Rowan Atkinson doesn’t do many interviews

“It does seem to me that the job of comedy is to offend, or have the potential to offend, and it cannot be drained of that potential.

Every joke has a victim.
That’s the definition of a joke. Someone or something or an idea is made to look ridiculous.”

Shouldn’t comedy kick up at people in authority, and not down at those who have no power?

“I think you’ve got to be very, very careful about saying what you’re allowed to make jokes about,” he says. “You’ve always got to kick up? Really? What if there’s someone extremely smug, arrogant, aggressive, self-satisfied, who happens to be below in society? They’re not all in houses of parliament or in monarchies.

There are lots of extremely smug and self-satisfied people in what would be deemed lower down in society, who also deserve to be pulled up.

In a proper free society, you should be allowed to make jokes about absolutely anything.”


Rowan Atkinson: ‘In a proper free society, you should be allowed to make jo…
The actor on disparate creations Mr Bean and Blackadder, cancel culture and his first starring TV role in decades
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