| 15.8°C Dublin

'Unfunny moment' Tommy Tiernan says comedians should not be ‘hounded out of job’ for making a ‘mistake’

"If somebody gets up onstage and tells a joke and on further reflection that joke's actually coming from not such a good place, then just stop telling it and move on, than be hung drawn and quartered in the virtual town square,” he said.

Close

Tommy Tiernan

Tommy Tiernan

Tommy Tiernan

Tommy Tiernan has said that he doesn't believe comedians should be "hounded out of their job" for making a "mistake" onstage.

In the latest episode of Free Speech Nation: The Podcast, the Donegal comedian told Andrew Doyle for GB News that something is either funny or it’s not.

"If somebody gets up onstage and tells a joke and on further reflection that joke's actually coming from not such a good place, then just stop telling it and move on, than be hung drawn and quartered in the virtual town square,” he said.

This comes as comedian Jimmy Carr has been widely criticised for a joke he made in Netflix comedy special His Dark Material, which was released on Christmas Day 2021.

The clip features toward the end of the show in a segment he dubs “career-ending jokes”, the comedian says: “When people talk about the Holocaust, they talk about the tragedy and horror of six million Jewish lives being lost to the Nazi war machine. But they never mention the thousands of gypsies that were killed by the Nazis.”

Carr then adds: “No one ever talks about that because no one wants to talk about the positives.”

Close

Jimmy Carr receives backlash for joke about travellers in Netflix special (Matt Crossick/PA)

Jimmy Carr receives backlash for joke about travellers in Netflix special (Matt Crossick/PA)

Jimmy Carr receives backlash for joke about travellers in Netflix special (Matt Crossick/PA)

As the clip began circulating on social media, several MPs and the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust criticised the 8 Out of 10 Cats presenter and called upon Netflix to remove the special.

Tiernan told Free Speech Nation: The Podcast: "It can be about race, it can be about gender, it can be about the Olympics or Putin or doughnuts or lesbians or mermaids. If it's funny, it's funny.”

"And if people don't find it funny, then that's all it is, it's just an unfunny moment,” he said.

"I walk on a stand-up stage to free myself from autocracy. I trust laughter and I also trust the humanity of the people involved that if somebody makes a mistake it's okay.”

The Derry Girls actor added: "You follow the laughter and that can take you to odd strange places.”

"I think laughter is an outlaw. Laughter isn't the Mayor. Laughter is the weird, wild woman who lives in a tree four miles outside the town.

"So I really would be very, very slow to adopt a manifesto for stand-up.”

Sunday World Newsletter

Sign up for the latest news and updates

This field is required This field is required

Tiernan told Andrew Doyle that stand-up "is a thing of on the one hand being free, free to do whatever comes into your mind on the stage whatever you and the audience find funny, with also kind of an examination of your own generosity maybe”.

"It's that thing of being irresponsible, so people who are touting responsibility will find that upsetting.”

Carr appeared to address the criticism during his performance at the Whitley Bay Playhouse for his Terribly Funny Show on Saturday night.

The Mirror reports that he made a quip about being cancelled while on stage.

He told the audience: “The joke that ends my career is already out there.”

He said: “I am going to get cancelled, that’s the bad news. The good news is I am going down swinging.

“The joke that ends my career, it’s already out there. It’s on YouTube, Netflix, or whatever, and it’s fine until one day it f***ing isn’t.”

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices


Privacy