back to article Germans completely humourless: Official

A survey of 30,000 people across 15 countries has confirmed what the world knew all along: Germans are completely humourless. The poll for social networking site Badoo.com found that the national stereotype of Germans as ruthlessly efficient in matters of manufacturing and football, but entirely inadequate in the wit …

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  1. Ru
    FAIL

    Oh dear.

    British humour doesn't translate at all well; even other English speakers (especially in the US or Canada) just don't get it. I expect the same is true for other countries, though naturally they couldn't possibly be as witty as us. Sarcasm seems to be missing from most of the world, for example.

    Germans not funny though? Common misconception. The problem is that there is a very clear separation between their 'funny time' and their 'serious time'. Attempting humour in 'serious time' will be met with nothing but confusion. Faced with that sort of response, no-one ever bothers to visit them during funny time.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Oh Dear

      >British humour doesn't translate at all well

      Not only that, most other nationalities have no idea about the concept of understatement.

    2. Steve Evans

      @Ru

      I remember reading somewhere that the German's see a lot of English humour and subtleties as equal to lying... Such as the famous incident with the 747 pilot who lost all four engines in an ash cloud and came over the tannoy to say "Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are doing our damnedest to get them going again. I trust you are not in too much distress."

      I guess the German expect you to be honest in these situations and come over the tannoy shouting "Achtung, veee have no engines, veee are all going to die!!!!!"

      I think I'd rather be on the BA plane, if I'm going to die I'd rather not do it stressed!

      1. Otto von Humpenstumpf
        Joke

        I don't get it.

        I don't get it. The German pilot would have flown a German plane. Of course the engines wouldn't have failed in the first place, being German-made.

      2. Ken Hagan Gold badge
        Happy

        @Steve

        "I remember reading somewhere that the German's see a lot of English humour and subtleties as equal to lying"

        That would have been a "magazine" article on the BBC web site a week or two back. The gist of it was that they don't use smalltalk and euphemism as a social lubricant the way that we do. Once you've figured out the rules of the game, however, German culture is as much fun for the Germans as British culture is for us. If you want a link to the article, try googling for "bleedin' obvious".

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

    3. Lionel Baden

      @RU

      Very good post and i have to agree fully.

      Although i was suprised to see UK score so badly, But then again alot of ppl dont get black adder

    4. mafoo
      Mushroom

      Belgium

      Belgium!? BELGIUM WTF!!

      1. Marvin the Martian
        IT Angle

        The Dutch funnier than the Belgians?

        Hahahaha. It's the pollees who made the jokes here.

        Belgium is one surreal joke obviously, with 6 governments (or less when one or more fall for a year or so) and so forth.

    5. Ed Deckard
      Trollface

      Actually, humour is one of Britain's great cultural exports

      I speak of Mr. Bean and Benny Hill, of course.

  2. Monkey Bob
    Angel

    I'm with Spike Milligan on this one...

    In his war memoirs he said they had a (both sides) re-union for people who fought at El Alamein.

    He got talking to & befriended a German veteran, & at some point (can't remember if it was then or after) got a letter from him saying...

    "Dear Spike, it was great to meet you. Sorry I missed you at El Alamein".

    Class, absolute class.

  3. Pete 2

    There is *one* german joke

    What comes between fear and sex?

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    answer scroll down (yes I know that doesn't work on the forum)

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    funf

    1. Ugotta B. Kiddingme Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      actually, there are TWO German jokes

      Your very very funny one and the classic...

      Two peanuts valk into a bar.

      Vun of zem vas assaulted.

      1. Mediocrates Silver badge
        Joke

        No, there is only one German Joke

        The rest are true.

        Joke Alert for the humorless...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Meh

      ...aber es muss...

      "fünf" heißen!

  4. CD001

    Erm...

    Anyone who thinks Germans don't have a sense of humour has never seen Rammstein live - that's all I'm saying ;)

  5. Syren Baran
    Headmaster

    Mizintepretation of data

    Germany iz nummero uno on ze list.

    For ze list of most funny nations we would have zent FunnyBot and been nummero uno AGAIN.

    Harr, harr, take zat!

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    OMG!

    I can only assume this survey based their idea of UK humour purely on Ricky Gervais; for whom, on behalf of my country, I apologise.

    Actually, that's a point, country. Maybe England was pulled down by some of the other nations, Gordon Broon was hardly a bundle of laughs was he, he couldn't even smile without training, and even then it was rather creepy.

    So has anyone bothered to sign up to the site to find out which countries came out on top of the side splitting chart?

    I'm fearing the Aussies might have done quite well, which is odd as their humour is pretty similar to us brits, just with all the subtlety removed, that's when they're not whining about something of course.

    Anon, cos, well I'm bound to have upset some people - lucky I chose not to comment on the USA coming higher than the UK...

  7. Tom 15

    America?

    I mean, honestly, the Americans have the worst sense of humour around. At least people without English as a first language have an excuse.

  8. Filippo

    How many Germans does it take to change a lightbulb?

    One: they're efficient and not very funny.

    1. Gav
      Devil

      Humour = a matter of opinion

      "Gordon Broon was hardly a bundle of laughs"

      Yes, because that's the first thing you look for in the leader of your country; the ability to raise a laugh. That's why Berlusconi is so widely respected as statesman.

      I'm afraid all this survey (and ElReg's response) demonstrates is that different cultures have different ideas of what's funny and that the individuals in each country, naturally, believe their sense of humour is among the best..

    2. ian 22

      Shirley not!

      Are you intimating that Yanks speak English? If so, why can't I understand them?

      1. John 104
        Mushroom

        What?

        It isn't us that can't be understood, its you Brits! ;)

        Personally, I find British humor quite entertaining (not just Ricky G). It takes a bit to get through it some times, but it can be great fun.

    3. Dave 15

      of course the USA comes higher than Britian

      Thats because they make so much noise about being the best at everything that idiot Sun reader types end up believing it - tell a fool a lie often enough and it becomes the truth - its what our government (in the UK) has relied on for years.

      1. Allan George Dyer Silver badge
        Happy

        Just watch their TV programmes...

        you can tell that they are hilarious because of the laughter from the audience. It's so synchronised, too.

    4. willyandre
      Pint

      Language as an excuse

      Then again, I have english as my third language, and I both understand and love the british humor. Well, except for Fawlty Towers and Mr. Bean. Those just leave me feeling embarrassed on behalf of the cast :p

      Other stuff, like Black Adder, Monty Python, A bit of Fry and Laurie etc. leaves me in stitches.

      I see Ricky Gervais mentioned as a cautionary tale further up, but he sure has his moments too :D

      There are some phrases and slang that need looking up to fully appreciate the subtleties, especially in El Reg, but those keep getting fewer and furhter between :D

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Americans have the worst sense of humour around?

      The Big Lebowski.

      Your move.

  9. NoneSuch Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    Wrong.

    Germans have a great sense of humour but it is only displayed to friends and family. They reserve work time for work for the most part, but are no different than any other country or peoples.

  10. cor
    Facepalm

    Hasn't anyone ever seen 'Allo, ' Allo?

    The Germans were the funniest characters in that.

    I found the 2 RAF guy far less funny.

    So there.

    1. ravenviz
      Meh

      Good moaning!

      I thought the British spy masquerading as the French policeman was funny.

      Oh hang on, no I didn't, it was the same joke told repeatedly.

      Oh hang on, isn't that British humour?

      e.g. "Why was The Fast Show funny? Was it actually funny at all?"

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/theatre/drama/3585786/Running-out-of-steam.html

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Bet you say that

          to all the girls...

        2. Naughtyhorse

          Now you're talking

          pure genius,

          well, pure 41st genius.

      2. Dave 15

        Radio 4

        Could be of course that the people involved in the survey have been listening to radio 4 - with very very few exceptions their 'funny' programs are so unfunny I'd rather pluck my own pubes out while watching paint dry

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          You need Radio 4 extra - aka Radio 7

          Hut 33, Cabin Pressure, Deep Trouble

          If you don't like any of them, why you must be German (though as the first one involves the War, I 'll let you off if you really are German)

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            And ...

            99p Challenge

            Sunday Format

            The Boosh

            Mitchell and Webb

            (Insert a long, long list of other shows that were clearly good enough to picked up by BBC TV)

            The Consultants

            The News Quiz

            Charm Offensive

            Genius

            The Department

            The Unbelievable Truth (with funny German)

          2. Lamont Cranston
            Facepalm

            BBC7

            is enough to convince anyone that the British didn't start being funny until sometime after the Goons started. Even then, we appeared to be a bit shit at it.

            Endless repeats of the Clitheroe Kid, anyone? No? How about Educating Archie? Come on, ventriloquism on the radio - it's inherently funny.

    2. Dave 15

      oi!

      I know one of them, worked with him, good chap :)

    3. T J
      Pint

      Ah, its even more than that

      The Germans actually have a very good sense of humour, and its often quite subtle. Its been said that Germany was possibly founded by Aspergers people and this could be true - they tend to be very direct. This doesn't preclude humour, in fact the opposite.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    German humor

    I recall some Germans discussing reasons not to eat at "Kentucky schreit ficken"...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wa ha ha

    Isn't British Humour based on insulting everything and everyone (including themselves)? I can see how some might not find that funny.

  13. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Wa ha ha

      Yup, that's pretty much it. Stir in some sarcasm, word play, subtleties, and occasionally sneak "bum" and you'll sound like a native.

      Those that take themselves too seriously don't get it/like it. That also includes some UK celebs, who are therefore seen as humourless twats.

      I used to have a humour test for girls, just stick you tongue out at them in public, if they stick their tongue back out at you, they'll cool and obviously don't take themselves too seriously.

      1. Bill Fresher

        @ @Wa ha ha

        "I used to have a humour test for girls, just stick you tongue out at them in public, if they stick their tongue back out at you, they'll cool and obviously don't take themselves too seriously."

        Surely it's more customary to bend over and show a bare behind?

        1. Dave 15

          thats far more useful...

          if she does the same you get a sneak preview :)

    2. Oliver Mayes

      That one doesn't count

      It was written by an Englishman and used as a weapon against the Germans.

    3. The Alpha Klutz

      "I can see how some might not find that funny."

      That's right, you poo poo head!

    4. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

      @AC 12.34

      I tend to agree, even though I am from deepest UKania. British "humour" has recently become very cruel, based on laughing *at* people, not *with* them - Ricky Gervaise being at the top of the list. There is something quite cruel in a lot of lauded British humour at the moment, and I think it is recognised at some level by more people than me, because the examples being quoted above (Monty Python, 'Allo 'Allo, Benny Hill) are all from an earlier time.

      That isn't to say that there isn't some gentle humour going on (I'd put "The IT Crowd" in there, for instance), but most of the comedy I like to watch seems to come from USA, e.g "Two and a Half Men", "The [American] Office" (and I truly hated the British version, so that shows how much better I think it is).

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    What a load of tripe

    Yeah... B***...

    I am going to turn on the telly tonight and put on the DVD of Zadornov taking the piss out of Putin on Russian prime time TV, alternating with him taking the p*** regarding British, Americans, German and Russian themselves.

    The ranking should be possibly the other way around. Jasper Carrot and Billy Connely are boring schoolteachers compared to the better off from the Russian stand-up comedians. In fact out of the English speaking ones only Russel Brandt and Zaadi come even close to the level of offensiveness and "nothing is sacred" you get there.

    There is however the language barrier and the "type of humour" barrier.

    Most Anglo-Saxon jokes are situation jokes and practical jokes. Most Russian jokes are language jokes - playing with double meaning of words, similar pronunciation of words, etc. That is why the common style there is "Buster Keaton" - the joke is in the words and is similarly funny read, played and written. It is not in the situation like let's say in "One Foot in the Grave".

    If you do not know the language, Russian humor will be utterly lost to you. You will end up in the silly situation of thinking how tragic Chekhov stuff is while the Russians in the audience are nearly p*** themselves off laughing. Ditto for a lot of the modern stuff. You cannot grok "Common Miracle" if you are not Russian. Translation does not help because lexical humor cannot be mapped onto situational.

    Afaik, it is is the same with German - it is not situational humor so you have to know the language to understand its funniness.

    1. David Dawson
      Alert

      Situational versus linguistic

      Are you talking about Americans? Or the eskimos?

      While I agree on Jasper C and the modern day Billy (he used to be better, he's 'establishment' now), are you completely sure on your anglo saxon jokes thing?

      I certainly wouldn't class most english (I'm english, the other UK nations are a bit different) humour as situational. Sure, there are funny stories, but the best is all word play.. not too dissimilar sounding from your russian description to be honest... When normal people, ie not on TV, face to face are being funny, much of the time its playing with language and words thats going on, not slapstick. A decent stand up over here (of which there are loads, all over the place) does this too (repeatedly swearing just isn't funny).

      Funnily enough, your impression on 'Anglo Saxon' jokes is exactly the same as I have for German jokes, I imagine, equally incorrectly.

      So, there you are, shows the power of the stereotype, eh?

      1. John 104
        Joke

        Title is required...(see, humor)

        So, there you are, shows the power of the stereotype, eh?

        Was that supposed to be a Canadian joke?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          I lolled

          I wonder how many other Anglotards will.

  15. puffspluslotion

    Let me tell you about how we do it in America....

    The few British comedy programs that do make it to American TV are anything but subtle. We mostly just get your slapstick and a few improv shows. I'm curious as to how this survey was conducted, as I always thought the French were only funny because of their stereotypes but that would mean the Germans are also funny. Also, I don't know that I've ever seen or heard comedy from Poland, Belgium, or Holland.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL

      Well, obviously...

      ...if you haven't seen or heard it, then it doesn't exist.

      I can tell you that comedy in Poland has always been thriving. Satirical works are included in the canon of late medieval and renaissance Polish literature the kiddies learn in school; and let's not forget that humor was one of the basic tools in the fight against communism - here's probably the best-known example:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seksmisja .

      Oh, and for the record - I like British humor.

      1. SisterClamp
        Devil

        Ah yes, "Sex Mission"....

        ....even just following along as a non-Polish speaker, it was quite humorous. Yes, can't believe the Poles rated so low, although an awful lot of it is/was contextual.

  16. The Alpha Klutz

    "it’s a bit of a pie in the face for us."

    I actually like pie in the face.

    1. Noons
      Thumb Up

      what flavour of pie?

      and whose face?

  17. CatNinja

    German counterpart

    I worked for an American company that sent out a compulsory questionaire to all it's sites which had as one of it's points that you would not consume alcohol on site. The German office proptly responded with a "Not on your life, we need it to get through the bloody paperwork."

  18. Andy Fletcher

    For the Germans....

    ....the toilet is a mundane and functional item. For us, the basis for an entire culture.

    Honstly, if farts & the word "poo" aren't funny I don't know what is.

  19. BristolBachelor Gold badge

    German fork-lift video

    Anyone who saw the German H&S video about fork-lift trucks that did the round a few years ago will know that at least some Germans have a sense of humur. At work we couldn't stop laughing :)

    KurzFilmAgentur Hamburg

    www.shortfilm.com

    präsentiert

    1. HFoster

      Hmm, I live in Germany

      I'll tell you what, when I'm out with Germans, pissing, shitting, farting and fucking are *just* as key to their humour as mine (I'm English).

      As with any nation, some people are dour cunts who seem to think smiling sincerely will somehow put a crack in their face, and others are lively, and full of wit and conviviality.

      That said, I live in Munich. Tight arsed bastard Central.

    2. nyelvmark

      You mean this?

      "Fork lift driver Klaus"

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jmnFARPexw

      It's funny, in a ludicrously over-the-top kind of way, but I had to close my eyes a couple of times.

      Definitely not for the squeamish.

      1. SisterClamp
        Thumb Up

        Thanks for the link,

        the kids loved it. Combined mechanics and equipment safety tips, German language (they're learning it) plus gore. Better than a zombie movie! Educational too.

    3. Noons
      Pint

      the Bush pilot

      Have you seen the clip about the Bush pilot? I believe it was made for a German TV comedy show, and you can probably find a version with subtitles on youtube. It clearly shows that the German sense of humour has been misunderestimated.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Did I read that correctly?

    America is at the top?

    This is a country that tries to take the piss out of it's own popular culture being almost entirely about people being kicked in the groin and big cars crashing into each other by writing a film about people being kicked in the groin and big cars crashing into each other.

  21. George Nacht
    Happy

    Gremans can take a joke,

    they just needs an early warning. My boss, when talking to our German counterparts, literally opens with : "I´m gonna tell you a joke now," and then it works.

    On the unrelated note, one of my German friends has a note in his PDA, saying in translation: "09:00 - 09.30 AM - Be spontaneous".

    Go figure....

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Joke

    FFS

    Haven't they heard of Monty Python, Black Adder, Fawlty Towers etc?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Black Adder

      I sat in a bar in Portugal and on came Black Adder. People sat staring at it like dogs being shown card tricks (copyright Bill Hicks) for five minutes before it was switched off. Before anyone pipes up, the Portuguese do have a sense of humour.

      Monty Python, 40 years old. Fawlty Towers, 35 years old. Black Adder, 30 years old. Shirley you mean My Family, Life of Riley and Big Top?

    2. Paul M 1

      Title

      I remember watching Monty Python when I lived in Germany - original English with German sub-titles. I finally realised that even the sub-titlers didn't have a clue what was going on when I saw that they'd translated a reference to the town Leatherhead as "Lederkopf"....

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Facepalm

    I can't laugh about that.

    I can't laugh about that. Really.

    But then, I'm from Germany....

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    To the US readers

    Brit humour has lots of levels. Just watch some episodes of Danger Mouse.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    we may be 4th from bottom, but our humour is intact.

    The English are not usually given to patriotic boasting - indeed, both

    patriotism and boasting are regarded as unseemly, so the combination of

    these two sins is doubly distasteful. But there is one significant exception

    to this rule, and that is the patriotic pride we take in our sense of humour,

    particularly in our expert use of irony. The popular belief is that we have

    a better, more subtle, more highly developed sense of humour than any

    other nation, and specifically that other nations are all tediously literal in

    their thinking and incapable of understanding or appreciating irony.

    Almost all of the English people I interviewed subscribed to this belief,

    and many foreigners, rather surprisingly, humbly concurred. ........

    For those attempting to acclimatize to this atmosphere, the most

    important "rule" to remember is that irony is endemic: like the humour in

    general, irony is a constant, a given, a normal element of ordinary,

    everyday conversation. The English may not always be joking, but they

    are always in a state of readiness for humour. We do not always say the

    opposite of what we mean, but we are always alert to the possibility of

    irony.

    From: Watching the English by Kate Fox, anthropologist, London 2004.

    more of it here, and in German. (or google "particularly in our expert use of irony")

    http://www.proz.com/?sp=profile&eid_s=124736&sp_mode=port

  26. james4765
    Happy

    Humor is tough to translate

    I grew up on BBC comedy here in the US, and it put me a little out of sync with the rest of my countrymen. Jokes that don't quite make sense (except to other people who smuggled Benny Hill VHS tapes past their parents, etc) were my stock in trade in school.

    German wit definitely exists, but the subtle cues that give away "I'm f**king with you" are one of the hardest parts of a language to translate. We reduced my German teacher to tears of laughter by translating a few scenes of Monty Python and the Holy Grail to intentionally bad German for language week in high school, though.

  27. zen1

    I'm gonna go out on a limb

    and say comedy is intimately subjective. What may be down right boorish in one culture may be gut wrenching hysterical to another. I happen to enjoy the British sense of humor (humour), as I find it delightly tounge & cheek.

    Ironically, a lot of the top comedians, performing in the US are Canadian's.

    But hey, that's just my opinion...

  28. Noons
    Stop

    poll the other one...

    As a former UK resident and currently living in Germany, there's only thing I can say about the poll results: You must be joking!

  29. nyelvmark
    Unhappy

    Translating humour can be impossible

    ...particularly where it's based on word play.

    I've lived over 10 years abroad, and the British comedy people talk to me about seems, to me, the crudest and unfunniest: Benny Hill, Allo allo, Mr Bean. Of course the last is almost entirely visual, which helps.

    Interestingly, I heard recently that Carry On movies were once popular in Hungary - dubbed into Hungarian. For me, nearly all the best humour in those films lies in untranslatable double entendres ("Stuffing, mother?" "...for the lucky ones, yes") and other English wordplay (Ah, infamy! Infamy! They've all got it infamy!), but I guess the best comedy works on many levels.

  30. Dave 15

    survey

    I guess the survey was ran around the international equivalent of Sun readers - those who believe the age of the page 3 model and think the rest of the paper is honest as well. If you visit these places and talk to the people they have a good sense of humour.

  31. asdf Silver badge
    WTF?

    Canada wtf?

    Nobody in the world puts out famous comedians at the rate Canada does. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Canadian_comedians is pretty much a whose who of comedians in the english speaking world. I guess it takes a good sense of humor to survive those brutal winters.

  32. asdf Silver badge
    Mushroom

    American toilet humor

    Yep our humor tends to be a bit crass. The rest of the world had to be like WTF? when the Nutty Professor went big lol.

  33. Paul 135
    Gimp

    American sitcoms are NOT funny

    I just don't find many American sitcoms funny at all. Most of them are made out to be realistic but all the characters are really two-dimensional e.g. Friends. Also in sitcoms like Friends or Two and a Half Men almost every other "joke" is some reference to "being bad at sex" or "craving sex" or "not getting sex"*, and it's almost like a schoolboy/girl saying "hey look at us - we can say the word 'sex' lots - aren't we cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!".

    Contrast to British comedies which are either believable and subtle like the original The Office or Peep Show, One Foot in the Grave or completely and utterly daft like Allo Allo, Red Dwarf or Bottom.

    * unlike a hilarious British example of doing this like Bottom

    1. Oninoshiko

      congratulations, you just agreed with many Americans.

      Sitcoms are cheap to make, and mostly benign, (therefore easy to get past censors). That makes them neither "good" nor "funny."

    2. Nick Pettefar

      US Humour

      Does anyone remember Soap or M.A.S.H? How about Steve Martin? I am truly English and think our comedy programmes are great but the US does have some gems too. The Muppets? I am sure there are more but I am getting old and my memory is failing. Mother?

  34. Smoking Man

    Agrreed, we haff no humor!

    Well, maybe, a little bit, depends..

    at least my colleagues and I found that one funny (despite being German):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FJVpPZB2LhQ

    Prost!

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's a Knockout!

    Ha ha ha ha, it's the Belgians!

  36. Mediocrates Silver badge
    Holmes

    From a Yank

    Canada needs a good sense of humor to live next to us.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Obviously untrue...

    ...Germans are very funny indeed if they're trying to order food at a run-down, mismanaged hotel in England.

    I still remember the first time I saw that episode. I was probably around 12 (reruns on US tv)... I think it's the first time I laughed so hard I was actually in pain. John Cleese should get some kind of nobel prize for service to humanity just for that one scene.

    Are You Being Served was pretty excellent, too. Wordplay much? 'I was up all night trying to find Mrs. Slocumb's pussy...' etc etc...

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Dinner for one

    The proof actually came a long, long time ago, as anyone who's actually seen "Dinner for one" can attest. If you find it funny, you must have had a sense of humour bypass - even it's creator, Freddy Frinton, was bemused by it's success. As it's a popular christmas/new year tradition across much of northern Europe, you can draw you're won conclusions about the rest.

    Humour or lack of it seems to vary by region in Germany in any case. My girlfriend is from North Germany where my humour generally survives the divide, as does theirs, although I find it a little lacking in subtlety. However the Bavarians I've met never seem to get UK humour at all, and their own only seems to stretch as far as stating the obvious; "you have froth from your beer on your upper lip" provokes the kind of laughter that suggests we have different takes on why small amounts of material on the upper lip is funny.

    Stewart Lee provided what I think is the most convincing explanation for the misconception of German humourlessness a few years ago:

    http://tinyurl.com/2ynhgw

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    Re: Kentucky schreit ficken

    Und auch heute haben wir wieder Wetter, Wetter, Wetter!!!!!

    Ich hole dann mal meine Jacke...

  40. David Cantrell
    Happy

    Pointless title, which must contain letters and/or digits.

    Ten years ago there was a discussion on Radio 4's Today programme about the supposed lack of a German sense of humour. To this day I'm not sure if the cultural attache from the German embassy was serious or brilliantly dead-pan when he said "us Germans take our humour very seriously".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      R4

      How can you all mention Radio 4 without mentioning Henning Wehn? He's on every other programme.

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Dinner for one

    Trust me, no one in Germany actually finds Dinner for One funny, they just watch it once a year as a sort of weird tradition (i.e. something that's just done). It's unfortunately a very difficult tradition to describe to anyone!

  42. Sam Therapy
    WTF?

    All the Germans I've ever met...

    ...have well developed senses of humour. I have found, though, they tended to be somewhat shy and (believe it or not) rather self deprecating.

    As for us, we produced Python, Fawlty Towers, Blackadder and plenty of other landmark comedy shows so I think the whole survey is a crock of shite.

  43. <user />

    Null

    Germans not funny... Funnybot anyone? Enough said!

    Both the Germans and Dutch are hilarious!

  44. Psmiffy
    Facepalm

    Whatever you do ....

    ... don't mention the war! I did it once and I think I got away with it!

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