Francis Martin Patrick "Frankie" Boyle (born 16 August 1972) is a Scottish comedian and writer known predominantly for his cynical and very dark material. The Glaswegian's uncompromising humour has gained him many loyal fans and the constant fury of the Moral Guardians. It goes without saying that if you're easily offended, and aren't aware of who Frankie Boyle is, it's best to move on and forget this page ever existed.
Whilst he got his first big break at The Stand Comedy Club in Edinburgh, Boyle reached a mainstream audience due to his appearance as a regular on Mock the Week. Described as the "dark heart of Mock the Week" by host Dara Ó Briain, he quickly became the most popular member of the panel show. However, his risqué jokes soon caused friction with the production team and The BBC Trust. Eventually, Boyle decided he had enough and left the show permanently toward the end of 2009, claiming that the higher-ups were too scared of "frightening the horses".
In November 2010, Channel 4 released his new sketch show, Frankie Boyle's Tramadol Nights in which a joke involving Katie Price's disabled son Harvey caused an extreme wave of controversy and arguably almost put an end to his TV careernote , despite it being recycled from his 2010 stand up tour/DVD. While Boyle isn't withdrawing from public life completely, he has said his latest stand-up tour The Last Days of Sodom is going to be his last as he wants to spend more time with his family and is tired of touring. Although his previous tour ''I would happily punch every one of you in the face'' (Released on DVD as ''If I could reach out through your TV and strangle you, I would'') was also stated to be his last, so you never know.
Boyle made a return to television in August 2012 to host a special for Channel Four entitled The Boyle Variety Show, which was a mixture of Frankie doing stand up and several other acts including comedians and musical performances in the style of a Royal Variety Show. While it was generally well received, Boyle managed to stir up more controversy with a series of jokes about the 2012 Paralympics (Which Channel Four has exclusive broadcasting rights to) on his Twitter account. It is currently unknown if Channel 4 will be working with Frankie again in the future.
Surprisingly, however, the increasingly-unsettled context of British and European politics (particularly the lead-up to the 2015 Scottish referendum, the 2016 "Brexit" vote and the election of Donald Trump to the US Presidency) has become a well-spring of satire, which catapulted Frankie back to The BBC (first in the Autopsy iPlayer specials, and then back to BBC Two via Frankie Boyle's New World Order). Perhaps unusually for someone who has spent so much of his career lampooning Political Correctness Gone Mad, his recent shows and editorials lean hard to the left, which has helped him find a resurgent audience in the field of British comedy.
- Pitch-Black-To-The-Point-Of-No-Return-On-An-Infinite-Journey-Into-Hell Comedy
- Berserk Button: Though this is what set him off on stage once, and had him taking a pause in between touring because he was close to a breakdown. Being a comedian is a job too, and you can get overworked it seems.
- Boomerang Bigot: Played for Laughs. A great deal of his material is based around how violent/greedy/all-around horrible Scots are.
- Death Seeker:
- Where his TV career is concerned, at least. Given how much he manages to severely cause outrage amongst the tabloids and the moral guardians (As well as landing the TV companies themselves in hot water) one has to wonder about why he would repeatedly put himself in such a position of hatred. It's also arguably what led to his departure from Mock the Week, the cancellation of Tramadol Nights and most recently his Twitter jokes about the Paralympics which seem have put his relationship with Channel Four in serious jeopardy.. Some believe Frankie's desire to retire sooner rather than later has led to him trying to make sure that nobody will bother him to come back. He even referred to his recent Boyle Variety Show as his "Career suicide note" in an interview for a TV Guide included in British tabloid The Sun (For whom he is also a weekly columnist).
- In his autobiography My Shit Life So Far, Frankie makes it clear how much he learnt to loathe and despise most people involved in commissioning and production of television shows, especially the BBC. His experience was one of the performing talent working in opposition to the execs, with the TV suits being keen, above all, to avoid even the slightest whiff of career-breaking controversy or edge, often at thne expense of any creative originality in the shows. Executive Meddling was something he learnt to loathe, and exercise of the Executive Veto happened frequently and drove him to the point where he was asking if it was worth the effort. Frankie tried to throw in lots of outrageous and deliberately offensive material when it was too late to edit it out, just to make the point.
- Everyone Has Standards:
- He's infamous for his dark sense of humour but on Room 101, he says he hates celebrity atheists. He states that while he is an atheist, he wouldn't be so judgemental towards someone who needs faith to help find comfort during hopeless times.
- Transphobia is something he won't stoop to. When Ricky Gervais made an entire stand up set about how he should start identifying as a chimpanzee now that "people can identify as whatever they want", Frankie called him out for picking on trans people instead of writing any actual jokes.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: When asked by his daughter, "Daddy, what's the best thing in the world?" he didn't have to think twice before answering "You are, sweetheart. You're the best thing in the world." To which she replied, "For me it's sausages."
- Freudian Excuse: He said at the end of one of his stand-up DVDs that the reason he is "like what he's like" is because his grandad made him have sex with a "mermaid" as a child while he watched, when "the old bastard" was dead, he went back to the attic to where the mermaid was kept and found that it was a dead monkey with its legs sewn together.Frankie Boyle: You remind me of that monkey, Johnny.
- Hidden Depths: While it's clear he's VERY cynical and generally going for the darkest possible facet of comedy, when he's been sat down to talk about real life issues, particularly regarding Scotland, he's a very articulate and respectful person.
- Humans Are Bastards: His work holds a very cynical outlook on people and society as a whole. A frequent source of his material is the latest horror someone has inflicted on the world.
- Hypocritical Humor: Often points it out in people who give him criticism about certain things he believes in.
- Insult Backfire: When someone mentioned his likeness to one of The Proclaimers.Frankie Boyle: "Someone told me I look like one of the Proclaimers. One of them?! Theyre twins, you daft bastard!"
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: The "jerk" part doesn't need explaining considering what pretty much everything on this page says about him (to drive the point further home, the names of his live shows include "I Would Happily Punch Every One Of You In The Face" and "Morons, I Can Heal You"). However, to quote Wikipedia, he "said that the situation in Palestine "seems to be, in essence, apartheid", concluding that he had reached this position after watching a documentary about life in Palestine that had made him cry". There's also the below quote.
- N-Word Privileges: A Scotsman whose favorite target is Scotland.
- Invoked in one show where a black guest uses the term, and Frankie remembers a (white) guy telling him "you can't ever use the word nigger for any reason." "You've just used it." And, answering exactly the way Frankie hoped he would, "No I didn't."
- Panel Game: He made appearances on several, such as 8 Out of 10 Cats, Would I Lie to You?, Argumental, Never Mind the Buzzcocks and You Have Been Watching.
- The Quisling: Invoked in the Mock the Week Christmas Special, where Dara showed a picture drawn by an 11-year-old, depicting the studio being invaded by Daleks... and Frankie as their leader! Frankie's only reaction was to angrily inform Dara that he was the Daleks's creator, not just their leader.
- Refuge in Audacity: More like a second home, really. Summed up with this from DaraDara Ó Briain: "There's a line in the sand, right, and you can't even see the line in the sand. You're actually out of sand into, like, tropical tundra regions."
- Screwed by the Network: Frankie was less than pleased when the very first episode of his new TV series Frankie Boyle's New World Order, billed as a satirical and acid commentary on the previous week's news, went out. Unknown to him, Executive Meddling had severely edited the broadcast show to make it look as if he was tamely approving of the BBC's editorial news line and sympathetic to government whilst hostile to the opposing Labour Party. A barrage of criticism followed from fans who were asking him when he'd been bought by the establishment, and whether selling out had been the price he paid for getting a TV show. Frankie pointed out, among other things, that he had not been responsible for the way the show had been edited and he had no knowledge of how it had been edited - he said the original recording session had been a lot longer and the true, acid-cynical, Frankie Boyle had been present both in comment and in humour - not that you'd have known it from the edit. People in the studio audience confirmed this and said the tame broadcast edition was not the show they'd attended.
- Self-Deprecation: He's about as kind to himself as he is to his other targets. A fact that's often forgotten by his critics.
- The Teetotaler: Regularly describes himself as a teetotal alcoholic.
- Token Evil Team Mate: The comedy equivalent on Mock the Week, and any other panel show he appears on.
- When He Smiles: He has quite a charming smile for someone so cynical.