1. Having trouble logging in by clicking the link at the top right of the page? Click here to be taken to the log in page.
    Dismiss Notice

Female Comedians (aka Comediennes)

Discussion in 'TalkCeltic Pub' started by Seán Mac D, Jun 18, 2019.

Discuss Female Comedians (aka Comediennes) in the TalkCeltic Pub area at TalkCeltic.net.

  1. Seán Mac D Gold Member Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2014
    Messages:
    15,660
    Likes Received:
    26,864
    Only if they play Shania Twain as their entrance music as they walk into the office to announce it.
     
    Cena and bagforlife like this.
  2. Minty 2 x BOTB winner Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    57,654
    Likes Received:
    20,014
    Location:
    London
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Current: Griffiths, All time: Moravcik
    Fav Celtic Song:
    YNWA
    Lol, no it isn’t, the status quo was far more akin to gender based discrimination, where there were hardly any women writers at all, usually none or a token one. One guy not getting the job in your scenario is because he isn’t as good as the four ahead of him. A tv show is well within its rights to want to hire people from different backgrounds in order to get a more diverse collection of writing.

    Regardless of how good any male writer is, they’ll never truly be able to write from the perspective of a female. It’s clearly an industry that’s dominated by men so it makes sense to give people that make up around half of the population, the chance to be represented.

    It would have been nice if you had included the entire article, where is states producers complained there weren’t any female writers; or they didn’t know where to find them, but I suppose that wouldn’t have suited the point you wanted to make.
     
  3. Minty 2 x BOTB winner Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    57,654
    Likes Received:
    20,014
    Location:
    London
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Current: Griffiths, All time: Moravcik
    Fav Celtic Song:
    YNWA
    Nope.
     
  4. Seán Mac D Gold Member Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2014
    Messages:
    15,660
    Likes Received:
    26,864
    Aaah, so it's about diversity of writing? I guess that any pre-determined characteristics will also be included in this push then?

    No all Female lists? No all Asian lists? No all left-handed lists?

    If not then it's clear hypocrisy.

    Whether 4 men were better than the guy for the job is completely immaterial, if he is 1 out of the best 5 candidates for the role then he should receive a job offer. Saying that he shouldn't simply because he was born with a Y chromosome is absurd.

    Do we start ensuring that all Midwifery courses lower their entrance criteria for males as only 0.4% of midwives are male and that's not representative of the population and hinders diversity of thought?

    Historical discrimination was indisputably a thing but the answer to it is not to reverse it the other way; ending up in a never-ending pendulum of injustice.

    Ensuring that no candidate is refused a job or role purely based on characteristics they have no control over (gender, race, disability) is surely the best way to tackle inequality?
     
    Jax Teller, \o/, Xatraps and 3 others like this.
  5. Officer Doofy Hey Terry, smell my finger!

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2011
    Messages:
    50,735
    Likes Received:
    16,127
    What a load of pish.
     
    KRS-1888 likes this.
  6. Minty 2 x BOTB winner Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    57,654
    Likes Received:
    20,014
    Location:
    London
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Current: Griffiths, All time: Moravcik
    Fav Celtic Song:
    YNWA
    Lol, there are bursaries available for comedy writers from minorities.

    Totally missing the point. If there are 5 jobs, and one of them is for a woman, then that means there are four slots available for men, therefore he needs to be in the top four of the jobs available to him.

    I’d have no problem with any sort of idea to encourage more male midwifes, but trying to compare the requirements of comedy writing with a job like midwifery is laughable. Men have been allowed to be midwifes for decades now, but there’s clearly not a lot of men interested in being one, with so few. There are, however, a lot of women who want to write and face barriers with regards to opportunities. If you can see the difference there’s no point discussing it with you.

    Historical discrimination? You think it’s been eliminated then? I’ll do you the courtesy of assuming you’re not that naive.
    There’s absolutely no chance that giving women more opportunities means that mean will suddenly face discrimination themselves.
    In an ideal world, yes, but again, that’s not what’s happening here.
     
  7. Bigbrute Gold Member Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2014
    Messages:
    8,557
    Likes Received:
    2,945
    Lot of *.
     
    KRS-1888 likes this.
  8. Seán Mac D Gold Member Gold Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2014
    Messages:
    15,660
    Likes Received:
    26,864
    1. I'm typing on my phone so can't be bothered doing the dissection. Bursaries are a way of equalling opportunity (ie. Those that otherwise may not be able to afford it) not outcome.

    2. No, you're missing the point. The reason for inequality and division is because people have allocated roles to individuals with a specific characteristic. I'm sure some of our older members experienced it in Scotland going for jobs with a Catholic school on their CV.

    Jobs are for people. Not whites, not males, not blacks, not females, not Protestants, not Catholics. Those characteristics should have no bearing on your suitability for a job. The fact it's happened in the past should strengthen our resolve to ensure it doesn't happen again in the present and future.

    3. I don't see why it's a laughable comparison. Perhaps you deducing that men aren't interested shows your bias. Likewise comedy gigs have been open to females for decades. Rock up to any comedy club in Scotland on any given night and there will be a female on at some point.

    4. Of course discrimination hasn't been eliminated there will always be individual conscious and subconscious. All humans have inherent bias. There's a difference between offering opportunity to a particular subset - eg. Bursaries - and discriminating against another subset because of things out with their control eg. Born with a * and decades prior to your birth females were overlooked.

    4. Shouldn't be striving our best for as ideal a world as possible, particularly in the field of equality?
     
    \o/, Xatraps and Gyp Rosetti like this.
  9. PaulM1888 Gold Member Gold Member

    Joined:
    May 8, 2007
    Messages:
    61,788
    Likes Received:
    21,476
    1 million percent this.
     
    Gyp Rosetti and Seán Mac D like this.
  10. Scotia Gold Member Gold Member

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2007
    Messages:
    22,356
    Likes Received:
    12,227
    Location:
    here and there
    Fav Celtic Player:
    you wear the hoops thats good enough
    Fav Celtic Song:
    over and over
    There was a programme on last week " Jo Brand 20 years of laughter " :39: nope me neither .

    Joan Rivers was no bad in the day but it was mainly the shock factor , Sarah Millican talking about her " * " is just .. well .. no funny .
     
  11. Johniebhoy.

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2017
    Messages:
    2,396
    Likes Received:
    6,738
    Location:
    Sligeach
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Lubo
    Fav Celtic Song:
    Johnny thompson song
    A few good female comedy writers might make a difference to the * being trotted out now i.e. the never ending tripe passing as spontaneous comedy on every quizcom.
     
  12. Minty 2 x BOTB winner Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    57,654
    Likes Received:
    20,014
    Location:
    London
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Current: Griffiths, All time: Moravcik
    Fav Celtic Song:
    YNWA
    This is just another way of equalling opportunity.
    This is going to get tedious very fast but you are missing the point, again.

    If a TV show wants a writer that is a woman, in order to get a female perspective for jokes, they’re entitled to do so.

    The fact that producers themselves admitted they didn’t know where to look for female writers shows the lack of opportunity that currently exists.

    It’s a laughable comparison for the reasons previously mentioned, it’s a lot easier for a guy to become a midwife, there aren’t any barriers to him becoming one. Me deducing that men aren’t as interested in becoming midwifes is based on the fact that there’s so few of them.

    Yes, and there are plenty of successful female comedians as a result, but that’s clearly different from being a writer on a show. There’s clearly still barriers there.
    There are still a plethora of writing opportunities for men, they’re not being discriminated against. Have a read of the About page on the 50/50 website (below in Spoilers), the woman behind this change makes some valid points as to why it’s necessary.

    The argument about a job always going to the best writer is silly, if a tv show wants a female perspective, because no male is going to be better at giving a female perspective.

    Saskia Schuster,
    Founder Comedy 50:50

    “The seeds of Comedy 50:50 started in February 2018 when I attended ERA 50:50 at BAFTA. ERA stands for Equal Representation for Actresses and their mission statement is:
    ‘ERA 50:50 wants to see women represented on screen, in television and theatre in equal numbers to men. Currently women are systemically under represented. This does not accurately represent our society. It distorts our view of the real world. Equal representation for Actresses, for Audiences, for All. Equal means 50:50.’

    It was an evening of uncomfortable facts and figures highlighting the level of female under-representation across the performing arts. But I think that for me the one speaker who really stood out was Miles Jupp.

    Miles described how, when he was asked to host the News Quiz on R4, he made it one of the terms and conditions of his contract that the panels would always be made up of an equal number of male and female guests. At first he was told that ‘it will be too difficult’, ‘it’s unachievable’, ‘the quality of the show will suffer’. But he insisted and every episode ever since has been absolutely 50:50.

    I’ll admit I heard that and I thought, ‘oh *.’ So I went into work the next day and did a bit of an audit of my comedy entertainment shows and was mightily relieved to see that the producers I was working with were way ahead of me, and the results for on screen equal representation were really good. We were on track with 50:50 representation.
    Then I looked at the writing teams on comedy entertainment shows and scripted commissions and I felt less good. An awful lot of my comedy entertainment shows are made up of all male writing teams. In scripted commissions there has been a significant lack of shows written by women or with women on the writing teams.

    I next took a look at script submissions and the picture was that for every five scripts sent to me written by a man, I’d get one script written by a woman.
    It would have been quite easy to say, ‘I can’t commission something I’ve not been pitched’ but that’s a defensive response rather than a pro-active one, and frankly if that were a main character in a script I’d be complaining that they weren’t driving the action. And as the comedy commissioner at ITV, it’s up to me to drive the narrative.

    At that point I decided I needed to have better conversations with producers. When setting out my ‘commissioning wish list’ I placed emphasis on seeking female writers, and female led scripts - particularly for ITV2. But this had little effect and to be honest I’ve been doing that since I arrived at ITV five years ago and I haven’t seen results. Which is not to lay the blame with producers. But more on that in a moment.

    Then I had a conversation with a female writer which really changed my thinking. She talked passionately about how hard it is for female writers to be commissioned, and how it is down to commissioners to force a change. So I started to look into why I’m not being pitched more scripts by female writers, why female writers aren’t on writing teams, why there is a block in the development pipeline and what can be done to address it.

    I talked to loads and loads of people about it. To writers, producers, agents, performers, to the RTS, to ERA 50:50, to Funny Women, to The Writers’ Guild. There were many responses, many opinions, many personal stories and a lot of anger. Some views were conflicting, some slightly unrealistic, some impractical. But mostly the feedback was thought provoking, and inspiring so I’ve drawn on the most commonly shared observations and tried to create some practical solutions to implement change.
    These are some of my findings:
    Female writers aren’t being hired onto writing teams because they can’t compete with male writers who commonly have accumulated more writing credits. This reflects the long standing culture of comedy being male dominated.

    Female writers find it hard to find producers to work with who ‘get’ their voice and can thereby develop a script to its full potential. This reflects the difficulty of broadening personal networks and producer/writer relationships - partly relating back to the problem of not gaining enough writing credits to even get that first meeting.
    Female writers often don’t thrive as the lone female voice in the writing room. Too often the writing room is not sensitively run, it can be aggressive and slightly bullying. There can all too often be a sense of tokenism towards the lone female. Or the dominant perception is that the female is there purely so the production can hit quotas. Many women don’t want to be or don’t enjoy being that lone female.
    Producers often don’t know how to expand their circle of female writers with whom they work and many feel frustrated that they know only a small pool of talent upon which to draw.
    In response I launched Comedy 50:50 with these actions:

    • I changed the terms of the Social Partnership Agreement. When a show is commissioned or recommissioned, the Social Partnership form is issued with the production contract. From today, this is an additional term of the commission:

    Writing teams must aim towards 50:50 gender representation. The production will require commissioner sign off on the make up of the writing teams.

    In returning scripted commissions the production must demonstrate best endeavours to include female writers in the writing room.

    Now that last point could be achieved by commissioning a couple of episodes of a returning series from female writers. It’s not unusual to farm out episodes to hit writing deadlines. A lot of productions hire additional writers for gag passes, or hire writers for additional material. There are many ways of bringing female writers onto a production that are part of the existing production process.

    In all honesty I don’t know how to change the culture in writing rooms. Incidentally I know plenty of male writers who want no part of those writing rooms because of the behaviour that is allowed to play out. I think the change has to be producer led. But I hope that drawing attention to it might start producers thinking about how to address it. I know that Merman has an all female writing room, and on productions where writing teams are mixed they have a policy of a minimum of two women on the team.

    • We have created an independent database of female writers for producers to access. This consists of female writers with a minimum of one professional writing credit, whether from radio, television, theatre, film, short film or podcast. This database is free for producers to access, it is not ITV endorsed and it is for use no matter which broadcaster has commissioned the show that the producers might be hiring writers for.

    • Regular, focussed networking events. We hold regular events where there is enforced networking. Producers have three ten minute introductory meetings with writers. This is the first step to broadening contacts. For more natural networking at our events, everyone wears a colour coded name badge (one colour for writers, one for producers, one for agents) so that at a glance it is possible to have meaningful conversations.
    * We will be extending networking opportunities to unrepresented writers and agents.

    • Mentoring. From speaking to some writers and agents, there is a desire to create more practical mentoring. Many experienced writers have noticed that the route by which they gained experience and a bit of nurturing is not happening so readily now. They are keen to continue this tradition. There will be more details on this soon.

    • Shadowing placements. We encourage producers to offer opportunities for writers to sit in on writing rooms, table reads and notes sessions.
    * Writers’ forums / support groups
    * Talks and workshops by industry professionals
    I’m aware that there’s a lot more that could be done, we haven’t even mentioned female directors or crew, but to start with I’m keeping the focus small, and the solutions practical, so that we can effect change quickly. But I hope this endeavour will grow.
    Going back to Miles Jupp, I spoke to him recently about how it had planned out on the News Quiz in terms of guest bookings. He said that they have never had a problem. If a female guest drops out at the last minute there is never a question of replacing her with a male guest. This is now the accepted booking culture on the show and it is so natural and so unquestioned, it is simply normal practice.
    Our aim is that one day 50:50 will be normal practice.



    Absolutely.
     
  13. Slaw

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Messages:
    32,063
    Likes Received:
    2,094
    @Minty so if TV show producers wants an all male perspective for their comedy, they should be allowed to do so, right?
     
  14. Momo Sylla

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    Messages:
    1,434
    Likes Received:
    834
    The point about it being difficult to compete for men with more writing credits is insane.

    Would you hire someone for a job who has little proven experience or the person with a lot?

    Complete and utter nonsense. If you're good the writing credits will come.
     
  15. Minty 2 x BOTB winner Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    57,654
    Likes Received:
    20,014
    Location:
    London
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Current: Griffiths, All time: Moravcik
    Fav Celtic Song:
    YNWA
    Aye. Or all female. But with regards to ITV, the commisionner wants both.
     
  16. Minty 2 x BOTB winner Gold Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2008
    Messages:
    57,654
    Likes Received:
    20,014
    Location:
    London
    Fav Celtic Player:
    Current: Griffiths, All time: Moravcik
    Fav Celtic Song:
    YNWA
    If you're a guy.
     
  17. Momo Sylla

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    Messages:
    1,434
    Likes Received:
    834
    Becky Mann, Zoe Jarman, Charla Lauriston and many others would beg to differ.
     
  18. St.Matt

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2013
    Messages:
    2,847
    Likes Received:
    902
    It will be * anyway. Diverse * though.
     
  19. stew37

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    Messages:
    2,288
    Likes Received:
    975
    Anyone recommend a decent female standup? Sarah Millican and Jo Brand are * dreadful.
     
  20. KRS-1888 Artur Boruc

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2010
    Messages:
    24,168
    Likes Received:
    6,208
    Location:
    Rocabarraigh
    Eddie Izzard would the closest thing to it.