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Is there a single comic on the market who isn’t fatphobic? Other than me, after all | Sofie Hagen

I was spying anonymously in a Fb fan group for a widely known comedy podcast once I noticed a put up alleging {that a} in style feminist comic was making actually offensive fats jokes as a part of her present. It was a warning to others, advising them to not go and see the present. The creator additionally requested the group if anybody might suggest comedians who don’t do “fats jokes”.

I began pondering: who would I like to recommend? (Other than myself, after all, but when I like to recommend myself too many occasions in that group, they’ll begin to realise that it’s me behind the faux title.)

A “fats joke” is a joke about fats folks the place the fats persons are the punchline. It’s when a skinny actor clothes up in a fatsuit, to mock fats folks – resembling in Mates, after we see a younger Monica, AKA Fats Monica. It’s the comic who mentioned that the one aggressive sport fats folks ought to ever take part in is a pie-eating contest. I as soon as heard a comic joke that fats folks can solely ever get laid after assembly somebody in a nightclub if it’s previous 3am, as a result of, you already know, then perhaps folks can be drunk sufficient to have intercourse with them. I had slept with this very comic six months earlier than, each of us very sober.

As with all jokes that depend on boring stereotypes, there are not any new concepts or angles: we eat an excessive amount of; we don’t train; we’re unintelligent, determined and lazy.

Developing with fats jokes is the best factor on this planet – I do know, as a result of that was all I did once I first began out in comedy. My jokes have been completely about how a lot I ate, how I by no means did train, how wobbly my abdomen was. What I used to be actually saying was: “Don’t fear, I do know it’s not OK that I appear to be this. I’m not right here to problem the established order.” Then we might all loosen up.

After I educated myself on physique positivity and the fats acceptance motion, I began seeing myself as worthy of being alive – and once I stopped seeing fatness as an inherently unhealthy factor, I finished doing these jokes. I didn’t, and nonetheless don’t, want to hurt folks with my materials.

I additionally realised that comedians who do make fats jokes by no means really tackle the fats folks within the viewers. We’ll fortunately say: “the ladies within the viewers …” or: “Is anybody from Eire?”, to acknowledge the presence of the group we’re about to mock. However, by no means when it’s about fats folks. It’s they. These fats folks, they are like this and they are like that. Fats persons are by no means anticipated to be within the room.

It’s one factor listening to an individual with a microphone making a joke that dehumanises you, however it’s one other factor to listen to 400 folks round you snigger at it.

So I’ve been attempting to provide you with the title of a single comic I’d totally belief to not make fats jokes. There are lots I’d belief to not do it deliberately, and there are these I’m 95% sure wouldn’t do it. However I by no means watch a comedy present with out anticipating one thing fatphobic to come back up. The comic may not even mock fats folks immediately, however they may announce that they’ve misplaced weight and the viewers cheers: good on you for not being as fats.

I really like (most) comedians and I respect anybody who makes an attempt standup as a profession, because it’s an extremely bizarre job that may get actually lonely; we want one another. Which is why it sucks that even a few of my heroes have internalised fatphobia. It makes it onerous to not really feel very, very drained and unwelcome.

I’m proud when fats folks say they really feel secure in my viewers. Would I additionally wish to be instructed that I’m the funniest comic in the entire world? The sexiest and smartest and prettiest? Positive, however I’ve to imagine that’s implicit. For now, I’m joyful simply to see myself beneficial in Fb teams, the place they don’t know I’m watching, because the comic whose present it’s secure to go to as a fats particular person.

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