There is, of course, that famous old saying (usually credited to Janet Street-Porter) that “Comedy is the new Rock ‘n’ Roll”.
Mr Methane’s view is:
“Comedy was not, is not and never will be on a par with rock ‘n’ roll stardom. You do not wake up in the morning humming a joke you heard fifteen years ago because a joke does not take you back in your mind those fifteen years – unless you a comedy trainspotter.
“Music finds pathways into a nation’s soul and gets very deeply rooted there. It is valued as a great work of art by those who listen to it.
“Comedy, though a very serious business and labour of love for the artist, is generally seen as nothing more than a throw-away laugh by the consumer.
“Ringo Starr was not the only drummer in the Beatles – and, according to a joke by John Lennon, he wasn’t the best either – but let’s just say you have a choice between Ringo Starr and someone currently at the very top of the comedy tree coming round for dinner – maybe that Michael McIntyre bloke.
“It’s going go be Ringo Star every time for 90% of the British population. That is just how it is.
“We ain’t rock stars. We are the comedy arseholes of entertainment. In my case, literally.”
Is Mr Methane talking out of his arse (something he surprisingly rarely does) or clearing the air?
My thoughts are divided.
Comedians certainly rarely get respect as performing artists whereas singers do – although the increasing amount of money swilling around the upper, rarefied reaches of comedy success may be slowly changing that.
Nothing breeds admiration more than millions in the bank.