Fury over Brand's cancer joke

Comic reported to TV watchdogs

Russell Brand has landed in trouble with the parents of a cancer victim over a joke he crackd on Channel 4.

Patricia Lowe, whose 15-year-old daughter Elizabeth died of leukaemia in 2005, has complained to TV watchdog Ofcom about Brand's 'deeply offensive' comments on Big Brother's Big Mouth.

She said she was 'shocked and upset' by comments made on January 14 that she took to refer to young patients who lose their hair after chemotherapy treatment .

The comic said: 'You know that kid at school who has six months off because he ain't been well and the kid comes back to school and you have to have a special assembly and they say everyone has to be nice to Trevor - no one mention that baseball cap he wears all the time.'

Mrs Lowe, from Newham, East London, told the London Evening Standard : 'I was astonished that he could make a joke about children suffering from cancer. The treatment they go through is so vicious. How can anybody make fun of this?'

'It seems Channel 4 is morally bankrupt. Nothing is held back, nothing is off-limits.'

Brand replied: 'Having grown up as the Only Child of a single mother who had cancer three times between my seventh and 16th birthdays, cancer is a disease that has personally blighted my life.

'The joke in question mentioned no specific condition but perhaps... it is possible that I have sought to cope with the horror of serious illness using humour - sometimes it's the only weapon we have.'

Published: 26 Jan 2007

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