Five Minutes With... Doug Stanhope

Doug Stanhope
Doug Stanhope

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Controversial American comedian Doug Stanhope performs in Portsmouth for the first time next weekend.

A two-time winner of Time Out New York’s Comedy Performance of the Year, Doug is known in the UK for his regular appearances on BBC2’s Newswipe with Charlie Brooker.

As his own PR representative states, Doug is ‘an unsettling, uninhibited, incendiary comedian who displays scant respect for any personal, moral or social boundaries.

‘He is a raging, vitriolic, viciously coruscating critic of the stupidity of our social and political systems and the moronic saps who sustain it.’

We caught up with Doug to find out more.

When did you first realise you were funny?

I’m not sure but I know that it wasn’t until I started doing it on stage that I ever worried about being funny enough. It was always way more satisfying to just be funny at a bar with your friends or a fat girl.

What would you be if you weren’t a comedian?

In a perfect world and without the necessary schooling, permits or physical ability, a defence lawyer maybe... or a really cool dictator. In reality, probably a bartender.

Name three things that make you laugh:

Number one would be number two... meaning poop. Farts and poop are the only thing that have consistently made me laugh from a small child to the last time I farted. Comedy, in all its forms, has a very short shelf-life but every fart is funny.

Number two would be Cartman from South Park. It’s been 15 years and I keep waiting for him to wear off, but he never gets tired or unfunny. And I don’t even think he’s a real person.

Number three is death. If it isn’t poop or Cartman, I can always count on someone’s untimely or unusual death for a chuckle. It’s as natural as poop yet people are so shocked and dismayed by it.

What’s your favourite one-liner?

Dav Attell’s ‘I hate to travel. I think its because my Dad used to beat me with a globe.’

Who’s your biggest hero?

Martin Luther King.

See Doug at Portsmouth Guildhall next Saturday, April 7, from 8pm. Tickets cost £22 to £37 from (023) 9282 4355 or