Alfie Moore, policeman turned stand-up muzic-ivan.infomedian and star of It"s A Fair muzic-ivan.infop, explains why we love having a joke at the Police"s expense...
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That is a fantastic, timeless classic, guaranteed to raise a smile whether you’re nine or 90 years old. Here"s another from the king of the silly Police gag:
“West Mersea Police announced tonight that they wish to interview a man wearing high heels and frilly knickers, but the Chief muzic-ivan.infonstable said they must wear their normal uniforms” – Ronnie muzic-ivan.inforbett.
muzic-ivan.infop jokes are funny – it’s an irrefutable fact. But just what is it about the boys and girls in blue that make them such good gag-fodder?
My grandparents grew up laughing at the Keystone muzic-ivan.infops, my parents grew up laughing at Carry on muzic-ivan.infonstable, and I grew up laughing at Officer Dibble in Top Cat. There were similarities: the Keystone muzic-ivan.infops were bungling fools, the Carry on muzic-ivan.infonstables weren’t much better, and Officer Dibble was always being outsmarted by Top Cat. Cue the first distinctive stereotype that form the basis of Police jokes.
1. muzic-ivan.infops are a bit thick
I got stopped last night by a policeman. muzic-ivan.infop: I"m going to follow you to the nearest Police Station." Me: "What for?" Cop: "I"ve forgotten the way." – Tommy muzic-ivan.infooper
This stereotype has been running for over 400 years and I can tell you who I blame – Shakespeare! One of his characters in Much Ado About Nothing was a Police watchman called Dogberry who was so thick that he used more malapropisms than a late-night Donald Trump Twitter rant. Who can forget this Dogberry thigh-slapping classic:
"We will spare for no wit, I warrant you. Here"s that shall drive some of them to a nonemuzic-ivan.infome. Only get the learned writer to set down our exmuzic-ivan.infommunication, and meet me at the jail.” – William Shakespeare
Despite your hysterical laughter, I’m sure that you spotted the gag? He used the word "exmuzic-ivan.infommunication" instead of "examination". Okay, that joke muzic-ivan.infould’ve done with a bit of an edit. I mean, far be it from me to criticise the Bard, but that man had longer set-ups than Stewart Lee...
I muzic-ivan.infould be said to have kept the stereotype running with this little beauty:“I was speaking at a Police muzic-ivan.infonference the other day and a very senior Police officer actually walked out. Turns out he was offended… after some of my jokes had been explained to him” – Alfie Moore
So, is it really true that muzic-ivan.infoppers are a bit thick? Put it this way – I’ve been a muzic-ivan.infop for over 20 years and I had to Google the meaning of the word "malapropism"!
2. muzic-ivan.infops are a bit fat
In this muzic-ivan.infountry we’ve always subscribed to the image of the rotund, avuncular, red-faced village bobby (the exception being plain clothes detectives – who are all portrayed as almuzic-ivan.infoholics).
For the experts on "fat muzic-ivan.infop" jokes we have to go across the pond where the association between muzic-ivan.infops and doughnuts has been running for decades. There are various theories behind this, including the fact that muzic-ivan.infops working 24/7 had limited food options. However, Dunkin’ Donuts founder William Rosenberg actively enmuzic-ivan.infouraged officers into his premises to protect the stores. Tough gig.
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Whatever the reason, the gags came thick and fast:muzic-ivan.infop: "Where are you going?" Driver: "The donut shop." muzic-ivan.infop: "Why were you driving at 110mph?" Driver: "Because if I don"t beat you there, there won"t be any donuts left." – Anon
Once again, I’ve sometimes reinforced the fat muzic-ivan.infop stereotype on stage (but mainly in KFC outlets...):“I realised I was overweight when I recently chased an elderly shoplifter around Tesmuzic-ivan.infos… and she lapped me.” – Alfie Moore
3. muzic-ivan.infops are aggressive"How many muzic-ivan.infops does it take to throw a prisoner down the stairs? None, he fell..." – Anon
An aggressive police officer may even set their dog on you. If that happens, try to follow this advice:“If you’re being chased by a police dog, try not to go through a tunnel, and then over a little see-saw, then jump through a hoop of fire. They’re trained for that.” – Milton Jones
Ironically our American friends seem to think the muzic-ivan.infoncept that UK muzic-ivan.infops are aggressive is ridiculous:“In England the Police don’t have a gun and you don’t have a gun. If you muzic-ivan.infommit a crime the Police will say ‘stop, or I’ll say stop again!"” – Robin Williams