Jokes under scrutiny

Is it possible to be a comedian when you don’t know who you’re making jokes for? When you’re unsure who is listening, and what mood they’re in? How can comedians tell the jokes they want to tell in a world where the butt of those jokes can turn a community against you? Can comedy survive in this age of outrage?”

“No longer does a joke stay in the room where it was told. If it’s filmed and put online, it reaches an audience for which it was never intended. If it’s repeated on social media – removed from the atmosphere around it and the build-up created by the comedian and sent out to people who don’t even want to hear it – it travels further; and something is different. The words are the same, but it’s not the same joke.”   (Edited comments by Miranda Sawyer in The Observer Aug 11 2019)

 Maybe, after decades, time and tide have made me more grumpy, (what? me?), but I do think “comedy” has become more vulgar and crude, less clever, as a  generalisation.  I literally don’t even understand some of the comedians.  Comedy is seemingly aimed at the young on social media, leaving us old guys scratching our heads.  This is a shame because we need all the laughs we can get, such is the state of the world.  One thing I’m sure of – jokes are seldom enhanced by crudity and put-downs.  And you can’t tell jokes without using the”f” word, best return to your day job.

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