Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 July 2014

Ruling on elephant man impression

Ross Noble did an impression of "elephant man" John Merrick in an edition of Have I Got News For You

Ross Noble's impression of "elephant man" John Merrick in an edition of Have I Got News For You has been ruled to be "at the margins of acceptability" by the BBC Trust.

But the Trust's editorial standards committee said the comic was making a reference to the screen portrayal of the disfigured Merrick by actor John Hurt, rather than mocking people with disabilities.

The committee said the show did not breach editorial guidelines by screening the footage.

Noble did his impersonation as he bantered with panellist Paul Merton and made a gag that actors in a fast food advert had trained at the John Merrick Academy of Drama, as he jokingly performed the famous line "I am not an animal" from the The Elephant Man in a slurred voice.

The committee did not uphold a complaint about the show, screened in June, but added that it "considered that the impersonation of John Merrick's speech and physical disability, in particular, was at the margins of acceptability".

Latest Entertainment News

Latest Music News

Latest Film & TV News

Latest Eating Out News

Horoscopes

Your Horoscopes by Russell Grant

Leo:

You feel optimistic and for good reason. An admirer has been trying to win your heart. All this attention is flattering. If you're single, keep playing hard to get. The more you resist, the more they'll persist. Are you already in a relationship? Start pursuing a cherished dream. Fulfilling your heart's desire will make you a better partner and friend. Dwelling on what might have been will just make you bitter. Take a risk. It's better to try and fail than be paralysed by fear.More