John Cleese Talks Cancel Culture and Revival


English actor John Cleese poses for a picture at the Sarajevo Film Festival August 16, 2017. Cleese recently made some fresh comments about 'woke' culture in comedy.

English actor John Cleese poses for a picture at the Sarajevo Film Festival August 16, 2017. Cleese recently made some fresh comments about ‘woke’ culture in comedy.


Legendary comedian John Cleese ripped into what many people call the “revival,” saying it had a negative impact on comedy.

The 82-year-old ‘Monty Python’ star said there have ‘always been limits in comedy’ but noted in an interview with Fox News Digital that the current moment is “particularly worrying”.

“A lot of comedians now sit there and when they think of something, they say something like, ‘Can I get away with this? I don’t think so. So-and-so got in trouble, and he said that. , oh, she said that. You know what I mean? And that’s the death of creativity,” Cleese said.

To avoid falling victim to cancel culture, comedians discuss topics they believe are safe zones, according to British comics.

Young comedians, he said, go through the toughest times.

“You see, my audience is much older, and they’re just not interested in most woke attitudes,” Cleese said.

This “awakening” has a disastrous impact on comedy, he continued.

“If you’re worried about offending people and constantly thinking about it, you’re not going to be very creative, so I think that had a disastrous effect,” Cleese said.

Ricky Gervais and Dave Chappelle are among comedians who have come under scrutiny over the past year for controversial posts in their work. They have both received backlash over “transphobic” material in Netflix specials.

Chappelle continues to sell out shows across the United States, according to media reports.

Cleese thinks there should never be a time when a comedian is “canceled.”

What have other comedians said recently?

Cleese is certainly not alone in his thoughts on the state of comedy, which are shared by many other comedians.

Rowan Atkinson, known for his roles as Mr. Bean, often rallied against cancel culturereported The Irish Times.

“It seems to me that the job of comedy is to offend, or have the potential to offend, and it can’t be drained of that potential,” Atkinson said in the June interview. “Every joke has a victim. That’s the definition of a joke.

Jerrod Carmichael, a comedian who hosted “Saturday Night Live” earlier this year, went a step further. He thinks the cancel culture is invented, he said in a round table with Hollywood Reporter in June.

“If you’re doing art and it causes conflict or whatever, I mean, that’s part of it, but the cancellation, I think it’s just to give boring people something interesting to tell, like a bad ghost,” Carmichael said.

Steve Harvey enjoyed a 30-year career in comedy, but he feels he wouldn’t be able to do stand-up comedy in the current climate. according to Variety.

“Political correctness has killed comedy. Every joke you tell now hurts someone’s feelings,” he said in January, going on to offer a view similar to Atkinson’s. But what people don’t understand about comedians is that a joke has to be about something. It must be someone.

Comedian Bill Burr said on “The Pat McAfee Show” in December, he has “the right to say what I mean and say it how I mean”.

“If they come to me and they have something legit, I’ll apologize to them,” Burr said. “But I don’t apologize to a bunch of… people because I told a joke (at a show) that they weren’t at.”

Mike Stunson covers real-time news for McClatchy. He graduated from Western Kentucky University in 2011 and previously worked at the Paducah Sun and the Madisonville Messenger as a sportscaster and the Lexington Herald-Leader as a breaking news reporter.
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