Last night, Louise and I went to see Arj Barker, who is an American comedian. I had never heard of him before. It was not really my choice; Louise was given the tickets.
Mr Barker may well be typical of the modern generation of comedians. He used the word “motherfucker” dozens of times, and his routine included imaginary conversations with his own penis, fantasies about persuading people to smear themselves with their own excrement, and a lot more such smut. The audience, which was very young, seemed to like it.
It is probably the fault of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore, who took obscenity to such lengths in their “Derek and Clive” series that modern comedians find it necessary to go to such prurient excess. I found Peter Cook and Dudley Moore hysterically funny, but the more modern version – not so much.
Interestingly, Eddie Izzard, who is arguably much more controversial, being a transvestite, is rather more delicate in his material, and I do find him funny. He went to my old school, Eastbourne College. Perhaps there is something about the sea air in East Sussex which breeds a slightly puritanical streak.