August 30th, 2009
Edinburgh Fringe Festival ’09 – Richard Herring
We were on the flight to Edinburgh when we first heard all about the controversy surrounding Richard Herring’s show Hitler Moustache from our friend. Apparently, a writer for The Guardian claimed Richard Herring hates Pakistanis and labelled him a big ol’ racist. I hadn’t read the article at this point or Richard’s right of reply but was pretty certain that the show must have been taken out of context. “Let’s get t-shirts for the show that say “Pakistanis love Richard Herring!” I said and that was that.
We never got time to make the t-shirts so turned up to the show without them. (At this point I should mention that we were wearing other clothes.) My husband bumped into Richard when we got to the venue and told him “Pakis love Richard!” making him laugh and then they had a big old man hug. I told him off for using the word “Pakis” not because I find it offensive in that context but because it can sometimes make others feel uncomfortable. I once induced a collective gasp when I used it in front of colleagues and I was merely quoting a scene from The Office.
So, the show itself: fantastic. You’d have to be an amoeba to think it was in any way racist, in fact quite the opposite. Richard challenges racism and the ideas racists hold, revealing them to be ridiculous. Comedy is such a powerful format for delivering that kind of message, much more effective than me saying, “Racism’s bad, mmkay?”
Posted at 5:25 pm | 2 comments | Category: Comedy | Tags: edfringe