Being fond of a one-liner, Jimmy Carr’s jokes often revolve around a touchy subject, being set up with an innocent phrase then ‘going there’ for the punch line.
But what is fair game? Everything, apparently, except
his own shortcomings as a comedian Hillsborough.
“I think anything is fair game for comedy,” he told Kirsty Young on Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs. "Pretty much. There’s things in very specific locales that you cannot joke about, but everything else is kind of fine. It’s how you do it. It’s the intent. I would say the one thing you can never joke about in the UK, is Hillsborough. It’s a tragedy that has touched people in a very specific way and I cannot imagine anyone ever coming up with a joke about that.”
He added that he believes it’s no only okay for comedians to joke about sensitive topics, it can help people come to terms with them.
“You can joke about religion and I do often,” he said. “You can joke about death, you can joke about murders, and you can joke about disasters. If comedy has any purpose it does help people cope with stuff and make it okay.”
Carr was taken to task in 2009 for joking about the Iraq and Afghanistan wars (“we are going to have a fucking good Paralympic team in 2012”), but pointed out that it’s not like he’s directing these types of jokes directly at the victims.
“I’m not shouting these jokes through people’s letterboxes,” he added. “They’ve come to see the show. They’re literally buying into it. When they’re taken out of context and reprinted in the paper, then there’s a big media storm.”
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