I’ve watched a little of Tosh.0 and that’s enough to see that Daniel Tosh throws out a lot of racist jokes.
I supposed if he was pressed on the point, he’d say he was doing it “ironically”. But I’m not seeing it. There’s nothing in the context of the show that justifies a claim like that. He’s not playing a character or telling jokes in a way that make you think about what was said. He just tells racist jokes for the laughs.
No, my sense of irony works just fine. That’s why I see that Tosh is not actually using any irony. Tosh’s winking is just his way of saying, “I’m going to tell an offensive joke and you’ll laugh but we’ll get away with it because we’ll all pretend it’s ironic somehow.”
Now Borat - that was irony. He would say racist things but the point was that we would laugh at him for being a racist not laugh with him in appreciation.
But Tosh isn’t doing that. He’s just telling racist jokes and his audience is laughing at them.
It’s not just “irony.” It’s hard to get a sense from just Tosh.0, but if you listen to his stand-up, it’s more about getting people to laugh at really offensive things, and then they feel uncomfortable about the fact that they just laughed at it.
It gets a lot darker on his CD than on his show, and he’s even worse (in a good way) live. I actually got a chance to see him at a free show when he was just starting out, and he was amazing. He’s basically a modern day interpretation of 90’s insult comics.
We’re entering the post-“racist”* era in comedy. Young people today are very noticeably less racist than my peers were in high school just 11-15 years ago. They realize this and are basically making fun of us old fogies. I know a gay teenager who goes around calling people “niggerfag.”
Tosh gets this. Which kind of makes sense, since I would guess his writers are probably mostly in their early 20s.
I’m not really fully on board with it-- not because it offends me but just because I usually don’t find it funny. But hey, anything is better than the “IT’S SO RANDOM!” humor that dominated most of the '00s.
*as we knew racism
Ehhh…I’m not sure those irony settings are as calibrated as you think they are. IMO, we weren’t supposed to be laughing at Borat for being racist. We were laughing with Borat at the racism he was pointing out in others. But, hey, it’s all subjective, I guess…
Racist jokes are a staple of comedy. I don’t think anyone has to wonder how someone ‘gets away with it’. There are plenty of hilarious threads on this board that have some of the funniest racist jokes I ever heard. No one is getting away with anything. Everyone is just…laughing.