The Royal Variety Performance sparks outrage as comedian makes ‘sick’ covid joke

The Royal Variety Performance viewers were left unimpressed on Sunday night after comedian Simon Brodkin made a “sick” joke. It comes after the 46-year-old introduced his set with a nod to the coronavirus pandemic.

Before he began, host Bradley Walsh gave ITV viewers an insight into some of the pranks the comedian has done in the past. Some of these included giving Theresa May a p45 and throwing money over Sepp Blatter.

Walking out onto the stage, Simon said: “Thank you, it is great to be here. I am the guy who’s done all the stunts. People always want to know whether my stunts ever go wrong. Occasionally, in late 2019 I broke into this laboratory in Wuhan…sorry.”

As he paused, the audience let out an awkward laughter and the comedian apologised for the joke. However, fans watching at home were left furious with Simon’s reference to the coronavirus pandemic.

It wasn’t long before viewers took to Twitter to share their thoughts on what he’d said as @ilovewhitewine said: “Did that Simon guy really just make a really poor “joke” about Wuhan/Covid? WTF.” (sic)

Replying, @Johnboy710Fble added: “Yes he did. I’m surprised that he didn’t get booed off the stage.”

Echoing their thoughts, @ladyjanesailor replied: “Yes he did. Pathetic. Not funny. None of it is funny…or watchable.”

@xXemmie10Xx fumed: “Vile joke.”

@blue_laur11 fumed: “Was Simon Bodkin making a joke about COVID?? The joke about him breaking into a laboratory if So that’s not funny that’s sick !! #RoyalVarietyPerformance.” (sic)

However, @Spinkzilla defended the comedian as they commented: “Lee Nelson absolutely nailed the Wuhan joke!”

During the night, fans got to see an array of various acts take to the stage including performances from McFly, Hannah Waddingham and Tom Allen.

Although viewers saw Lee Mack front the Variety Show last year, this year it was Bradley Walsh in the hot seat.

Although it’s not his first time appearing on the annual show as he first performed there himself three decades ago.

Touching on his debut, he commented: “Performance. I was very very nervous back then, I was a young man.

“I was thirty-three years of age and I’m sixty-two so I’ve had thirty years of experience. I’m so looking forward to hosting this year, I really am, I can’t wait.” has reached out to ITV for comment.

The Royal Variety Performance is available to watch on ITVX.


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