Thursday, April 08, 2010

I Was Drinking When I Wrote This: Forgive Me If It Goes Astraaaauuuuuggghhhh

Angry. I am angry. And my heart beats so that I can hardly speak...

Now, I am going to tread incredibly carefully around this topic, because I don't want to offend anyone. No, wait a second. I don't care if I offend anyone. Well...yes, of course I care. I wouldn't want anyone to read something I wrote and get upset. I wouldn't make jokes about race, disability, sexuality or anything else. At least, not intentionally.

But I am not a professional stand-up comedian.

Frankie Boyle is a professional stand-up comedian.

This was a blog written today, and retweeted with venom. In it, a woman, who has a daughter with Down's Syndrome, writes about going to see Boyle, who makes a series of, in her view, tasteless jokes about Down's. She gets upset by these jokes, has a quiet word with her husband, then gets picked on by Boyle for talking. She explains she is upset, and Boyle reacts, etc, etc, etc. It’s a very reasonably-written piece.


Then the internet got involved.

OK, firstly: I do not know what Boyle said, and I can only go from what I Live For Glitter said, and she is obviously not an impartial observer. And as I said before, it's not a hysterical piece, and I have absolutely nothing against the blogger herself. Although, from my personal point of view, it is quite a precarious position to get tickets for a Frankie Boyle gig - possibly, whether deserved or not, the most notorious well-known comedian gigging at the moment - and in the front row, especially, ESPECIALLY when you admit yourself that you're not sure if that was wise or not because presumably you know that IF YOU SIT IN THE FRONT ROW OF A STAND-UP GIG YOU'LL PROBABLY GET PICKED ON (apologies for the random lapses into capitals; these are the bits I have been actually screaming at the walls) and then get offended when in his scattergun approach to bad taste, he accidentally shoots you in the emotional balls.

It's Frankie Boyle. Frankie Boyle. His show is actually called "I Would Happily Punch Every One Of You In The Face." Seriously, what the hell were you expecting? Kabuki? It's not like you went to see a nice friendly cookery demonstration from James Martin and he unexpectedly served lightly sauteed panda marinaded in blackface.

Boyle said, according to I Live For Glitter, that it was the most excruciating moment of his career. And then went on to try and make a joke of it. Thus doing his job. He's a stand-up, and so, rightly or wrongly, tried to make it funny. He had a lot of people who'd paid to watch him funny things up, not admit his whole approach to his comedic career was flawed, have a live breakdown on stage, and immediately tender his resignation.

All of this didn't make me that angry, really (really!). That was reserved for the commenters on I Live For Glitter's post. Who, apart from a few exceptions, screamed from their righteous podiums (podii?) that Boyle was SCUM! And, in a few cases, deserved to be ASSAULTED!

OK, seriously? Do you have enough facts about this situation to wish physical violence on someone?

Eeek, sorry. At this point, with this level of internal alcohol, I have somewhat run out of steam. Apologies; I will continue this tomorrow. It will probably contain the word "pernicious".

Blog Promise Kept!

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