Prominent comedian Katherine Ryan attacked gender tokenism in the BBC's satirical panel show Mock the Week in her podcast Telling Everybody Everything.
Ryan, who has not appeared on the show since 2015, said she boycotted her because she thought her appearances were used to distract Mock the Week criticism for lack of diversity.
In the panel discussion moderated by Dara O & # 39; Briain, two teams of three compete to make the best jokes about current affairs. She has been at BBC Two for 18 seasons.
However, it has been criticized for alienating female guests and viewers because of its "bad" humor and competitive atmosphere. Such accusations led to the BBC banning only male panel shows in 2014.
Pictured: Katherine Ryan, pictured at the NME Awards at the O2 Academy in Brixton, London, Britain on February 12, 2020. Ryan spoke during her podcast & # 39;
In her podcast, Ryan – a Canadian comedian based in the UK – said she chose not to appear on Mock the Week to protest "feminism on the pedestal" or to raise a woman and deny her other opportunities.
"I love Mock the Week," she said. & # 39; I love Dara, I think this show has provided a platform for so many British comedians.
“But I had to stop because I knew that every time I was booked for this show, I took food out of another woman's mouth.
"I never took James Acaster's place, I never took Ed Gamble's place on this show, I always took a job 100% of the time from one of my colleagues.
& # 39; I thought, "OK, I had my time on this show and now I have to give it to someone else."
"As much as I loved it – it really helped me to open up a new audience, I loved to go on there and play with all the other comics.
"But I couldn't do it just because of that -" No, Mock the Week has no problem with women, look, Katherine Ryan is on the show. "
& # 39; Nuh uh. Now look, they'll let two of us go on in the same week! & # 39;
Katherine Ryan (second from right) on Mock the Week – before she left the show – alongside a number of male comedians, including presenter Dara O & # 39; Briain (bottom center) and Hugh Dennis (top left)
37-year-old Ryan also criticized Mock the Week for not offering her the same coverage as her male counterparts on the show, saying, “I was only allowed to do the stand-up round once. And they always made me sit in the same chair.
“Do you remember that we were always on the right, in the middle, if anything? One of us menstruating? It had leak protection? & # 39;
Ryan offered further insight into the industry and said that she still had no appearances because the producers thought her material was too "feminine heavy".
Female entertainers on TV also have a higher standard of beauty than male colleagues, she said.
Pictured: Katherine Ryan appears on January 27, 2020 on the TV show "This Morning" in London, United Kingdom. Ryan is also known for her numerous appearances on the panel show "8 out of 10 cats" and for her Netflix comedy special "Glitter Room".
“As a guest, I spend a lot of time on TV, and I was told to wear down my hair because I look less strict. I have had my dressing room combed by people with zero experience in fashion editing to make sure they like what I wear.
"Most men just have to do something clean," she continued. "They can't even do it half the time."
According to The Times, The British Comedy Guide stated that Mock the Week only included two women's comics in the same program in 2017 and in its 162nd episodes.
The presenter Dara O & # 39; Briain supported the call for greater diversity on the show, but suggested that guests could feel like a "token woman" by creating quotas for female panelists.
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