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Do You Prefer American or British Humor?

In a recent interview, funny British comedian Ricky Gervais compared British television to American television and concluded that American TV is funnier right now. He put it this way:

We've got some poor copies of Curb Your Enthusiasm, some poor copies of Entourage and some poor copies of Seinfeld. With a few exceptions the Americans seem to be ahead of the game.

It seems like a pretty strong swipe at British comedy from the man who created The Office, and it got me thinking about the differences between British and American humor. I tend to associate a dry, witty, and somewhat cerebral brand of comedy to our friends across the Atlantic. On the other hand, I think of American humor as broader and often more physical.

Given Gervais's statements — and since we're approaching a certain holiday that marks a split between the US and the UK — I figured there was no better time to ask: Do you prefer one country's humor over the other? Or can you even tell a difference?


Join The Conversation
megankate02 megankate02 8 years
Well i'm British myself so i have to say that British humour is better. That was what i was bought up with and what i am used to but American Humour still makes me laugh!
Midnight-Harlow Midnight-Harlow 8 years
I mostly get my entertainment over seas then home grown.
eveday eveday 8 years
Jazzytummy, I :LOVE: The Black Adder too!!!
eveday eveday 8 years
I'm not sure about this...I mean, I love both: sometimes I prefer the American series (like Frasier) and sometimes I prefer the British ones(like Absolutely Fabulous). However, Monty Python -- my-all time favorite series and movies -- is British so...perhaps I like British comedies better. I swear whenever I watch the stoning scene in Monty Python's Life Of Brian I laugh so hard I almost pee my pants.
Allyace Allyace 8 years
I like both, but I think I prefer American just b/c I understand our slang and "inside jokes" better. British chick lit is usuallly funnier though!
jazzytummy jazzytummy 8 years
Blackadder is still one of my fave series, and it's been over for years. Rowan Atkinson and a pre-House Hugh Laurie, Miranda Richardson, Steven Fry....just too funny. If you love Hugh Laurie and want to see him in a great comedic role, rent Blackadder the Third. He is hysterical!
Soapboxer Soapboxer 8 years
Brits will ALWAYS be tops in bringing the funny.
c4rolin3 c4rolin3 8 years
I like both and I'm a Brit Chick :) I was actually surprised at how much I like the American version of the office which I've been watching a lot of lately. :)
thescott thescott 8 years
Really? British Humor used to be very dry and witty, but over the last 5 years or so, it's descended into juvenile sex jokes and poor inch-deep observations overall. American Humor, on the other hand, has moved leaps and bounds forward. Look at stuff like Arrested Development, 30 Rock, and our version of the Office. It's lightyears more clever and thoughtful than anything to come out of the UK recently.
Pallas-Athena Pallas-Athena 8 years
I love both!
leslievanhouten leslievanhouten 8 years
I love AbFab!! I can do without Benny Hill though Withnail & I, the ultimate british comedy!
simplyfab87 simplyfab87 8 years
I love both.
Alithyra Alithyra 8 years
Usually I prefer British humour, but there are some real duds in the mix. AbFab, anyone? Ugh. Some semblance of British TV is why I spring for the upgraded cable and get BBCAmerica. It's not BBC1 or even BBC3, but it's all I got.
michaeluvnikita michaeluvnikita 8 years
spicyaroma spicyaroma 8 years
spicyaroma spicyaroma 8 years
Well, I'm British, and I've got to say I love both. I don't how to describe American humour, but you've got Tina Fey, Paul Rudd, Jon Stewart and Judd Apatow whom I adore. But we've got Alan Carr, Ricky, Russell Brand, Russell Howard, Jonathan Ross etc and they've hilarious. Dry, smart and witty :)
Linda-McP Linda-McP 8 years
British humor is so full of wit and wisdom which is why I prefer it to American humor by far.
cg130 cg130 8 years
British humour, in my opinion, is almost always better. It usually relies on intellect rather than shock value or gross-out value. It's also much more timeless, and usually less juvenile. There's nothing better than a good british black comedy!
lizlee89 lizlee89 8 years
I'm American but I prefer British humor hands down. Although British humor does tend to involve even more inpropriety (sex jokes, etc.) tha America humor, it is still more witty and smart rather than just being, you know, fart jokes and people falling down...
PrincessLtrain PrincessLtrain 8 years
Doens't matter who, what, where, when or how. If it makes me laugh, that's all I need.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
i'm actually partial to british humor actually, and the sad thing is that there are SO MANY shows that i love from the UK but when they are remade here in the US - something just falls flat
genesisrocks genesisrocks 8 years
Either for me
Mariana48 Mariana48 8 years
british, the best american humour pales in comparison to the best british
Ricky Gervais Scare on The Ellen Show Video 2016
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