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He’s never been afraid to speak his mind and often finds himself among controversy – but Ricky Gervais went a step too far at his recent live show, according to grieving parents Ryan and Suzi Gourley.
In fact, the couple were left so outraged after Gervais made a joke about a dead baby during his one-man show, Humanity, they stormed out of Belfast’s Waterfront Hall on Tuesday before it had even come to an end.
The pair later revealed that their attendance marked their first night out since the July stillbirth of their son Eli.
In an interview with Belfast Live, Suzi said: ‘I know people take things differently and I know our emotions are raw, but why joke about a baby being dead? It’s just wrong.
‘Some people might read this and think we’re over-sensitive and maybe we are – but it’s just not funny. We went and hoped to have a bit of a laugh. It was our first night out together – I’d heard of this comedian but I’d never seen him.
‘I didn’t know what his jokes were like but I wouldn’t have expected that in a million years from anybody.’
A spokesperson for Waterfront Hall, where Ricky also performed on Wednesday night, said in a statement: ‘Unfortunately we have no control at all over the material artists choose to use on stage, but we do of course appreciate this particular theme will have caused distress.’
While the couple weren’t happy with the content of the show, Gervais himself appeared delighted with the reception.
He said on Twitter Wednesday evening: ‘Thank you Belfast! You are f***ing amazing. You are very sick people for laughing at the awful things I said, but I love you anyway.’
And he didn’t seem to be too bothered if he hurt anyone’s feelings.
I wish I had a pound for every time I offended someone. Wait, I do.
— Ricky Gervais (@rickygervais) March 30, 2017