Catherine Tate’s show cleared by Ofcom

A Christmas Day episode of Catherine Tate’s comedy sketch show did not breach standards, Ofcom have ruled.

The TV watchdog received 42 complaints about the show which featured a foul-mouthed ‘Nan’ and a Northern Ireland family exchanging gifts of terrorist paraphernalia.

Some complaints related to the character of Nan, who unleashes a stream of bad language once people’s backs are turned.

Others objected to what they considered to be a stereotypical view of a family from Northern Ireland – seen exchanging Christmas gifts such as a balaclavas and a knuckle-duster.

But they also gave their son a present of a chocolate penis, Ofcom noted.

Ofcom asked the BBC to respond to complaints that the material was offensive in light of Rule 2.3 of its Broadcasting Code – which says that in applying generally accepted standards, broadcasters must ensure that material which may cause offence is justified by the context.

The BBC pointed out that the general tone of the programme is very well-recognised, with some characters having become ‘iconic’ – depicted on greetings cards and having catchphrases adopted into everyday use.

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