Ken Dodd on humour…

Continuing our theme on humour, here’s a great quote from Ken Dodd on the nature of the beast in last week’s Spectator:

‘Aristotle thought that comedy was like a buckled mill wheel, something that wasn’t quite right. I think that comedy is a perception of incongruities, something slightly off-centre’.


  • Rory

    Aristotle was always a bit of a sourpuss anyway beloved of calvinists everywhere (especially the clerical calvinists in the Irish catholic Church).

    Socrates is holy and Dodd is closer to Socrates. As Yeats had it in The Fiddler of Dooney

    For the good are always the merry
    Save by an evil chance
    And the merry love the fiddle
    And the merry love to dance

  • Pete Baker


    “Continuing our theme on humour..”


    Hmmm… talk about revisionism.. ;op

  • Rory


    As Socrates is the philosphers’ philosopher so Dodd is the comedians’ comedian. It is almost impossible to get into one of Dodd’s gigs for all the professional comedians cramming in to watch the master. Like Socrates with Plato – don’t ask us how, don’t ask us why – he just is. Mere mortals only sit and gape in wonder.

    Oh, and those of you who have only seen the Diddy Man Dodd or “Tears for Souveneirs” songster – forbear to scoff – you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet – nor are likely to.

  • Ghost of PDN Past

    Trying to stir it up again with the humorless, eh? Some folk will now surely point out that Socrates was the real Republican and the Platonists will object and the Calvinists will weigh in until the Hobbesianists interject until…………

    (repeat as unncessary)

    Hang in there, Mick.

  • páid

    Rory, you’re beginning to sound like Eoghan Harris 😉

    Our Knotty Ash correspondent reckons

    I think that comedy is a perception of incongruities, something slightly off-centre’.

    like his tax return?

  • Greenflag

    A man is shipwrecked off the remote coast of Northern Ireland . He finds himself on an empty strand and after wandering for a few hours he comes at last to a village where he sees a gable wall on which he sees a message painted in white’

    ‘Fuck the Pope ‘

    ‘The Lord be praised ‘ he cries


  • Greenflag

    What is the difference between a materialist , an idealist and a unionist ?

    A materialist is in a green room , chasing a non existent green cat and he knows there is no cat .

    An idealist is in a green room chasing a non existent green cat and he believes there is a green cat .

    The unionist is in a green room , chasing a non existent green cat , and he keeps finding it !

  • Greenflag

    2020 AD ,

    A Fenian drunk was rolling around on the ground in front of a statue of Ian Paisley in Ballymena .

    ‘I’ll never drink again ‘ wailed the Fenian .

    ‘I’ll never touch another drop of the devil’s buttermilk ‘ he cried aloud .

    ‘Why do you say that ?’ asked a policeman .

    ‘I can see two of them.’ said yer man .

  • A Hasidic rabbi walks with a frog perched on his shoulder walks into a pub.

    The barman stares at him and asks, “Where in the hell did you get that?”

    “Brooklyn”, retorts the frog, “They got ’em on every street there”

  • Greenflag

    During a break at a sumit meeting in Helsinki in the old cold war days President Carter who enjoyed collecting and telling jokes about himself asked Soviet leader Brezhnev whether he also collected jokes and stories against himself and the Soviet regime .

    ‘I certainly do,’ replied Brezhnev .

    Do you have many?’ asked Carter

    ‘Two camps full, ‘ said Brezhnev

  • Greenflag

    An Englishman , a Scotsman and a Sinn Feiner were arguing about which of them was the bravest .

    ‘We’re the bravest’ said the Englishman ,’ because even though one in ten of us drowns at sea the Royal Navy is never short of recruits ‘

    ‘Nonsense ‘ protested the Scotsman .’We are the bravest because although one in every six dies of cirrhosis of the liver and heart disease we still drink whiskey and wolf down fried Mars bars ‘

    ‘You are both wrong’ said the Sinn Feiner .

    ‘We are the bravest , because even though one in every three three of us is an informer we still tell jokes about our leaders’

  • Christopher Eastwood

    Ali G: So is you Irish?

    Sammy Wilson: No, i’m British

    Ali G: So is you here on holiday or something?

    Tssss… I never tire of Sammy’s reaction. Priceless 😉

  • circles

    10 was good.
    The punchline of 11 wasn’t tight enough – too sloppy.

    Funny that King Diddy is back – I was thinking about him just the other day. If I am honest though – he does do comedy from another generation. His analysis of modern technicians does sounds a wee bit like sour grapes even. There were always dirty joke tellers, its not just a modern thing. And not all of the modern stuff is xenophobic grannies vomitting over children at the village fete (Little Britain).
    The remarkable thing about him though was his influence on rap, particularly Sean Coombes.




    What’s the secret of good comedy?

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Maybe this is worth a read.

  • As well as this too.

  • Rory

    Really, Gonzo and Smilin’ Jim, both these are absolutely tasteless. I must admit I do like tasteless.

    An old down and out wino was lifted by the army and brought to Castlereagh and ordered to strip. As he peeled off one grimy old coat only to reveal an older and grimier one underneath and a torn dirty old jumper beneath that. So it proceeded, one tattered layer over another until he revealed a schoolbag hanging over a well holed pullover.

  • Aidan

    I went to the zoo yesterday, but all they had there was one little dog.

    It was a shitzu.

  • Greenflag

    ‘The punchline of 11 wasn’t tight enough – too sloppy.’

    True 🙂 I’ll work on it .

    BTW I was never a Ken Dodds fan . Les Dawson 🙂 Tommy Cooper 🙂 Dave Allen 🙂 Niall Toibin 🙂 Harry Enfield all come to mind .

  • esmereldavillalobos

    Can we talk about how good Bill Hicks was again? TAFKABO’s a big fan 😉

    If we’re talking about joke tellers as opposed to today’s stand up then Bob Monkhouse is right up there.

    Dara O’Brian live is well worth the money for 2 hours stream of conciousness stuff (makes it look all ad-libbed but the structure is there if you look hard enough) while a guy called Roger Monkhouse who’s compere at the comedy store occasionally (not sure if he’s been on TV) is wonderful if you like your comedy droll.

    BTW, I did chuckle at Gonzo’s post.




    Just in case youdidn’t get it the last time we discussed Hicks.
    I am a big fan of his comedic talent, I’m not so keen on his world views, which I find seriously flawed and trite.
    That people take his views seriously is the biggest joke of all. Bill often mused upon the ridiulous idea that we should be lectured on world events by rock stars and the like. I think a few of his fans missed the whole point completely.

  • esmereldavillalobos

    Sheesh! Only a gentle wind-up!