juries are not infallible. This Jury, in my opinion, is a most recent demonstration of that truth.
I do acknowledge, of course, that I wasn’t in the court, didn’t hear the “evidence” but on the face of it, this is a massive injustice against a man who has been persecuted from the minute he announced his candidature for presidency.
So much for the much-vaunted claim that anyone – no matter who, no matter status etc – can reach the highest office in the USA.
I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s being paid (by Soros et al?) to frame Trump.
All the usual suspects are out in force. Not content with recently falsely defaming the Royal Family https://www.express.co.uk/news/royal/1768052/dr-shola-queen-camilla-picture-racism-tweet Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu now wants to redefine the definition of rape, because of this case: https://twitter.com/SholaMos1/status/1656217940268572672/photo/2 WARNING: CONTAINS EXPLICIT SEXUAL CONTENT
I gave up following The Donald circus for Lent, and have not resumed. In fact, I couldn’t even tell you who won the Kentucky Derby…..how the war in Ukraine is going…or even the latest insect meals and scamdemics being concocted by Klaus Schwab….
I guess I’ve joined the Know Nothing Party.
But getting back to the banning of humor, I think there is a certain psychological/material motivation at work among the castrated shock troops of globalism. One, many of them know they are promoting and obeying a lie, but they will never admit it (at least, not publicly) because, two, their livelihood depends on the lie being enforced, spread and maintained.
In other words, all the globalists’ stooges and useful idiots are quite well paid to mouth what they mouth, and must protect their bank accounts. And I daresay that the higher up they are in society, the more personal threats can be factored in as well, for disobedience to the Party Line.
And there’s a third motivation as well: the security of remaining within the prison walls of groupthink, especially when said groupthink has become prestigious. It doesn’t seem to matter that this is all Humpty Dumpty stuff.
Just as an additional general comment, we humans seem to get quite a charge out of accusing other humans of things. I suppose it makes us feel righteous.
By “us”, I take it you mean them 😀
Having been accused of so much by so many, I wholeheartedly agree!
Nor would I be surprised. Trump’s enemies will stop at nothing and although I won’t put it into words, there’s really only one thing left in their armoury. I hope and pray that they do not stoop to that particular evil act. Nothing they do, however, surprises me now. Nothing.
The minute money is involved I am immediately sceptical of these claims. I’ve not followed the story in any great but why didn’t she scream blue murder when the assault happened? Why didn’t she go to the press when he ran for President? I just don’t believe it.
I agree, like you Petrus I also haven’t been following the story and I too, don’t know the details of the case but I reckon she’s lying to get money, as you’ve suggested.
There’s no way Trump has sexually assaulted women, as others here have suggested, it’s a conspiracy against Donald Trump being orchestrated by George Soros.
Let’s pray President Trump over turns this conviction and the 13 other charges he’s facing.
A lot of this cancelling jokes business is all about control and enforced indoctrination. I remember my very politically correct and ‘right-on’ manager in the Civil Service said she was sending me on a Diversity and Equality course. It was never explained why she wanted me in particular to go, and I never asked why. I just said no. She tried to put her foot down but I asked her to show me in the company manuals where it was mandatory to attend this course, and how many other people in the office had taken it / were going to take it. She backed down immediately. She eventually left the office and is some highly paid big noise now in the D&E industry. I was shocked to read today https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-12065891/BRENDAN-ONEIL-Keir-Starmer-wrong-say-voters-dont-care-woke-issues.html that “According to the Taxpayers’ Alliance, NHS England employs 800 diversity and inclusion officers, at a cost of £40 million a year.” And that’s just the NHS. Multiply that throughout all government departments and local authorities and many private companies, and you can see what a racket this is. And these are the people telling us what we can laugh at, and what we can’t.
The titles of these “diversity and inclusion” officers (upon which millions of dollars are spent/wasted by American universities), when compared to what they do, proves that this is Satanic, since the substance and reality is precisely the opposite of the veneer.
The veneer is diversity and inclusion, but the reality is uniform conformity to tyranny, and exclusion of the foundations of Western Civilization.
“The veneer is diversity and inclusion, but the reality is uniform conformity to tyranny… “
In the proverbial nutshell. Got it in one…
Well (ABSOLUTELY) well, said!
How right you are. Spot on.
Agreed. The devil always disguises himself as an angel of light and words like ‘inclusion’ and ‘equality’ sound (on the surface) so ‘fair’ and ‘reasonable’, but it’s what lurks underneath that is the problem.
There is absolutely no question of a doubt that Trump is being hunted by the enemies of God and America, who will do almost anything to stop him from running again for President. The so-called rape allegation made against him was dismissed because it was clearly unsustainable, so, if my understanding is correct, the matter then went from criminal to civil adjudication, which latter is way more likely to succeed in a liberal court than a criminal trial where proof beyond doubt is required. The idea is to stain Trump’s character with a view to stopping his run for the White House, in other words a political tactic using the justice system.
There was always a statute of limitations in civilised nations (especially Christian ones) in place to protect those accused of serious crimes being charged decades after alleged events which cannot now be proved or disproved with actual evidence. In effect, this safe system was deliberately supplanted with the system used by the Communists and Nazis in their kangaroo courts. It has worked very well for the enemies of the West since they have been able to damage a great number of opponents with reputed crimes from ages past that cannot be confirmed beyond reasonable doubt due to lack of evidence. It’s been a boon for the cultural Marxists now running our nations.