I struggle to come up with 1-liners that are not offensive. But I think no matter what you write, it will offend someone. I wonder how others cope with this, since I like to think of myself as an understanding and non-judgmental human-being...
Is comedy always offensive to some people?
(7 posts) (7 voices)
I wouldn't worry too much. Remember, you can't make an omelette without cracking jokes.
Either everything is funny or nothing is.
Can't remember who said that first but, by jingo by crikey, they were right.
The worst things can be funny if the joke is good. I was emailed a 9/11 joke before the towers had fallen. Offensive? Yes. But it made me laugh and feel a bit less dazed on a uniquely frightening day.
I find that the only people offended by my comic writing are Jews and black people. So, a majority are completely fine with it. You can't pander to every niche group when creating art.
'Everyone should be offended once a day...and twice on Sundays.'
Scouser arrested for taking a fence.
I am constantly surprised at what people manage to be offended by. Given that we are all here to read and write comedy you can expect some of it to be a bit close to the mark. One of the first reactions to a disaster or something frightening is to make light of it (it’s a natural defence mechanism to make it less frightening).
I think you can make light of just about anything, though you do have to be a bit careful HOW you write it sometimes. I suspect a lot of the cases on this site which have caused mass offence are more down to amateurs writing (of which I am one) and not quite getting their point across in the manner intended, rather than anything malicious. This is after all a training ground for amateurs and professionals to write comedy and readers should perhaps give writers a little more leeway before jumping on them.
Readers are quite welcome to add constructive criticism, so it’s far more helpful (particularly from one of the pros) to say ‘I get the point of that but how about writing it this way..’ rather than hurling abuse (which some are little too quick to do).
I just rely on my internal barometer, if I think something’s a bit iffy I might leave it half an hour and come back for a second look but really I’m not too worried about offending the odd person (who usually proves to be oversensitive). You can’t please all of the people all of the time. Carry on writing and try not to let the moaning get to you.
PS I know a couple of African doctors who tell fantastically racist jokes about other African countries so I don't think we should beat ourselves up too much.
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