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‘I’m all in favour of trigger warnings’, John Cleese tells LBC as he says ‘society has changed’

30 April 2024, 10:36 | Updated: 30 April 2024, 10:38

John Cleese speaks to Nick Ferrari as Fawlty Towers comes to theatres

By Jenny Medlicott

John Cleese has told LBC that he’s ‘all in favour of’ trigger warnings if it prevents people from getting upset over certain content.

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Speaking to LBC’s Nick Ferrari at Breakfast, the Monty Python co-founder was asked what he thought about increased sensitivity over certain words and the use of trigger warnings.

Discussing trigger warnings, Mr Cleese said: “I’m all in favour of warnings.”

Nick added that such content warnings have been added to the likes of TV comedy Terry and June, to which Mr Cleese replied: “Well that’s alright, everyone is super sensitive at the moment and I think it’s just a mood that will pass in another couple of years.

“But the point is to warn people, because if they’ve been warned then they cannot watch it. If they haven’t been warned they can start saying you shouldn’t have–.

“If you’re going to have people getting upset about things, just tell them ‘you might get upset about things’.

John Cleese has adapted three Fawlty Towers episodes for a new two-hour play.
John Cleese has adapted three Fawlty Towers episodes for a new two-hour play. Picture: Alamy

“I think it’s very silly but right at the moment it’s better to throw them a small bone and to give warnings, you know, sexual content or violence, not that anyone’s ever suggested we shouldn’t watch a programme because it was so violent.”

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When asked why he thought certain words had to be approached with more caution today, Mr Cleese said: “I don’t know, society changes.

“I think we used to be a middle class country and there was lots of things wrong with that, as there are with every arrangement but it was basically a little more thoughtful, a little more calm, a little more humorous and a lot more optimistic.”

It comes as the Fawlty Towers writer has adapted three of the show episodes for a new two-hour play.

The play is set to pen at the Apollo theatre in London in May.

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