We are losing our sense of irony, says Jack Dee

By Laura Harding, Press Association Senior Entertainment Correspondent

The British sense of irony is being lost, comedian Jack Dee has said.

The Lead Balloon star added he has more or less given up posting on Twitter as a result.

Jack Dee (Ian West/PA)

He told Radio Times: “There’s nothing you can say that won’t upset someone – I just can’t be bothered.

“It’s harder to convince people that if you say something unappealing, you’re being ironic.

“I grew up being told that Americans don’t get irony. I think they’re masters of irony compared to what we do.

“If you watch The Simpsons, Family Guy or so many comedians – they’re so good at saying one thing, believing another and getting the audience to follow. We’re losing that.”

Dee said he has not seen the funny side of Brexit, telling the magazine: “When the result came, everyone was knocked sideways. It’s quite hard to find that funny.”

Jack Dee (Ian West/PA)

However, he said he is worried about a potential political imbalance in comedy, as he and his fellow Remainers all share the same view point.

He said it reminds him of the explosion in alternative comedy during Margaret Thatcher’s time in Downing Street.

“You only needed to mention Margaret Thatcher and you’d get a round of applause. I figured there’s just no point in doing stuff about this. There would be three other people doing the same thing as you.

“And topical comedy becomes a bit like doing crosswords. The gags that you all arrive at are going to be pretty much the same because the subjects are the same.”

Jack Dee (Ian West/PA)

He says he sees a similar thing happening now with younger comedians, as they are anxious to prove their allegiance to one side.

He said: “Instinctively, I want comedians to be independent of all of that. I don’t want them to be hailing a new type of government. I’ve always thought it was my job to question all of it.”

(Radio Times)

Radio Times is out now.

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