Tuesday, October 23, 2012

I'm tired of Ricky Gervais

This may be an unpopular blog post. I’m sure I’ll be accused of being old and cranky and to those I say, “I am not. And get off my lawn!” But Ricky Gervais’ act has gotten old.

Last week it was announced that Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will host next year’s Golden Globes Awards. My first thought was: “That’s a great idea. They’re very funny together.” My second was: “Who cares, it’s the Golden Globes?” and my third was: “Oh good, I’ll be spared another smug insufferable performance by Ricky Gervais.”

The sad thing is I used to love Ricky Gervais. I still feel the British version of THE OFFICE was genius. And he managed to someone create the most interesting original comic character in decades. His first few appearances on talk shows were great fun. He brought a devilishly pixyish personality to the dance that was very refreshing.

And then something happened. He just started wearing out his welcome. I remember seeing his stand-up special on HBO and being disappointed. And his TV appearances started feeling smug and oddly hostile.

I gave his HBO series EXTRAS a try and will admit there were a few bits that I thought were inspired. The “racist test” for one. But a lot of it left me just sitting there. I felt he was doing the whole series to entertain eight of his show business friends. 

Then his “bad boy” Golden Globes hosting gigs – this is what I wrote about this year’s affair:

After staging a full-on media blitz to proclaim how daring and offensive he planned to be, Ricky Gervais was a giant bust. MODERN FAMILY’s Steve Levitan was funnier in his three-minute acceptance speech than Gervais was the entire night.

At some point over the last few years I realized I wasn’t laughing anymore at Ricky Gervais. I was shouting “Fuck you” to the TV every time he opened his mouth. This is a sure sign of falling out of love.

I tried to figure out what the turn was, what soured me on this humorist I once greatly admired? I wanted to know, and I also wanted something constructive to include in this post so it wasn’t just five paragraphs of me bashing someone.  After much mulling, here’s what I’ve come up with as an explanation:

We love when edgy comics speak for us, say the things we wish we could say, make fun of the sacred cows we too feel deserved it. So it’s very much a you and me against all of them mentality.

But sometimes comics drift into me against all of you. That’s what I think happened to Ricky Gervais. The smirk, the swagger, the massive ego – I don’t find him as pixyish when his contempt is aimed at me.

But what do you think?  Am I right about Ricky Gervais? Or am I just Ed Asner in UP?

73 comments:

Dana King said...

I haven't seen much of Ricky lately, so I can't say about him. I can say George Carlin reached that point for me late in his life (me against everyone, grumpy old man who was more bitter than funny), and the last Lewis Black special I saw was moving in that direction. (Though Black is still a riot on The Daily Show.)

Then, of course, there's Clint Eastwood.

Jason Mittell said...

I agree 100% - he's just contemptuous at this point.

I read an interview with Stephen Merchant awhile back where he subtly suggested that Gervais is a bit more like David Brent as a creative partner than not, and that perhaps some of The Office's humor was actually at Gervais's expense. Thinking of it that way makes the show even more enjoyable!

Jonathan said...

I agree completely. He goes after everyone in show business on the assumption that they don't deserve their success, but if you listen closely, the implicit end of every jab is, "But I do."

The one delightful part of every awards appearance he makes is when he invariably decides to go after Steve Carell and gets clobbered.

Tracy Austin said...

I don't know if you are wrong, but you are justified. People's taste change, mature, immature,whatever. Case in point...I use to like Gallagher..... and yogurt.

Murray said...

I'm pretty much with you on this one. The only difference is I've never been a big fan of Mr. Gervais. He is part of a subset of comics that are only funny when an iron-handed director (or whoever) reins them in to follow a script. When their unbridled normal schtick is harnessed and focussed.

Left to his own devices, Gervais is pure insult on two legs. His entire idea of humour is ridicule and insult, but in an oily, snotty way that never appeals to me.

So, if you need anyone to share a cold one while guarding your lawn, I'm available.

Harry the Bastard said...

No, I'm with you man, and I'm a cranky old man of considerably fewer years than you. It's like, when I was (even) younger me and my mates would be awful to each other as a pastime, no quarter given - and being England, bear in mind, this was vicious beyond the realms of imagining for most Americans.

Then I grew out of it, most of my mates grew out of. It got to be not just immature and tiresome, but wasteful. You get one life, and eventually you get some insight that being a dick for fun is a hell of a dull frolic.

Ricky seems to be the guy who never got that memo. But he's famous, so he's not had the usual followup where people look through him when he speaks, gently stop hanging out, and only catch up with him through the gossip of others. Not yet anyway, I gather money buys you a brutal cutoff when folks are sick of your shit.

But yeah, I don't enjoy being spoken to like that anymore. And it's weird because I agree with so much of what he says, but I hate the way he says it.

Anonymous said...

Ken,

I'm pretty sure you were teased by comedian Sean O'Connor on last week's Conan O' Brien show (the one with Jeff Goldblum).

He had a small bit about a screenwriting class he once took - where the guy who wrote "Mannequin 2" wanted to teach him about "adding more character".

Just thought this was funny!

---> http://teamcoco.com/video/sean-o-connor-stand-up-10/18/12

Mo Ryan said...

I agree with you completely and I think Gervais lost what made him funny a long time ago. I generally liked Season 2 of Extras (much more than Season 1) but that was the last time his rampaging ego didn't destroy his work. A lot of his standup is comically egocentric and unfunny, and more than once on Twitter he's been a bully to others.

I think he thinks he's speaking truth to power and being edgy. I think he stopped doing that a long time ago, and now he's just a garden-variety jerk.

David Whitham said...

I think your taste has just improved with age. I have never found him to be the least bit funny.

MikeBo said...

geReapI think you're totally justified in your review of the "new" Rick Gervais. To be honest about it, I haven't really thought about the guy, except for for the "Oh, HIM again," feeling when I see him pop up on the tube. Nothing wrong with a little constructive criticism. If there's enough of it, Gervais may find his way back.

Richard said...

I second this post. I usually only see him now when he's on Conan and he always makes me cringe.

Cheers,

Jeremiah Avery said...

I enjoyed seeing him skewer the self-important twits at his first Golden Globes appearance. His pointing out what a joke the "award" really is was great.

Though, after awhile he did become a caricature of himself. Wound up becoming the Andy Millman of the last season of "Extras" that became insufferable.

Swinefever said...

I've never liked him, in fact I loathe and detest the man. He's a one-trick pony, and that one-trick just isn't very funny. As a Brit I've had to suffer friends, relatives and colleagues trying force-feed him to me for far too long. I don't like The Office, Extras, his stand-up or anything else he's ever done - he even managed to screw-up The Simpsons. As far as I'm concerned he's due to crash and burn real soon, and when he does I hope I never have to see or hear from him ever again. Sadly, however, they'll keep declaring him "the nations favourite" and giving him time and money for as long as he's prepared to gurn at the camera.

Terry said...

Ken, I could not agree with you more. I have felt exactly the same way. Loved him, loved The Office, even loved Extras. But something went wrong somewhere along the way. He went from being an everyman to being "that guy" and lost his funny along the way.

In a way, it's similar to what happened to his character in Extras, who went from being some nobody to having his own show then lost it all when his overinflated ego got the best of him. The key difference is, Gervais hasn't gotten his comeuppance yet. Here's hoping it happens soon.

I watched his HBO special expecting the everyman, and instead got a smug, self-satisfied, egotistical man who seemed barely able to mask his contempt for his own audience. And it's only been downhill since then.

JT Anthony said...

It's the way he makes you feel about yourself after hearing his ego-centric schtick. In addition to harping on the same old routine, he has no grace. He always seems derisive without shame or humility.

The smugness seems to come from bitterness in not participating in the US version of "The Office." He recognizes that his BBC original resonated with audiences, yet someone else capitalized on it and made it a critical and financial success. Classic example of a "founder" not feeling s/he got adequate credit for their idea.

Kirk said...

I feel that way about Joan Rivers.

Michael said...

Comparison time. Think of Chet Huntley and David Brinkley--the greatest anchor team ever. Huntley was "relentlessly serious," as Brinkley put it, while the latter was whimsical and snarky. When Brinkley was away, the newscast was, colleagues and critics agreed, less amusing, but it was solid. But when Brinkley was alone, his style didn't work without someone to play off of. A full half-hour of Brinkley just didn't fly. Well, Ricky Gervais may be great in a five-minute burst. But a whole evening?

WilliamJansen said...

I have never watched him on a talk-show or hosting an event, so I can't speak to how he fulfills those duties. It is plausibly a very American thing to "judge" an entertainer to how he handles himself, when he talks about the entertainment he creates, or when he hosts a show celebrating other peoples entertainment, instead of looking at the core product.

I do still think he is funny, whenever he is in character on TV (whatever character that might be). Yes, he is wildly arrogant in his stand-up, but I consider "Ricky Gervais, the stand-up comedian" to be as much an act as David Brent. Notice for example the fact, that he incessantly talks his arrogant self into situations that makes that self look bad (i.e. the constant nervous self-corrections after he has said something that could be perceived that his penis is small in his Stand Up Special). Notice also that the stand up-character is very different from his podcast-character.

His movies have never done much for me though.

Jim, Cheers Fan said...

I agree with Mo Ryan (and Kirk). The Office was great, I liked Extras a lot, too (make a google for Ian McKellan's guest spot, if you haven't seen it). But his stand-up special was just awful. IIRC, he never even did stand up until that special, he just wanted to try it and because of The Office etc, HBO gave him a prime spot he was in no way ready for. I don't watch a lot of awards shows, but from the clips I saw, he was kind of funny the first time, but the schtick wore out.

Bill McCloskey said...

I liked the British Office, Extras, and his standup special. Couldn't care less about the Golden Globes so I never saw that, but the little I saw on the net seemed as ok as any of that stuff ever is.

And as far as him "getting his "comeuppance", the guys got to have more money than god at this point, so I hardly think he cares.

to give him his due: he made his mark on television future with the conceit of the documentary film going on in the background. How many shows have ripped that off: Modern Family, Parks and Recreation, the US Office. It is such a common technique now, we forget that it pretty much originated with him.

The one I can't stand is and don't get is Dennis Miller.

danrydell said...

He's just to aware of how cheeky he is. That's the problem.

Mitchell McLean said...

Tracy is right. Yogurt hasn't been funny for some time now. :-)

The Milner Coupe said...

When fat funny guys lose weight they sometimes also lose the 'likeable clown' image and with it some of the tolerance of an audience to put up with his angst. Works the same way with financial success.

Both situations apply here and I'd be willing to bet he's aware of the backlash and snarling all the way to the bank.

I think a lot of his stuff is funny, but it is wearing thin for me. But it's not really a judgement of him personally. If we didn't watch anything made by 'assholes', there'd only be about a half hour of programing a day.

JL Carter said...

I really enjoyed Gervais' online episode of "Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee" with Jerry Seinfeld. He comes across as genuinely funny, not snarky.
http://comediansincarsgettingcoffee.com/ricky-gervais-mad-man-in-a-death-machine/

Mark said...

I always hate to see arguments about whether something is funny or not. Like Roger Ebert says, you either laugh or you don't. I will note that in general, UK comics tend to do less pandering to their audiences than we're used to in the US.

Mitchell Hundred said...

Wait, are you implying that you would not want to be Carl Fredricksen? Because he is, in all seriousness, quite adventurous and bad-ass for someone his age. If I were you, I'd embrace that label.

Katie said...

I agree. His Golden Globes hosting jobs were just lazy and arrogant.

D. McEwan said...

I'm afraid I've traveled the same road re: Ricky Gervais; I've just been slower to admit it. Of course, while Amy and Tina are comedy goddesses, the Oscars have decided to fill up the loss of Gervais by having them hosted next year by Seth McFarland, the American Ricky Gervais, only with McFarland it was a shorter road for me, as I've never actually liked him, whereas I began by lovng Gervais. Seth's SNL hosting gig was insufferably smug and unfunny. I dread to think how unedurable he will make the Oscars.

Jill Pinnella Corso said...

I'm glad you figured out the reason why. I tend to agree with you, although I actually haven't seen as much of his work. I just suspect you're right.

I can't stand self indulgence but I guess, at least I tell myself, Gervais has earned it. And plenty who have not earned it self indulge. Like the open mic singer who thinks you need to know the inspiration for their songs. Actually, I witnessed the TV writer version of that last night at the NY TV Fest.

Eric J said...

Wow, it was fabulous seeing that AH 3000 in the Comedians Getting Coffee video. Who were the two dorks laughing at each other the whole time?

slgc said...

I agree with what The Milner Coupe said and will add that Gervais' humor was more organic when he was up and coming. Now that he's achieved everything he set out to do, his humor is less organic and more forced.

mikeinseattle said...

I have seen a lot of Mr. Gervais over the years. Like Ken, I find moments of the original THE OFFICE and EXTRAS to be inspired.

(Kate Winslet in a Nun's habit between scenes dealing with Nazis talking about a phone sex conversation? Brillant.)

But much of his humor is what I call "cringe humor." Embarrassing a character, belittling a character. Isn't that what the whole schtick with his foil, Karl Pilkington, is about? And the series with the dwarf? It was all about making those characters look bad so we can find something about them funny. I guess I've been made fun of enough in my life that it grows old after awhile.

Max Clarke said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Max Clarke said...


For me, Ricky doesn't pass the "soul-swapping" test.

When I was a kid, it seems my favorite stars were people I'd love to be. It's a long list, but Sean Connery in Thunderball would be an example. Another is Mason Williams playing "Classical Gas" on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour. And wouldn't it be fun to be Johnny Carson?

With a show like Cheers, I could see myself as those guys. Some I might want for a short time, but they were all "soul-swappable." Who wouldn't want to be Carla, unafraid to tell a low-tipping customer where to go?

I've never wanted to be Ricky Gervais.

Daddy Background said...

Do I really need to chime in after all the above comments?

I'll only point out that without giving too much thought as to why, both "The Ricky Gervais Show" (which started out as gaspingly funny) and "Life is Short" (which never was anything) got dropped from the series recording list on my DVR.

Oliver said...

Ricky Gervais has been involved in one good show, The Office, and has coasted on its success ever since. Even The Office's originality is hugely overstated, especially by Americans.

I find his popularity, both here in the UK and the US, inexplicable. His stand-up is painful, obvious and trite and his smug persona grating and unfunny.

On the other hand, I am delighted that Fey and Poehler are hosting the Globes and will go out of my way to watch because of it.

cityslkrz said...

I used to think he was extremely funny: Stand-up, The Office and even Extras. But then he started getting just mean and bullying. The last show with little people wasn't funny in the least. And all the shows with Carl are hard to watch, they're so nasty. Making fun of self-important show biz celebrities is one thing. But he should have stopped there.

Anonymous said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PYuaycrkh9g&feature=related

this is part 1 of Gervais' Talking Funny with LouisCK, Chris Rock, and Jerry Seinfeld. Very funny in spots and I didn't find Gervais annoying...well, not much anyway.

Pam aka sisterzip

donnie said...

Yes! This needed to be said.

I thought "The Office" was brilliant, "Extras" even more so. "The Invention of Lying" quite amusing.

But the HBO specials? "Life's Too Short"? His stuff with poor Carl Pilkington? Unbearable.

Chicago Web Designer said...

I have always found him a bit of a creep so have never been a fan, he has never really made me laugh.
Comedy really does go in and out of vogue ...just look at Monty Python and how dated it seems. I have just read a book that literally made me cry with laughter. It is by a British writer Edward Bison Mr Bison's Journal ...a comedian of the future perhaps

Sue in Seattle said...

I love Ricky Gervais - still do. His routine about Humpty Dumpty is hilarious, as is the scene in Extras with David Bowie. I love his laugh and his delivery, and I think he is fully aware of his failings as a person and a writer.

Michael Stoffel said...

He's in a Time Warner ad that runs constantly on my cable system. I just want to strap him to a rocket and send him back across the ocean.

Mac said...

Me and you both, Ken. I was blown away by The Office, and whatever Gervais does in the future, to have made that is an amazing achievement. No-one could have hit the heights of that show again, but for me, Extras (while it had its moments) was mainly just Ricky showing us who's on his contacts list. By the time Life's Too Short came along, what was left of everybody's goodwill from The Office was exhausted.

For all that he declares nothing is "off-limits" to joke about - he is never the butt of the joke. In Life's Too Short he has a running joke about three washed-up British entertainers and their terrible careers, but his own failed attempt to be a big-screen rom-com star has never featured. I've seen him on a chat show where another guest takes the piss out of him, in the way he does with everybody, and he had a serious sense-of-humour failure.

There's an unpleasantness and a bullying/arrogance that's grown in his work, in direct relation to the decrease in funny. He's gone from being that guy who got the party going, to that guy who didn't know when to leave.

Mark said...

I'm not sure that's exactly it. I did think Extra's was a great show and the last episode was very moving. The price for celebrity. The desire for celebrity. 'Reality Shows' and the sadness they represent most of the time. I worked for a reality show producer...I made me run away. So I think Extra's did capture something no one wants to talk about, or at least TV shows don't. The price to be a celebrity. The willingness to do anything to maintain it. To get it for many people.
I think his POV may have gotten stale. And when you get that successful, it's hard to pretend not to be. You have met the enemy and he is you. Don't we all become the thing we fear the most?

jcs said...

The problem with Ricky Gervais is that he's just taking cheap shots. There's rarely a subversiveness or bigger message to his heckling. Downey is a drug addict, Willis' ex-wife has a much younger husband now. So what? Where's the fresh insight or a new perspective on show business?

Gervais is very talented and provided us with outstanding work but has taken a rather lazy approach during recent times.

Sebastian Peitsch said...

I feel the same but to me it's like eating too much ice cream.

He should've spread his presence on TV more thin. Other than that he and Merchant have cranked out ridiculously funny stuff for a decade. Office, Extras, the Podcast which is also his show on HBO, Karl Pilkington on Idiot Abroad, Life's too short, Invention of lying, three standup hours, Invention of lying...

He's basically in a loosing situation being an atheist and confrontational comic.

Look at Dice. Same deal.

Bill said...

I think he is a lot funnier to people who don't live in Hollywood. :)

Michael said...

The issue is when 'stars' get rich enough to get skinny. After that they are never the same. Ricky, Kevin James, Seth Rogen - are you sensing a pattern?

MillyWahkay said...

I loved the first season of The Office from England. The 2nd season was awful. Gervais became a spoof of himself.

What i never understood about his mean-spirited hosting is, Who approved this? Is everyone ok with this? I didn't find it intelligent. It just came off as abusive, The laughs were always at someone's expense, rather than being a creative insight of humor.

Comedians are a funny lot. I saw Carlin in '86, and i didn't laugh. 20 min of the "7 naughty words" schtick isn't funny, and the rest of the show was him using poo-poo words and naughty descriptions.
Yeah, i prefer amy pohler and david cross as modern comics. They actually create something, instead of destroy someone.

mikeinseattle said...

Has the mystery of what happened between Gervais and Garry Shandling ever been solved?

D. McEwan said...

"Sebastian Peitsch said...
He's basically in a loosing situation being an atheist and confrontational comic.

Look at Dice. Same deal."


Asking as an atheist myself, how is his being an atheist putting him "in a losing position"? It's the best thing about him.

And what on earth is that "Look at Dice. Same deal," comment supposed to mean? I had the misfortune to know "Dice" personally all too well. We worked together on the Comedy Store door staff over 30 years ago. He even crashed a party at my home once, to which he was intentionally NOT invited. (I had to bite on my tongue not to have "Who told you about this party?" be the first words out of my mouth when I opened my front door and there was Andrew Dice Clay befouling my front porch with his vile presence.)

Gervais has gone off, but Dice was always an untalented, bigoted bore who only appealed to neanderthal assholes like himself. And Dice was certainly no atheist. He lacked the necessary intelligence to be an atheist.

A_Homer said...

As a comedian he lost something really necessary - a connection with the audience as all sharing some experience - by not focusing on comedy and instead, started hammering on his moral/ethical position (Atheism) or for that matter, a one-shot gimmick (the idea that this other guy is hilariously funny and he should just make a show following him around and telling stories about him). Just like losing weight, he suddenly wasn't the funny heavy guy, but revealed he wanted to be one of the beautiful people who could say what they want whenever. But I disagree with Extras, it was beautifully character-driven, had a story-arc that delivered enough development and made SENSE in the world of tv, and of his character. It is difficult to play an unlikeable character and be funny and also reveal something we all like in the end... Maybe its a UK thing. But Extras was moving.

Christodoulos said...

I think that even people in 1912 would find Ricky Gervais too smug and condescending.

Ken, a Friday question. Of all the jokes you have written, which are your favorites? Not necessarily the funniest, but the ones that stand out in your memory because of the circumstances in which they were written or conceived, or their originality, or even for sentimental reasons.

Johnny Walker said...

Mikeinseattle: Yes it has. If you watch all the extras on the Larry Sanders box set, and then watch that interview, you see it from Shandling's perspective. They were coming at it from two completely different directions. Shandling was all about opening up, Gervais was just his usual impish self.

A few weeks later and Shandling probably would have played along, but it got off on the wrong foot and stayed there.

Johnny Walker said...

Hmm. I'm not quite of Gervais yet, but it's true that his follow up projects have been lacking. EXTRAS was just "taboo of the week", and the formula quickly got stale.

He comes across as pretty confident and content in himself, but he does seem to drift over into arrogance at times, too. A little self-depreciation would go a long way.

I still think he's got an interesting voice, though. I think there might be another good project still waiting surface. (I heard good things about Cemetary Junction, but like everyone else, I haven't seen it.)

Anonymous said...

I was his biggest fan. I hung on his every word. And then earlier this year, I Unfollowed him on Twitter. Overly sensitive to any kind of mild criticism or questioning, and an arrogant bore. I don't know who this new guy is, but I would like the former Ricky Gervais back, please..

Steve M

Markus Ponto said...

I like Ricky Gervais. A lot.

However he is not the kind of comedian who just wants to please you. He is endlessly fascinated by embarrassment. He likes to test the boundaries of embarrassment (if there is such a thing). I never found im arrogant, though he loves to play games with people for his own amusement (like posting over and over again pictures of him taking a bath and making funny faces - encouraging his followers to retweet them), which I think can be mistaken for arrogance.

I don't think ANY of his jokes at the Golden Globes were offensive. There were much, much nastier things in the papers or on the internet or on television about the people he made fun of.

His Liam Neeson bit on Life's too short was epic. I could rewatch that a million times. I am nevertheless worried about his new series "Derek" - where I simply just don't believe his take on his character. It feels "acted", as if he thought his sitcom character in Extras would be funny in a stand alone series (wig+funny way of talking).

Pat Reeder said...

I like Ricky Gervais, but then, I haven't seen all that much of his stuff, especially recently. I thought he was great in "Ghost Town," though. Reminded me of a modern day W.C. Fields.

On another subject, Christodoulos asked you to name your favorite jokes you've ever written. As the writer of a daily syndicated topical radio service, I've written over a hundred one-liners a day, five days a week, 50 weeks a year for over 20 years. People are always asking me to tell them a joke, and I swear, I can never think of a single thing I've written in the past 12 hours. There's just so much, I can't recall any single line. For some reason, the only joke I can ever remember writing is from nearly 20 years ago:

Avon is expanding into China. In China, "Ding-Dong" isn't the company slogan, it's the Avon Lady's name.

I imagine it would take a platoon of psychiatrists to explain why, out of the hundreds of thousands of lines I've written, THAT is the only one I can remember.

Tim said...

Did you ever see the "Invention of Lying?"

That's for me the point where I lost Ricky Gervais. That's where he stopped being hungry - you know, that point where you feel you no longer have to prove yourself, where you are no longer working towards your best.

He took a really clever and smart concept, and a potentially profound idea, and squandered it to make a mean spirited attack against all religions, reducing it down to "it's a lie, and you believe in a big man in the sky." It was blunt and mean spirited, and it just felt nasty.

It was made worse because you realized that this guy did not know as much as he thought he did about religions, and was basically acting like a smug atheist to the entire audience. It never went beyond mocking the mere idea of religion.

Even now, when you watch him, it's the people around him that are funnier. There used to be a point where his act was basically "I'm going to act like I'm so much better than everyone else, but I know I have my flaws," and now it's "I'm so much better than everyone else, why can't you guys see that? Don't you know how smart I am?"

Simply, he's no longer hungry.

Anonymous said...

Say what you will about Ricky Gervais, the man adores his cat!

Joseph Scarbrough said...

You know who I'm sick of? Neil Patrick Harris. And Mila Kunis. Both are highly over-rated.

Anonymous said...

It's the smug - "I'm smart and famous and I deserve it and you don't because you're not as awesome as me. Nah nah nah." - assholishness that grates on my last nerve.

Diana said...

I recently became interested in him after watching "Ghost Town" so I pulled up some of his stuff on You Tube. I really felt like he went WAY over the line on his Father Daugher joke. I totally lost respect and became concerned about his ability to joke about such a thing.

Diana Bala said...

I recently became interested in him after watching "Ghost Town" so I pulled up some of his stuff on You Tube. I really felt like he went WAY over the line on his Father Daugher joke. I totally lost respect and became concerned about his ability to joke about such a thing.

Diana Bala said...

I recently became interested in him after watching "Ghost Town" so I pulled up some of his stuff on You Tube. I really felt like he went WAY over the line on his Father Daugher joke. I totally lost respect and became concerned about his ability to joke about such a thing.

Anonymous said...

Maybe one day Ricky Gervais will write something on par with Mannequin: On The Move and then Mr. Levine will find him funny.

Graeme said...

Oh goodness no you're not alone.

I was never a big fan of the UK version of The Office, but I loved Extras until as the second season progressed to the final special where he became increasingly contemptuous toward his own audience.

And his Golden Globe appearances mystify me. I would have paid cash for any actor presenting or receiving an award to have said "That Ricky. Thanks for pointing out how vain, useless, awful and ineffectual us rich actors are. I presume that you're donating your fee to charity. Oh wait, you're not, you hypocrite."

Earl Malvar said...

While Ricky Gervais' rude comedy has worn out to some, I have always looked forward to his rants about people and institutions bigger than him or any one of us. It humanizes these people/organizations and nudges them off a bit from their precious golden pedestals. He's like a voice of the people against the pretentious ones "above" us all, not that it's his real intention. He's always said that he's doing it for himself and we're just going with him for the ride. In any case, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler were funny as well in a calculating and sober kind of way.

Anonymous said...

I think he is SUCH a breath of fresh air...!! thank you for someone who pushes the social norms and has a laugh, enjoys himself and doesn't change for anyone - not for ONE second do I believe anything he says is EVER of malice or ill intent, or stems from a rude harsh place. In fact he seems very kind and intelligent. He's a normal guy living an extraordinary life. And he cops so much criticism for everything he does yet I think he should be awarded a bloody medal for staying true to who he is - do you know how rare and hard that must be? Especially in Hollywood of all places it's almost unheard of.....

To me it's like he's the colour in the dull, grey setting of the world (our world) in the wizard of Oz when all the munchkins come out and the colour and energy erupts. Was Dorothy politically incorrect to call them munchkins?? When did we all become so sterile you have to give a press conference because its bad for PR, we'd rather lie to ourselves and it's a load of bollocks. The world just becomes that more drab, lifeless and colourless cos we may as well all be the same and boring.

Thank you for Ricky Gervais staying true to who he is, that is to be admired in the adversity he faces daily I'm sure. I'm amazed people don't get his humour, I'm not sure if its an Australian culture thing why I do.. but I wish more people were like him.

Carly
Australia

Anonymous said...

Lay off of Ricky. He is a human being, and as such he's not gonna be a hit every time. What makes him talented is that he is a hit more often than not. I think you being "over it" is more about you getting sick of his particular act - nothing wrong with that. I get sick of cake every once in a while, but all that means is I've had too much of a good thing. Ricky's trade is product - and someone, somewhere is enjoying that product. You should know all about product - you've just managed to create an article that I have read that makes an amusing point. However it's probably the only article of yours I'll ever read (offense not intended). The irony is delicious. Myself, I luv his stuff. I wish he would make more of it. Learn English with Ricky Gervais? Brilliant.

Buster P. Keaton said...

I think that Ricky Gervais is a lot more like David Brent than he, or anybody else, seems to realize. Maybe what made The Office a work of genius is that Brent's character was actually Gervais'. It worked in that show because everything was built around it, but everywhere else it falls flat on its face.

Dirk from Melbourne said...

Tried to get his 'brand' of humor, until he started poking fun at the disabled. Sasha Baron Cohen is another who gets a rise on the less fortunate, I miss the days off openly self depreciating fun, now we get cowardly stuff all the time.

Anonymous said...

I always thought I had a good sense of humor. I laugh a lot at a vast & varied mix of comedians. I have never though Ricky Gervaise was in the least funny. He's just a short arsed, fat, smarmy pommy git. I have no idea how he ever got popular. It worries me that there is something missing in me that has apparently gone right above my head that precludes me from enjoying what so many people seem to find really enjoyable