Gavin & Stacey Christmas special only receives ELEVEN complaints to Ofcom for the use of homophobic slur in Fairytale of New York rendition
The Gavin And Stacey special secured the highest overnight Christmas ratings in 12 years when it aired, as it was watched by an average of 11.6 million viewers.
But some viewers weren’t too pleased when Nessa and Bryn sang a rendition of Fairytale of New York and the word ‘f****t’ was not omitted from the song.
The Sun reported on Friday that despite online reaction to the song, a spokesperson for Ofcom informed the publication that only eleven people complained about the homophobic slur.
Taking issue: Gavin & Stacey Christmas special only received eleven complaints to Ofcom for the use of the homophobic slur in Fairytale of New York song, it was revealed on Friday
When approached for comment by Mail Online, an Ofcom spokesperson stated: ‘The BBC is required to assess and investigate complaints about its programmes initially.
‘But if complainants are unhappy with how their complaint has been addressed by the BBC, they should bring it to us and we’ll examine it.’
At the time, the BBC defended the decision to air the song in its uncensored version, and they declined to comment further when contacted.
Not up to them: When approached for comment, an Ofcom spokesperson stated: ‘The BBC is required to assess and investigate complaints about its programmes initially’
Following the episode, a spokesperson cited its continued popularity among audiences as they said: ‘Fairytale of New York is a very popular, much-loved Christmas song played widely throughout the festive season, and the lyrics are well-established with the audience.’
Ruth Jones also defended the word ‘f****t’ being used in the special where the characters sang The Pogues’ popular Christmas song, with the co-creator saying they were remaining true to the characters by leaving the word uncensored.
The song’s lyrics: ‘You scumbag, you maggot, you cheap-lousy f****t’ have proved controversial with calls for the homophobic slur to be censored from the track.
Response: Earlier this week, Ruth Jones defended the word ‘f****t’ being used in the special as she said they were remaining true to the characters by leaving the word uncensored
Ruth told The Sun that while the Christmas special is being shown in a ‘different climate’ to the original series which wrapped in 2010, she said the moment is not going to be ‘intentionally hurtful’.
She said: ‘It is a different climate. But we have to remain true to the characters, to who they were.
‘Characters in Gavin & Stacey are kind and big-hearted, I believe. So I think no one is going to be intentionally hurtful.
‘But by the same token, they’re not necessarily going to be completely politically correct or be aware of political correctness.’
Christmas special: Ruth said that the Christmas special is being shown in a ‘different climate’ to the original series which wrapped in 2009
Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell previously told The Times he objected to the BBC’s decision to not censor the slur when played on the radio.
He said: ‘The BBC would not screen a Christmas song with the n-word in it. It would be deemed deeply prejudiced and unacceptable. So why the double standards when it comes to the f-word?’
Adding that the word is ‘pejorative to the LGBT community’, he said: ‘It would send completely the wrong signal. It will give comfort to homphobes everywhere.’
Defending it: Ruth claimed by leaving the sing uncensored it helped them ‘remain true to the characters, to who they were… I think no one is going to be intentionally hurtful’
The Pogues singer Shane MacGowan previously discussed the word being used in the song, where it is sang by Kirsty MacColl.
In a statement given to Virgin Media Television’s The Tonight Show, MacGowan, who also co-wrote the song, said the lyric was sang by a character who is not intended to be a nice or wholesome person.
He said: ‘The word was used by the character because it fitted with the way she would speak and with her character. She is not supposed to be a nice person, or even a wholesome person.
Uncensored: The BBC has also defended its decision to air the song in its uncensored version, citing its continued popularity among audiences
‘She is a woman of a certain generation at a certain time in history and she is down on her luck and desperate. Her dialogue is as accurate as I could make it but she is not intended to offend!
‘She is just supposed to be an authentic character and not all characters in songs and stories are angels or even decent and respectable, sometimes characters in songs and stories have to be evil or nasty in order to tell the story effectively.
‘If people don’t understand that I was trying to accurately portray the character as authentically as possible, then I am absolutely fine with them bleeping the word, but I don’t want to get into an argument.’
Popular: The Gavin And Stacey special secured the highest overnight Christmas ratings in 12 years when it aired, as it was watched by an average of 11.6 million viewers
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