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After Life - Ricky Gervais

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Added to Netflix, a six-part series.

 

After Life follows Tony, who has a perfect life before his wife suddenly dies. After contemplating suicide, he then decides to live long enough to punish the world for his wife's death by literally saying and doing whatever he wants to. Although he thinks of it as sort of a superpower, the situation turns tricky when everyone around him starts trying to make him a better person again.

 

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If that's the trailer I saw the other day, how come ginger haired people/kids are fair game to take the piss out of but different races/religion/sexuality/etc isn't?

 

What's the difference? You can't control what colour hair you're born with.

 

Plus this will be over-sentimental shite like everything else he's done in the last 15 years.

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Only watched the first ep and its very 'Gervais without Merchant' - its more dark than funny but I enjoyed it more than Derek or Life's too Short.

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Gervais is dead to me after he said this in his Netflix special last year (about Caitlyn Jenner):

 

Quote

“ She’s always identified as a woman. That means she’s a woman. Fine, if that’s the rules. If you feel you’re a woman, you are. I’m not a bigot who thinks having all that done is science going too far. In fact, I’ve always identified as a chimp. Well, I am a chimp. If I say I’m a chimp, I am a chimp. And don’t ever dead-name me, from now on you call me Bobo. I’m going to have species realignment. I’ll be legally a chimp… I’ll be able to use chimp toilets.”

 

He is peddling Jim Davidson-level transphobic shit and deserves to be cancelled. It's a 15-minute opener that gets its jokes from repeatedly referring to Caitlyn Jenner as "Bruce" and punching down at the trans community for shit, cheap laughs. He's done.

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It wasn't like that at all. he was taking shots at Bruce Jenner for being a cunt, he doesn't represent every trans person.

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34 minutes ago, dave7g said:

It wasn't like that at all. he was taking shots at Bruce Jenner for being a cunt, he doesn't represent every trans person.

 

Right, so if a gay person is a cunt, I can make jokes about shirt lifting and AIDS because they're a cunt?

 

He deadnamed her repeatedly, then referred to the fact he deadnamed her, then made a terrible transphobic joke about gender identity.

 

I don't get how that's acceptable, regardless of Caitlyn Jenner's character.

 

It's cool though, you just deadnamed her too in your reply, top effort.

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16 minutes ago, Isaac said:

 

Right, so if a gay person is a cunt, I can make jokes about shirt lifting and AIDS because they're a cunt?

 

He deadnamed her repeatedly, then referred to the fact he deadnamed her, then made a terrible transphobic joke about gender identity.

 

I don't get how that's acceptable, regardless of Caitlyn Jenner's character.

 

It's cool though, you just deadnamed her too in your reply, top effort.

 

Ok so deadnaming was invented what 2 years ago. Bruce is what she was known as for SIXTY SIX years and was most famous as. Also I called her Bruce in context with Ricky's joke. 

 

You'd swear I got away with manslaughter.

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Watched 3 episodes, enjoying it but it's a weird one. It seems stuck in the past, mostly feels like Derek with hints of Andy from Extras. It has some pretty awkward unintentional cringe moments, mainly relating to the wife sections that repeatably try to make 'sad' moments funny in similar forced ways (i.e swearing or cussing each other).

 

That said each episode does have some great moments, I especially like the postman bits. This show seems at it's best when it's trying to be Curb but Gervais keeps wanting to dial up the emotion, which normally I would applaud for a comedy but it's very difficult to get that right. On his own, Gervais really struggles to pull off 'emotion' in his various solo series.

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21 minutes ago, dave7g said:

 

Ok so deadnaming was invented what 2 years ago. Bruce is what she was known as for SIXTY SIX years and was most famous as. Also I called her Bruce in context with Ricky's joke. 

 

You'd swear I got away with manslaughter.

 

Being transphobic was invented a lot longer than two years ago. Do I have to paint a picture for you?

 

Imagine this. Your mate, after years of mental health issues, has made the decision to transition, but is fairly early on in the process. They've come over for a few beers, you've both always liked The Office, so you stick on the Ricky Gervais Netflix special. Immediately you're both greeted with 15 minutes of Ricky referring to Caitlyn as Bruce, making jokes about being a 'pre-op chimp called Bobo', and other transphobic garbage.

 

Would you lightly punch your mate on the arm and say "chin up mate, it's only because Bruce is a cunt and because people over-reacted to that joke! We know you aren't all like that"?

 

Or would you instantly spot that Ricky Gervais, a rich white hetrosexual successful man, is punching down at a minority that typically suffer horrendous physical and mental abuse, just for some shit cheap laughs?

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9 minutes ago, Capwn said:

Watched 3 episodes, enjoying it but it's a weird one. It mostly seems stuck in the past, mostly feels like Derek with hints of Andy from Extras. It has some pretty awkward unintentional cringe moments, mainly relating to the wife moments that repeatably try to make 'sad' moments funny in similar forced ways (i.e swearing or cussing each other).

 

That said each episode does have some great moments, I especially like the postman bits. This show seems at it's best when it's trying to be Curb but Gervais keeps wanting to dial up the emotion, which normally I would applaud for a comedy but it's very difficult to get that right. On his own, Gervais really struggles to pull off 'emotion' in his various solo series.

That's because Gervais is a poor actor. He lacks any sort of subtlety or nuance in his performance. He relies on cheap easy tricks and caricature to make his performance. The result will always be samey as he is using the same gimmicks and "tells".

 

He is a good scriptwriter when reined in (usually by merchant) he just needs to stop acting in the stuff he writes - also see Seth Macfarlane.

 

EDIT - with regard to the transphobic jokes - he also falls into the trap of believing the adage that you can make jokes about anything without understanding the actual meaning of the phrase. As it happens I believe it is true but it takes a talented standup comic to craft and tell those jokes that are on the edges of tastelessness - Gervais is not one.

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I watched it live with 10,000 other people Dublin. None of them were transphobic that I could tell, none of them were offended and everyone understood the context. Ricky went on to make jokes about the IRA, guess what, nobody was offended and everyone laughed. He's a comedian. Things can be funny.

 

You come in here calling for his head having not watched one second of after life where he deals with depression and suicide in a very understandable way. He makes a sex worker into a compassionate and lovely character. He has a junkie tell his side of his story where you can understand where he was coming from completely. But because you heard on twitter that made a joke about a trans people, he should stop making shows like this that might help other people going through tough times so that you feel validated.

 

Watch Humanity. The whole point if it is that you should be allowed to joke about EVERYTHING as long as it's not done in a hateful way.

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May I suggest that the transphobia conversation is taken to another thread? Very worthy of discussion but this isn’t the place for it, regardless of what your views are on Ricky Gervais.

 

As for After Life, I enjoyed it overall, but it wasn’t amazing. I think my favourite part was the fish finger scene in the cafe.

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30 minutes ago, Chadruharazzeb said:

 

He was making jokes about Caitlin Jenner not trans people. He was making a joke about the fact he accidentally deadnamed her before he'd heard about deadnaming. He was making a joke about being a chimp because he'd made a joke about inventing species identity. He was making jokes about having to constantly defend and justify himself to internet residents like you who get insulted on behalf of others.

 

Like he says, just because you're offended doesn't mean you're right.

As I said that only works if the jokes are funny and well crafted in my opinion they were neither. He is a clumsy standup using clumsy phrasing to make edgy humour which often just offends without being funny. Standup can be funny and offensive and skate the edge, he falls over it far too often.

 

As for the argument put elsewhere that 10000 people who paid to see him thought he was funny. Well that is a fairly specious argument. I am sure lots of people pay to see Jim Davidson and laugh at his jokes. Doesn't mean he is a good standup or not politically incorrect/offensive.

 

Popularity does not guarantee quality or indeed whether the humour is edgy and amusing or just falls over the line too often.

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I just watched the whole of this in one afternoon. Ricky Gervais has been getting on my tits in everything he's done since the middle of The Office, but I really enjoyed this.

Who knew that could happen, eh?

I know it's a totally different thing, but it had a bit of that gentle Detectorists feel to it for me.

 

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Wasn't expecting much from this but after four episodes it's fantastic. Bitter sweet with some very dark gallows humour. My girlfriend was in floods of tears.

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9 hours ago, multiclunk said:

It had a bit of that gentle Detectorists feel to it for me.

 

OK I'm interested now.

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I find this very hard to watch, not because its awkward or sad but just a bit dull - plus the lighting seems really strange, it looks like super bright summer all the time but everybody is wearing winter clothes.

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Gervais isn't transphobic and nor are people laughing at these jokes. Just because it's about trans people doesn't instantly make it transphobic. If we stop laughing at jokes about particular groups of people then comedy is dead. For me Gervais is just saying it's fine to do whatever you like (I don't care, I'm not against people transitioning), but don't expect society to go to extreme measures just so you don't suffer even the slightest bit of discomfort (deadnaming is a ridiculous concept).  

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I don’t know if I can say I enjoyed it because it’s basically not that far off my life and I don’t particularly enjoy that most of the time! It’s quite effective as a portrait of grief and depression and how hard it is to get out of that because you don’t really care anymore, though.

 

Taken as a comedy, it didn’t get a single laugh out of me. I doubt that was the result Gervais was aiming for with those jokes but going back to the point above about why is it okay to take the piss out of people with ginger hair, a lot of what Tony did wasn’t okay so it makes sense in that context. Where a smart retort is needed, all his sense of futility and bitterness has left him with is to call a kid a ‘tubby ginger cunt’.

 

That said, Tony’s humour wasn’t that great beforehand and if I were his wife, I’d have got a bit fed up with those practical jokes...

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47 minutes ago, Hylian said:

...but don't expect society to go to extreme measures just so you don't suffer even the slightest bit of discomfort (deadnaming is a ridiculous concept).  

 

Why is deadnaming a ‘ridiculous concept’? Surely referring to someone who has transitioned by their preferred name is just common courtesy and I’d hardly describe it as an ‘extreme measure’. Going out of your way to keep referring to someone by their old name seems unnecessarily prickish to me.

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Can we please keep all this woke millennial angst to its natural habitat, in the 'Off Topic' section..

 

 

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