Words matter. These are the best Satire Quotes from famous people such as Kalki Koechlin, Maajid Nawaz, Garry Trudeau, Michael Flanders, Carl Hiaasen, and they’re great for sharing with your friends.
Everybody should read ‘Slaughterhouse-Five’ by Kurt Vonnegut. This book is about the hypocrisy of war, told in satire, and is hard-hitting and truthful.
Satire is, by definition, offensive. It is meant to make us feel uncomfortable. It is meant to make us scratch our heads, think, do a double-take, and then think again.
Satire is a form of social control, it’s what you do. It’s not personal. It’s a job.
The purpose of satire has been rightly stated as to strip off the veneer of comforting illusion and cosy half truth, and our job, as I see it, is to put it back again!
Good satire comes from anger. It comes from a sense of injustice, that there are wrongs in the world that need to be fixed. And what better place to get that well of venom and outrage boiling than a newsroom, because you’re on the front lines.
Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own.
Mike Judge is my Jonathan Swift, and I say that because I don’t know any other satirists. But the problem with satire is that it’s so easily misinterpreted.
In a satire, you need foolishness.
I never really considered ‘Quantum & Woody’ a comedic book or a funny book. I never thought of it as a satire.
The most brilliant satire of all time was ‘A Modest Proposal’ by Jonathan Swift. You’ll notice how everything got straightened out in Ireland within days of that coming out.
I’m a human person, so I do have some sort of compassion for even the people I’m mocking. But at the end of the day, I’m the little guy taking on the big guy. That to me is not bullying. That’s satire.
In the old days of literature, only the very thick-skinned – or the very brilliant – dared enter the arena of literary criticism. To criticise a person’s work required equal measures of erudition and wit, and inferior critics were often the butt of satire and ridicule.
The idea of 24-hour news, if you really step back, is pretty insane. Just even saying ’24-hour news’ almost has satire laced in it.
The sole purpose of a crown is to make anyone not wearing one feel like an insignificant pauper. They’re obscene to the point of satire.
Fools are my theme, let satire be my song.
Satire of satire tends to be self-canceling, and deliberate shock tactics soon lose their ability to shock, especially when they’re too deliberate.
There is a satire that exists in ‘My Arm,’ but there is also an honoring of some of the stronger ideas that I’ve raided from visual art.
The mark of a really great satire is its ability to seem prophetic, and I think that the television culture that film predicted really came true in the age of reality television and is a testament to how great it really is.
Political satire became obsolete when they awarded Henry Kissinger the Nobel Peace Prize.
A lot of French comedy is satire.
‘Post 9/11 Blues’ is an observational satire about the surreal circus of fear at that time. It’s a generational thing.
On the other side of that coin, and far outweighing it, is the fact that I’ve been able to use genre of Fantasy/Horror and express my opinion, talk a little about society, do a little bit of satire and that’s been great, man. A lot of people don’t have that platform.
Satire is traditionally the weapon of the powerless against the powerful.
If you write satire, the guilty pleasure these days is that there’s just so much material about. On the other hand, if you have a family it can be depressing.
I think the big lesson I’ve learned is that it’s very hard to write satire in America because almost immediately, whatever you’ve thought of turns out to come true, or sometimes it already was true.
Satire doesn’t effect change.
I think you’re born with a comedy gene, and you can’t teach timing, and you can’t teach satire, pathos.
I’m a satirist, so I’ve got boxing gloves on if the person is worthy of satire. But I’m not an assassin. If that ever happens, it’s only because something happened during the interview that got me going, and then I had to translate my feelings to the mouth of the character.
It seems like there’s a lot of people who just do not understand satire. They think it’s weird. There’s people who just don’t understand you portray something or just explore a character, it means you’re condoning it, saying this is the way to live.
Occasionally, the horrors of life in North Korea do show up in our American satire.
Satire lies about literary men while they live and eulogy lies about them when they die.
We’ve managed to keep a spirit of fun, I guess, of urban satire and finding new and odd interesting angles to the ways of life to put on the stage.
I only aim at the powerful. When satire is aimed at the powerless, it is not only cruel – it’s vulgar.
You can’t debate satire. Either you get it or you don’t.
‘Veep’ is a great satire of democracy.
I found out recently that my ‘Good News’ show has a big following in North Korea and the Vatican City! Who knew Kim Jong-un and the Pope liked fast-paced satire?
But in terms of satire and comedy, our biggest and earliest influence was Mad magazine.
Satire is focused bitterness.
I liked ‘Repo Man.’ Satire.
I have never knowingly, I swear to God, written satire. The word connotes exaggeration of the foibles of mankind. To me, mankind just has foibles. You don’t have to push it!
I was very involved in political satire, and I’d been writing parody for ‘Mad’ and ‘National Lampoon,’ so I made up some strange story about Gerald Ford.
Tomorrow is a satire on today, And shows its weakness.
The reason I wrote political satire was because I thought it – politics – was important… that public policy was important. Then I transitioned into books, then into radio.
I would play hooky from school and spend all day in the movie theaters. Consequently, I learned satire in all its subtle forms.
If all you have is satire, your show will close. Even if all you have is comedy, your show will close. The hardest thing is not making people laugh: the hardest thing is building an emotional story. Any child can make a group of adults laugh.
It can take the uninitiated a minute to realize that ‘Gangnam Style’ is satire.
By the very nature of satire or parody, you have to love and respect your target and respect it enough to understand every aspect of it, so you can more effectively make fun of it.
If you’re going to get into social criticism with absurdity and satire, you can’t be politically correct when you do that.
I love ‘Glee.’ I cry all the time when I watch ‘Glee’ because I don’t know if it’s satire or melodrama and that makes me feel like the writing is aware of itself, and that makes it okay to cry.
Satire also allows you to make fun of every different aspect. It allows you to make fun of both sides. It allows you to make fun of everything, really, so you can do it in a harmless way.
I wrote an ITV drama in the 1960s, a satire on management theory that starred Leonard Rossiter. I’m also a poet and have had work in the ‘Spectator.’
Rush Limbaugh’s pathetic abuse of logic, his absurd pomposity, his relentless self-promotion, his ridiculous ego – now those, friends, are appropriate targets for satire.
I love the satire and skewering of comedy writing.
The show is a satire, which gives us freedom to do anything we want. Satire is the magic word that wipes away any culpability. The media is jealous of this freedom.
There is no place for a person like me in a world that only takes itself seriously. Satire is so necessary but fairly ineffective.
Even for natives, French satire is rarely laugh-out-loud funny. Its unspoken punch line is typically that things have gone irrevocably wrong, and the government is to blame.
I think it’s legitimate to do satire. If you’re going to write a book of satire on Marilyn Monroe or Madonna, you’re not going to get their permission, because you’re going to make fun of them!
I think that there’s a real appetite for opinion-driven satire, not just generic making jokes about what’s in the news but actually point-of-view-driven stuff.
Crime, horror, and satire each aim to reveal an ugly or uncomfortable truth: one that, after the reveal, will ensure we’ll never be the same. The big difference between those genres being the effect they create.
Look, I don’t have the millions of dollars that Exxon has. But I’ve got comedy. I’ve got satire. I’ve got stars.
Wyndham Lewis is basically a pessimist, thinking of human beings as doomed animals or determinist machines. His theory of satire is based on this view, and he finds plenty of evidence to support it in contemporary practice.
What’s great about ‘The Daily Show’ is I can use satire and push the envelope. I couldn’t do that anywhere else. Even if I was a journalist.
There are thousands of ways to make people laugh – satire, black comedy, slapstick.
Drag is pastiche and parody and satire. Drag queens are never meant to be stars. We make fun of stars. Drag queens are the people that ‘point’ at the star.
The trouble with most comedians who try to do satire is that they are essentially brash, noisy and indelicate people who have to use a sledge hammer to smash a butterfly.
I came to Hollywood originally writing comedy and writing satire.
The importance of satire is bringing more people to the table. There are a lot of average citizens who aren’t interested in politics and would be more interested if it’s brought to them in a comedic, funny, satirical way.
Effective satire has to be almost identical to the subject that it is skewering.
Gentle mockery or sharp satire aimed at Christians and their leaders have been replaced by abuse of Christianity itself.
Conventional show-biz savvy held that Americans hated to be the objects of satire.
I think ‘Death Race 2000’ is a classic, but it’s a classic from the 1970s, and I think it’s a particular kind of drive-in-exploitation movie satire masterpiece, and it was very much a movie of its time.
It is difficult not to write satire.
In TV writing, Armando Iannucci’s satire ‘The Thick of It’ is brilliant – equal parts hysterically funny, terrifyingly believable, and Oh-my-God-I-can’t-believe-he-actually-said-that – and it’s got the most satisfyingly creative insults ever.
Not all Tories are atrocious heartless fiends, I concede. But those who wield hunger as a weapon while claiming their own meals on expenses, are beyond satire.
For me, ‘Gulabo Sitabo’ is a satire… I wanted to do satire and I think it’s turned out exactly how I wanted it to be.
As ‘Possession’ progresses, it seems less and less like the usual satire about academia and more like something by Jorge Luis Borges.
Praise undeserved, is satire in disguise.
I think comedy and satire are the strongest ways to deal with very serious themes and very painful themes.
Satire is a weapon, and it can be quite cruel.
Comic book readers tend to be pretty secular and anti-authoritarian; nothing is above satire in their eyes.
Satire makes people learn something more than being lectured.
The British ballads became a new kind of form in their hand. And out of them came the blues, a new kind of song of commentary and satire, a song form which, after all, has become the main musical form of the whole human species.
It’s a one-day story of a guy called Newton Kumar, and the backdrop is election: how the most powerful tool we have as citizens is vote but how we don’t utilise it. We really don’t give importance to it. It talks about democracy; it’s a satire, a black comedy.
Social satire has been around since people have been around.
Satire is fascinating stuff. It’s deadly serious, and when politics begin to break down, there is a drift towards satire, because it’s the only thing that makes any sense.
If you look at ‘Network’ or any kind of satire, it’s fundamentally unemotional in some ways.
‘Charlie Hebdo’ had been nondenominational in its satire, sticking its finger into the sensitivities of Jews and Christians, too – but only Muslims responded with threats and acts of terrorism.
Satire is a lesson, parody is a game.
Life serves up satire. Unfortunately. Or fortunately. I don’t know. You have to reel it in to drama.
Whatever is going on in the news and whoever is in the spotlight is up for grabs and fodder for satire.
A lot of people tend to glorify the role of satire and comedians. They put them up as role models, as fighters for the truth and against tyranny, and I think that’s overrated.
I consciously decided to make both ‘Sammy’s Hill’ and ‘Sammy’s House’ more of a warm satire and not go the route of writing a dark and bitter book about D.C.
Ksenia Sobchak as president is like Sergei Shnurov as an artist. It’s satire. It’s a very high-level art project.
We live in an age that’s very suspicious of preachy political rhetoric, which means that there’s room for art that approaches these issues from the side – as satire, as parody, or as a kind of outlandish speculative proposition.
You can’t make up anything anymore. The world itself is a satire. All you’re doing is recording it.
‘Dear White People’ started a conversation about race. It’s such a difficult thing to talk about, especially in America because of our history. I love that you can confront it with humour and with satire.
We never dealt with satire or suggestive material. Although some of our films were broad parodies or burlesques of popular dramatic themes, there was no conscious attempt at being either sarcastic or offensive.
Magoo’s appeal lies in our hostility toward an older generation. But he’s not only nearsighted physically. His mind is selective of what it sees, too. That is where the humor, the satire lies, in the difference between what he thinks he sees and reality as we see it.
A lot of political music to me can be rather pedantic and corny, and when it’s done right – like Bruce Springsteen or Jackson Browne or great satire from Randy Newman, there’s nothing better.
I wrote my first play as extra credit for my fourth grade English class. ‘Can Helen Stop Smoking’ was a satire on the ill effects of cigarette smoking. My friend Vicki Haugabrook played as Helen and I directed the show. At the time, my brother Vince was leading the campaign to get our grandmother to quit.
I cry all the time when I watch ‘Glee’ because I don’t know if it’s satire or melodrama and that makes me feel like the writing is aware of itself, and that makes it OK to cry.
I think satire is most effective when you love the thing you’re satirizing rather than… have a vendetta against it.
Politics is a thing that is kind of the same over and over and over again. But we have to find new ways of poking fun at it and letting the air out of people and satirizing things that are worthy of satire.
Some readers took ‘Heaven’s My Destination’ as a satire on Christianity and the Midwest, but today it reads like a loving comedy.
Paul Verhoeven is one of my favourite directors. I love his ability to mash extreme violence with humour and satire.
It struck me that working digitally with a small crew, I could lay out a general plan for Famous and hope for mistakes which would create something more than satire and something less than truthful reality.
Regardless of what amount of satire or sarcasm is heard in what I do, the reason it connects with people is because the fun and the wildness in it is sincere.
We are almost in a time beyond jokes, beyond satire. When the Trump era is called the ‘post-truth’ period, then this is the greatest joke of all, albeit quite depressing.
I think satire suffered under Obama, but not because of Obama. People are more sensitive now than ever, and strong satirical voices are stifled because of that. I don’t think a Clinton presidency would change that.
Satire works best when it hews close to the line between the outlandish and the possible – and as that line continues to grow thinner, the satirist’s task becomes ever more difficult.
My show in Egypt was called, ‘The Show,’ or, ‘Al Bernameg’ in Arabic. Basically, it was a political satire show. It started on Internet by three, four-minute episodes, and then it evolved into a live show in a theater, which was something that was unprecedented in the Arab world.
Indonesian people don’t get satire; that’s the thing. There’s no thought in our humor.
People keep saying you can’t satirize Trump because he’s beyond satire, but it’s not difficult to just let him out and let him walk upon the stage and say his own words.
Satire has been a sanctuary historically monopolized by progressives, originally used as a discreet tool against Western religious fundamentalism.
Status is always ripe for satire, status is always good for comedy.
AJ’ is a very special movie to me. I have been watching Dinesh and Rajkumar from their initial days, and have witnessed their evolution. The film talks about the bond shared between a father and a son who wants to fulfil his father’s dreams. It’s a cross between a comedy of errors and a political satire.
I like the George Romero films, which were really great, social satire movies; really twisted.
I never see myself as writing satire. I think I write about people as they really are, without making them better or worse.
I’ve never been much drawn towards satire of any kind.
Jaspal Bhatti saab was the one who uplifted the image of Sikhs on the national and international stage. There used to be a lot of satire on Sikhs earlier. A guy wearing a turban was portrayed as a joke, but since Bhatti saab entered cinema he changed the entire perspective and idiom of Sardar jokes.
Shelley Jackson’s ‘Half Life’ is the textual equivalent of an installation, a multivocal, polymorphous, dialogic, dystopian satire wrapped around a murder mystery wrapped around a bildungsroman.
I’m uncomfortable with the word satire. In the U.K., there’s quite a bit of sledgehammer weight to that word, which is the antithesis of the subtle approach I strive for.
There is a place in this world for satire, but there is a time when satire ends and intolerance and bigotry towards religious beliefs of others begins.
I write for fun. I had written a kind of media satire, but I doubt it will see the light of day. It was just a personal project.
When satire is aimed at the powerless, it is not only cruel – it’s vulgar.
‘Gulabo Sitabo’ is a simple satire on life. It’s a genre I have tried for the first time.
The Irish and British, they love satire, it’s a large part of the culture.
I don’t want to sound disingenuous here – controversy is obviously good for business, especially if your business is satire. And it does amplify the discussion – in my view, a good thing.
I’m looking at some comedic horror films because I have often been accused of being too dark. I’m not dark, not compared with ‘Saw’ or anything like that. So I’m looking at live-action horror films, but not slasher ones – ones that have humor and maybe some social satire.
When you have satire, it has to be real. No matter how outrageous the comedy becomes, you have to believe in the characters.