Many local unofficial comedians up and down the county are living in fear that they could receive a slap in the aftermath of any wisecrack, after slapping comedians was legalised in America over the weekend.
Several pubs reported slaps on Monday night after resident jokers went too far with the slagging, a genre which has been a staple diet of drinking establishments in the county for centuries.
Comedians in crowds at football matches have also been warned to think twice about saying anything witty about referees or oppostion managers, as several slaps may be dished out by individuals slappers as per the new ruling.
The Omagh Comedy Club have requested a new licence to prevent slappers clipping anyone they think goes too far with the crowd-baiting technique.
In good news, a formal request to allow retrospective slaps for jokes made in the past about personal stuff has been rejected by the Stormont Appeals Committee. Several politicans held their collective breath, having been accused of being a shower of comedians in the past.
Ironically, a self-confessed comedian from Carland was disappointed not to receive any slaps at the weekend. A local explained that he just wasn’t deadly funny.
For the 19th consecutive year, many film aficionados across the county have resorted to violence after Donaghmore man Conor Grimes and his Coleraine comic compatriot Alan McKee were overlooked at the 87th Academy Awards ceremony in LA on Sunday night.
The Donaghmore Road was said to be ‘ablaze alright‘ after fans of the famous pair went on the rampage in Newmills, Pomeroy and in Grimes’ homeplace of Donaghmore, burning hedges and overturning apple-carts. In Coleraine, angry graffiti was daubed on a wall near the Diamond shopping centre including ‘you can stick your gongs up yer holes‘ and ‘for feck sake, lads‘
A friend of the pair informed us that this may be the last straw:
“We’re rightly hacked off, so we are. That’s 19 years running these lads have been overlooked. I wouldn’t be surprised if the two packed it in and went back to the undertaking. Grimes even changed his name from Connor to Conor in order to appease the American audience. It’s fixed so it is. Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts haven’t a patch on these two.”
McKee reportedly purchased a blue tuxedo in The Moy at the weekend, ‘in case they FaceTime us as a surprise‘ he was heard telling shoppers. Grimes had reportedly been on a no-fry diet since last month and was said to be practising smiling and crying.
The pair, who are currently touring the country with their play ‘‘St Mungo’s Luganulk‘, were unavailable for comment although locals commented that Grimes appeared bleary eyed coming out of an off-licence in Dungannon at 2pm, having stayed up all night to watch the awards show with his loyal dog Malachi.
The news adds to a barren run at the Oscars for the Tyrone movie scene. The last trophy to reside in the county was in 1959 by Galbally director John ‘The Red’ Talbot whose 15-minute subtitled Short Film ‘The Dufflecoat Man’, which depicted a day in the life of a door-to-door pitch fork and rake seller in the area, won a whopping 13 awards.
In the run up to the Oscars, two Hollywood stars who have been nominated for Best Actor have been involved in an ugly social media argument over who should appear on the front cover of this month’s Mid-Ulster Focus magazine.
Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game) and Bradley Cooper (American Sniper) locked horns on Twitter after Tom Hanks suggested it would be a good time for any awardee to appear on the front cover of the latest edition of the mid-Ulster based publication with the Oscars coming up on the 22nd February in California.
Cumberbatch, who made his name as Sherlock Holmes on the BBC, claimed he was a massive fan of Cookstown Sausages and often daydreams of walking along the Coalisland Canal, adding that it would be a dream come true to appear on the front cover of Mid-Ulster Focus and that he was a far out relation of the Corr clan from the area.
Cooper appeared to be alerted by his people of Cumberbatch’s tweet and was quick to retort:
“Away a that a ye Cumberbatch. You wouldn’t know a Cookstown Sausage from a Stewartstown Steak. #chancer.”
before adding three minutes later:
“The Oscars should be held up at Tullyhogue Fort. Such a lovely place. #lovemidulsterfocus #lovemrcorr.”
Disappointingly, the Twitter war descended into a personal slanging match with Cooper calling Cumberbatch ‘Benny Cucumberbitch’ and Cumberbatch retorting repeatedly with the ‘#hangover-was-shite’ hashtag.
At the moment of writing, Mid-Ulster Focus has yet to reveal who they will have on the front cover of their magazine in the run up to the Oscars later in the month, adding that ‘it’ll probably be Mid-Ulster related‘.
You can download a copy of Mid-Ulster Focus for £1 from here – http://midulsterfocus.com/
or click here
Tensions were electric in Coalisland at the tail end of the week after it emerged that local stage expert Jim Farrell was overlooked in the Academy Award nominations for 2013 for best actor. Despite coming up against competition from Daniel Day Lewis and Denzel Washington, Farrell was convinced that his portrayal of ‘Dinger Campbell’ in Dig Her Up (the story of an ex-UDR man who settles in Coalisland and convinces the locals to dig up the rich coal resting under Annagher leading to great riches for the town but succumbs to a bout of consumption which was lying dormant in the pits since the 1920s) was enough to at least earn a nomination never mind lift the damn thing itself.
“Ah what do you expect from them Yanks. They’ve never wanted a Coalisland man about the place. My father used to tell me about his father who was headhunted by Hollywood producers ever since his take on Jesus in the Primate Dixon’s nativity play reached global news. They flew him over to Amerikay but as soon as they heard his accent he was ostracised. And these were the days of silent movies. Same with me. The Tyrone Times said my performance was ‘unusual, unforgettable and jaw-dropping‘. The Ulster Herald said, ‘his performance was fine – I could hardly tell he had a stutter at all.’ What more does the Academy want? Just because I haven’t checked into an addiction clinic or had follicles from my bollocks transferred to my head shouldn’t exclude me from getting recognition from the world’s theatrical critics. Bastards the lot of them.”
Supporters of Farrell’s work have said they’ll block the road from Coalisland to Dungannon tonight in protest, probably for a lock of minutes around midnight. On a brighter note, Farrell has promised to make his debut as a leading actress in June when he plays ‘Susie McIntyre’ in Balls To That (a young Edendork girl decides to spend her summer holidays in Downings instead of Bundoran and has a romance with a billiard-playing ex-priest) which will screen in Aughnacloy, Beragh and Newmills.