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Petition launched against Ricky Gervais' joke about terminally ill kids in new Netflix special

Petition launched against Ricky Gervais' joke about terminally ill kids in new Netflix special

A petition has been launched after the comedian joked about terminally ill children

A petition calling on Netflix to cut out a joke from the upcoming Ricky Gervais comedy special Armageddon has amassed thousands of signatures.

In the comedy show, which is due to be released on the streaming service on 25 December, Gervais performs a routine about terminally ill children which has been shared online to promote the show.

In his routine Gervais jokes about being busy making videos for terminally ill children as part of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

The comedian said he would make videos if children asked for it, saying that 'I don't burst into hospitals and go wake up baldie'.

Gervais then said he always started his videos to terminally ill children by saying 'why didn't you wish to get better'.

Armageddon will release on Netflix on Christmas Day.
Netflix

He then clarified that he was definitely joking and that he didn't use the same language in his jokes as he would in real life.

The 62-year-old then performed a conversation where he played himself and a critic of his language, and compared people getting angry at what he said to thinking Sir Anthony Hopkins was a cannibal because he played one in Silence of the Lambs.

However, there has been a backlash to Gervais' routine as many were outraged at the comedian.

Ashley Cain, who sadly lost a daughter to cancer in 2021, said he'd previously been a fan of Gervais but 'making a mockery of dying children' had caused him to get 'so mad at this'.

Several agreed that it was very much not a joke for those who had actually had to go through it, while others said it was just supposed to be a joke and if people didn't like it they could just ignore it.

A petition demanding that Netflix remove the skit from Armageddon has also been launched and amassed thousands of signatures.

Ashley Cain was one of many who hit out at Gervais for his joke.
@mrashleycain/Instagram

It slams the comedy routine as 'not only distasteful but also heartless', and the petition was started by a parent whose child had cancer.

The petition criticised the 'derogatory language' used by Gervais in his routine and asked 'how a writer or anyone at Netflix could greenlight such appalling content'.

"He completely crossed the line. Our children are not a punchline, their lives aren’t a joke," the petition directed towards Gervais and Netflix read.

"This is why we demand that Netflix remove this offensive skit from its platform immediately.

"We believe that comedy should never come at the expense of someone else's pain or suffering - especially when it involves innocent children battling life-threatening illnesses."

LADbible has contacted Netflix and Ricky Gervais' representatives for comment.

Featured Image Credit: Mike Marsland/Getty / Netflix

Topics: Ricky Gervais, Netflix, Celebrity