The Office showrunner says comedians who complain about ‘cancel culture’ should ‘quit and get a job at a grocery store’

‘We don’t need you anymore. Go away,’ he said

Isobel Lewis
Friday 23 April 2021 15:40
The Good Place Season 3 trailer

The Office US showrunner Michael Schur has criticised comedians who rail against “political correctness”, calling them lazy.

While comedy, like many industries, has worked to become more inclusive and socially aware in recent years, some comedians have claiming that so-called “cancel culture” is censoring the medium.

Speaking to, Schur, who has since created shows such as Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Parks and Recreation and The Good Place, said that using humour to punch down was an “abhorrent human instinct” and done by “bullies”.

Discussing comedians who complain about “political correctness”, he argued: “Those people are bad at comedy, they’re lazy. They’ve been doing comedy a certain way for a long time… and they are too lazy to write something new.

“It’s the weakest and lamest argument. No, they are not strangling. It’s never been easier and better to be a comedy writer in America or the world than right now. There’s more comedy being made, and there’s more good comedy being made.”

Schur continued: “If you have that attitude, it’s because you’re lazy and you just want to keep using the N-word or whatever in your act. And you don’t like it that people are saying, ‘Hey, maybe you shouldn’t do that’, you should quit and get a job at a grocery store or something, because we don’t need you anymore. Go away.

“You can be edgy and you can tell great stories and you can be really funny without objectifying people or making them feel less than. And that’s always been true. If you don’t see that, then that’s your problem. You have to wake up.”

Schur (bottom row, far left) with the cast of The Good Place

Schur also said that he was specifically addressing one particular comedian, although wouldn’t name them.

Last year, The Office creator Ricky Gervais, who is known for his controversial comedy style, said that the UK version of the mockumentary sitcom would not be made in the same way now.

He claimed that the BBC “would worry about some of the subjects and jokes, even though they were clearly ironic and we were laughing at this buffoon being uncomfortable around difference”.

He added: “I think if this was put out now, some people have lost their sense of irony and context.”

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