Why so Serious?

In what appears to be typical of the legacy media and establishment in general, the local comedy festival here in Kilkenny has gone off without a hitch. In fact it’s gone off without anything really, Little to no advertising, no buzz, build up or furore. No street acts, no open mics. The same 10-15 acts were spread across the weekend, on repeat, and reserved only to the bigger venues. The smaller pubs were forgotten. I think I saw one banner going across Parliament street which was grubby and folded over hiding half of its message. To give the reader some context, years ago the cat laugh festival was a huge deal in Kilkenny. Hotels and BnB’s would be full to the brim, camper vans parked all over. Tents in peoples gardens etc. Celebrities would attend this event in their droves. I remember one year watching Adam Hills live in the River Court Hotel. I Managed to end up sitting beside comedy legend Dom Irrera in the fourth row. I would regularly get a chance to meet comedians like Colm Murphy, Ed Byrne, Rich Hall….. the list is endless. I remember one time seeing Dave McSavage busking an improv comedy session outside the AIB bank at the Parade in the middle of the day and a crowd of hundreds gathered around him. I would attend about 8-9 gigs over the weekend including smaller improv and open mics. On a few occasions I myself took part in open mics and improv acts. Nobody was safe, everybody was on the menu. So what is up? Why the lack of ambition this time around ?

I have my own opinion on what’s going on which I will say, unfortunately for the begrudging reader, a very well formed opinion from years of attending these festivals and seeing this decay coming along time ago. Most will fully blame the Woke Comedy Complex for the poor show running of this event but it goes far deeper than that. I will deal with the wokeism first. Comedy has been decimated by change in public tolerance to comedy at the expense of others. In particular, minorities, degeneracy, the church, islam and in general ….. well observational and reactionary comedy aimed at the topic of the day. These particular avenues of expression have now become targets of Controlled-speech activism. People who believe the State should have the power to silence criticism, which is one of the core pillars of comedy, have stamped their feet for years gaining ground on the freedoms of people such as comedians and social commentators effectively neutering them and making them less edgy, witty and effective behind a mic. Most of the comedians prior to the woketopian uprising had free license to rip the piss, Tommy Tiernan being a great example. Tommy Tiernan is a man who built his career off the back of racial stereotypes, mockery and disparagement. I personally found him hilarious back in the day. What we see nowadays is a completely watered down, compliant little shit telling pc jokes for the clapping seals. Tommy was here this weekend and if it wasn’t for his new teethless brand of approved comedy I would have gone to see him. If it wasn’t for my lifelong fascination with comedy I wouldn’t have known a single other name who attended this weekend's festival. Oddly enough the army of youtube comedians, who prayed at the alter of of the establishment and pushed the mandated themes and propaganda, seem to have been completely discarded.

It has been a very long time since the Cats Laugh has been great. Kilkenny City is usually a town with great organisational skills behind the scenes. What I can assume is that this festival has been underfunded and left in the hands of fools. Why is RTE not at this event live streaming on the player? Why does the event organiser themselves not live stream this and charge a fiver? 100,000 streams would be very achievable. That would just be too much like common sense though wouldn’t it.

Another issue is that there was no connection to the locals. Where are the homegrown comedians? I can think of 20-30 comedians based in Ireland that could have gigged here on top of what was already there and it would have really added to it. As well as this local street performers should have been involved and strategically placed to enhance the atmosphere. The entire Parade, usually a hub for markets and public get togethers was vacant all weekend. A Speakers Corner would have been ideal. The creativity, improvisation and ballsiness normally associated with comedy events is replaced with ultra safe administration and planning. The organisers of the event, Aiken Promotions, are apparently the largest and most well established promotions company in Ireland, and therein lies the problem. There is no loyalty to Kilkenny or understanding of the city. This event was a numbers game. A great festival sold out to a corporate bean counting machine. Probably one of 15-20 events they were running at the same time. This aspect of the industry combined with the comedians themselves colouring within the lines makes for a terrible product.

Another factor in this equation is the absolute state of Comedy Central. Once a launchpad for all the greats it has now become an anti-white marxist, only, production. every single person is a gay minority and rehashes a paraphrased version of what every other cupcake complains about. I enjoy all avenues of comedy but when the very lifeblood of comedy, free speech, is attacked by the comedians themselves then the jokes become few and far between. It is the things you “shouldn’t” say that are the funniest and this has now become so hard to find you have to suffer through entire Netflix specials to get a handful of laughs. Years ago a comedian by the name of Doug Stanhope got booed off stage by a crowd for comments he made about pedophelia. The joke was definitely in poor taste but that is entirely what Stanhope is about, depravity. This ability to get up, test your material and be booed off or cheered is what I believe is essential to a comedy festival. Not letting people up in the first place is what kills it. Around that time Stanhope and other world renowned comedians trusted this festival and often proclaimed it to be their favorite of all the festivals worldwide. It was the festival's response to these edgy comedians that has caused it to decline. You can see the festival's decline by viewing the historical brochures of the event here and comparing them to the current low energy line up here.

Like I said at the start of this article I don’t entirely blame the far-left for this. I blame the comedians who have allowed this to happen. Where were these guys when the mask laws and vaccine mandates were being rolled out? or the pedo teachers unions sneaking debauchery into the primary syllabus. That’s when we needed mockery the most. I can only imagine what Bill Hicks or George Carlin would have said if they were here to witness this much window licking. The line-up of this weekend's tame affair contained none of these kinds of unforgiving observationalist minds. For this reason I abstained from attending this weekend.

Now I want to clarify at this point that the gigs were probably amazing, all of the people who did perform are professionals at what they do, Neil Delamere, Andrew Maxwell and Colm Murphy in particular hold a warm place in my heart having laughed endlessly at their efforts on shows such as the Blizzard of Odd, The Panel and Mock the Week. Monday nights on RTE2 back in the day were glorious. I just know that they will be off the boil and scripted in these modern times. It’s the comedians who are not in attendance that really pisses me off the most. None of the American, British or Australian old guard were in attendance. On top of that there was no love shown to a certain comedian who really needed this. One of my Favourite comedians is Al Porter. Al had a bit of a legal problem which he overcame in recent years and last year declared he would be making a return to comedy. He is not someone who will hold his tongue and tells it like it is. He would not be welcome at such an event it seems. Being gay isn’t enough these days to get you in the door. You have to be willing to sell your soul.

Surprisingly, there was an absence of the expected diversity hires. I was expecting a whitewash. The expected buzzcut Lesbians complaining about the patriarchy weren’t plastered all over this thing. The Minorities were non-existent. There was a token black dude but other than that nothing. They didn’t even bother to do the diversity thing. The usual line up probably agreed to do Ukraine jokes and Orange Man Bad routines. Surely Martin Beans Ward should have been involved or Fabu? Where was Darren Conway? The lack of a place for Foil Arms and Hogg baffles me to no end. These are all very entertaining people who I feel should have been there. Were they asked? Again questions arise that lead back to the organisers. It seems to be one of the laziest attempts at a comedy festival in living memory.

With the Netflix Special comedy market out there at the moment we could also be seeing the death of organic comedy festivals. Like I said there could be more to the failure of this weekend's festival than meets the eye but a bank holiday weekend in Kilkenny with the Cat Laugh Festival on should not result in empty streets. The entire town was no different to the average Friday or Saturday night any time of the year. Almost no Signage or promotion was visible. Less than half of the small number of gigs sold out.

We The People are hoping to organise a Caint Saor comedy night soon to get some of those willing to say the unsayable and bring back the old days of absolute hysterics and hijinks in a live setting. My view on the matter is that comedy with restrictions is not comedy but propaganda. People who entertain you conditionally aim to condition you. A comedy act with no variety and a predictable recurring central theme supportive of illogical positions held by the very people we should be mocking is the antithesis of what comedy is all about. It’s Lazy, Contrived and shillish. It needs to be countered with unfiltered observational comedy from the mic and right into peoples faces.

To be the butt of one's joke is the price you must pay to enjoy the same at the expense of another. Bullying, say the facists, you’re bullying us. If there was ever a time to bully a section of society it is now. Being told some home truths about themselves would surely eliminate their oblivious espousals. Comedy is the measure of a free society and often seems to be the primary target of the beginnings of a fledgling facist regime. So afraid of mockery are these oligarchs and ideologues that they will spare no expense nor shame to shut it down. The horde has recently gone after Jimmy Carr with none of the legacy media coming to his aid. When the face of British comedy is left to fend for himself you know that the rest of the industry is on the chopping block. It’s a shame to watch a section of society, who are so well armed to deal with this, lay still while the vultures pick at their carcass.

Thankfully one of the all time great, Left wing, comedic voices has spoken up. Bill Maher has finally clipped the wings of LGBTQ mafia and it was fucking glorious. It was a very clear “I’ve been dying to say that “ moment and it was done in typical Bill Maher fashion. Comedians are manning the stations for the battle that’s about to come. I fully believe this festival is the calm before the storm as far as comedy goes. I for one will relish every minute of what they are about to do to the woke brigade. I feel that we are on the precipice of a total collapse of public support for the obnoxious and autocratic facist global collective and comedy will be the Vanguard of this reckoning. The good people of this world will have the last laugh.

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