“Fox got the creative vision of the show, that it has to be funny while it treads sensitively on certain Muslim issues,” Darling told the Hollywood Reporter.
I’m aware that Canadians – and especially Canadian media executives – are programmed to say things like this, but here’s where I really start to worry. Treading sensitively might sound like a prudent course for a politician, but it’s a sure recipe for bad comedy, and I’d like to hope that whoever ends up making Fox’s version of Little Mosque – no writer has been attached to the show yet – will not tread lightly around any issues; Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Jewish, Jain, Hindu or Zoroastrian.
The best comedy is cruel and irreverent and Fox, for all its many flaws (Family Guy, I’m looking at you), is aware of this irrevocable comic law. Anyone hoping to make a comedy that “treads sensitively” would have to either be a fool – or a Canadian. This is, after all, a country that’s made itself an international laughing stock in the past few months with a series of Star Chamber trials convened by national and provincial Human Rights Commissions aiming to proscribe free speech and freedom of the press, all in the interest of making sure we all “tread sensitively.”
Canadians like to flatter themselves that we’re a funny people; we’re funny, all right, but in all the wrong ways, I’m sorry to say.