It’s been voted the funniest joke at the Edinburgh Fringe – but Sheffield comedians reckon the honour is tongue in cheek.
York-based funnyman Rob Auton’s one-liner, ‘I heard a rumour that Cadbury is bringing out an Oriental chocolate bar. Could be a Chinese Wispa’, won a contest run by TV channel Dave.
His cringe-making wisecrack took 24 per cent of viewers’ votes from 20 jokes shortlisted.
Among the runners-up was Sheffield-born Alfie Moore, who grew up in Hillsborough and still comes back to perform at the Last Laugh Comedy Club at Sheffield City Hall.
Alfie, currently in Edinburgh with Viva Alf’s Vegas, came third in the same vote with the line, ‘I’m in a same-sex marriage... it’s a woman but the sex is always the same’.
Former policeman Alfie said: “I’m not normally a one-line comic and prefer to tell stories, but occasionally I’ll throw one in. I would take the Dave award with a pinch of salt because the people who compile the shortlist haven’t heard all the jokes at the festival – they only look at a small selection.
“The award is a bit tongue in cheek – the fringe is very competitive and there’s hundreds of shows, with thousands of gags.
“I think my joke is fairly funny but it’s one of many – a lot of my jokes are about my time in the police.”
Alfie, who is heading back to Sheffield to give comedy lessons to Sheffield businesspeople before they have a go at stand-up for charity in October, added: “One of my favourites is, ‘I think the police are well-respected. Lots of people used to say to me, ‘I couldn’t do your job’. I’d say that’s because you’re handcuffed’.”
Toby Foster, BBC Radio Sheffield presenter who runs the Last laugh Comedy Club, added: “The Chinese Wispa joke has been around for years. Before the Beijing Olympics, Cadbury’s made a special Wispa bar.
“I’ve been up to Edinburgh this year and seen loads of shows. There is a lot of really good stuff.
“But it’s not fair to judge Rob Auton based on the one-liner – he probably just chucked it in as a filler during his set and it’s been picked out for the competition.
“One of my favourite one-liners is by Steve Best, when he talks about how his grandad died trying to stop a fight.
“He adds, ‘Mind you, it was World War Two’.”
■ What is your funniest one-line joke? Email email@example.com or write to Newsdesk, The Star, York Street, Sheffield, S1 1PU.
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