Ricky Gervais’ Blasphemous Magazine Cover

Remember how comedian Ricky Gervais submitted a picture of himself, dressed as a clown with a gun in his mouth, for the cover of Rolling Stone? They rejected it because it was “too offensive” and Gervais said he didn’t even bother to submit his second choice: himself, shirtless, holding a mic stand as if he were nailed to a crucifix.

Rolling Stone may have said no, but New Humanist magazine said yes! The UK publication will be using that second image for its September/October issue:

Inside you’ll find our interview with Gervais, in which he discusses his new show Life’s Too Short, offence (“You have the right to be offended, and I have the right to offend you. But no one has the right to never be offended”) and losing his childhood faith.

The issue goes on sale August 25th. You can subscribe here.

For anyone interested, here’s the original image:


(Photo by Nadav Kander)


About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=544525141 Lauren Ely

    Dude, what has he been doing?  I want his diet secrets, he looks FAB!!!

    • Sven

      Photoshop?

  • surfactant

    smokin hot.

  • Anonymous

    Wow, good man! I was never a fan of The Office, but Gervais in stand-up comedy and an outspoken critic of religion certainly gets my admiration.

  • http://oddboyout.blogspot.com/ oddboyout

    It’s really giving me an Andres Serrano’s “Piss Christ” vibe.

  • ChrisG

    Oh, he just wanted to show off his new skinny bod. LOL. Luv that Ricky!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Reg-Metcalf/1031110428 Reg Metcalf

    “never a fan of ‘the office’”?!! that’s an atheist for ya: immune from religion, but not from bad taste. ;-)

    • Mike Renwick

      Bring on bad taste every time it conflicts with mythology!

    • The_Holy_Cunt_of_Mary

      BAAAARFFFFF!!!!

  • Anonymous

    Try Paleo Diet, Lauren

  • Nancy

    WooHoo, Hottie tottie!!!!

    • Valhar2000

      You know, I tell youngsters these days about the time when Ricky Gervais was ugly, and they don’t believe me…

  • Mrschili

    I LOVE this image, specifically BECAUSE it’s offensive (well, not to ME, but I suspect it is to most Christians).  Yum.

    • SJH

      You love something because it is offensive? Hmm…
      Why do you have such frustration and anger at a whole group of people that it would cause you to want to offend them. Is it because you think they have done something to offend someone else. Are you now in the same boat as them?

  • Fitta

    Ricky is a hero – an outspoken atheist who feel proud ab out it .  We need more like him!

  • http://silveroutlinedwindow.wordpress.com/ Shannon

    thank you Ricky, on more than one level ;)

  • http://www.theaunicornist.com Mike D

    Dude, Ricky Gervais has whipped himself into pretty respectable shape.

  • http://twitter.com/ProNetworkBuild Lonny Dunn

    I think his point is that he make cracks about Hollywood, and people who took themselves WAY too seriously took offense at that.   It is a play upon that theme.   He is  TRYING to offend in an over the top photo.    I think it’s humorous that Atheists would actually buy into this.  This is more publicity stunt than Ricky addresses his belief system.

    I Tweet at @ProNetworkBuild

    • jms

      Perhaps he just thought it was funny? 

      • SJH

        Yeah, except that this is not funny. Regardless of your belief system, how is this humor? This is obviously a shallow attempt to offend. I feel sorry for him that he has nothing better to do with his time.

  • dauntless

    They didn’t reject his clown picture because it was too offensive. They rejected it because it wasn’t sexy enough to sell magazines.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_QWQPKEAP3GDQ5TUFTRTRPHSC2U Paul Rinzler

    I don’t get it.  Is the microphone supposed to represent the idea that we can’t ask God verbally whether William’s Lane Craig’s support of the Kalam argument doesn’t reject the refutation of atheism’s denial of theism’s rejection of the body represented by the “Athiest” tattoo on the non-Jesus figure?

    Or not?

  • Karen

    I like it!
    Way to go “New Humanist”!

  • Charles Black

    Without blasphemy we can’t have freedom of speech.
    Well done Ricky, we need more brave people like you.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IOI77EYTXPNTV4UVKETQSW4XAU pbebwli ccefi

    I just p a i d $21.87 for an i P a d 2-64GB and my boyfriend loves his Panasonîc Lumîx GF 1 Camera that we got for $38.76 there arriving tomorrow by UPS.I will never pay such expensive retail prices in stores again. Especially when I also sold a 40 inch LED TV to my boss for $657 which only cost me $62.81 to buy.
    Here is the website we use to get it all from, http://bit.ly/PennyOrder

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_IOI77EYTXPNTV4UVKETQSW4XAU pbebwli ccefi

    not a photoshop

  • Jonthanj

    Well, let’s notice, after a suitable pause to celebrate Mr. Gervais awesome contraposito stance, that he retains a firm grasp of the microphone itself.

  • Ems

    fag

    • Anonymous

      I agree completely – Rick Gervais IS a Fantastic Atheist Guy!

  • aw

    Who cares?  Atheists have been mocking Christians forever.   Most Christians ignore it. Perhaps if Ricky really wants to challenge religion he can mock Islam – how about posing as Mohammad slicing a Qu’ran with a sword?  What say you, Ricky?

    • JMS

      Muslims tend to be more tolerant of other ideologies than Christians. Perhaps he choose to offend the biggest offenders …

  • Sambricky

    That is awesome. Rolling Stones are a bunch of pussy’s

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5KVANL6U2X4WY7QVUW4E72Z7TQ MamaRea

      “Pussy’s” what? Apostrophe “S” is possessive, “ies” would be the plural in this instance for “pussy”.   As in “Some atheists seem willing to applaud old, tired images that the so-called pussies at RS have declined to use, although images like this have been part of atheist’s agenda for decades.”

      I will agree, though: free speech is awesome!

      • JMS

        I agree with you on your usage sentiment but reject the idea that atheists have an agenda. If anything their agenda is to die one day. They don’t possess an ultimate plan to live forever or claim to know that one exists. Leave agendas to the politicians and religious, atheists just want to live and then die — if this is an agenda then we should worry about all non-human animals and their agendas. 

        • SJH

          If you have no agenda why participate in a discussion? The purpose of a discussion is to communicate an agenda and attempt to come into a clearer understanding of reality.
          If you just want to live then die, no one is stopping you. Why then feel the need to make an attempt to offend?
          There is a definite agenda here though I think not even Gervais fully understands what it is. I would guess, though I do not know, that it has to do with:

          Money
          Notoriety
          Fundamentalism
          Atheist religiosity
          Frustration/Anger
          etc…..

          Hopefully he has more benevolent reasons than these but…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5KVANL6U2X4WY7QVUW4E72Z7TQ MamaRea

    Sorry to disappoint, I’m a Christian and I find this neither offensive nor blasphemous. This isn’t ground breaking, it isn’t original, it isn’t art. It’s been pretty much open season on Christianity and Judaism for decades by people using shock value to cover lack of talent or originality, or just to get a rise.  Some very conservative Christians may be offended by this, but this is just one more easy, cheap shot by a media figure. Can’t imagine that Gervais or the New Humanist or the next oh-so-bold atheist will take on Islam with an artsy blasphemous pose depicting Mohammed. Or would THAT be intolerant?

  • Anonymous

    I wouldn’t think that most Christians would be offended by this.  Only the ones that are looking to be offended to push themselves into the media for attention and need the press.

    With shows like Family Guy that mock Jesus often on so many levels, offending the public seems to fall on deaf ears.I think it’s a clever photo.

  • JoJo

    I’m an atheist and I find this offensive. Why is it that outspoken atheists feel it necessary to try and denigrate christianity and those that do believe in god?  When I look at this picture all I can see is a tiny man acting like a child that because he doesnt believe or like what others are doing he chooses to make fun of it and abuse the beliefs of others.
    While I cant understand the need to believe in some unseen being that is supposed to guide and direct the lives of us puny mortals, a lot of people have been helped directly or indirectly by those that do have faith. This type of childish temper tantrum behavior does nothing to help atheists that simply want to be able to live a life in which we dont have to think about how to answer the question of “do you believe in god” for fear of whether or not we could alienate friends, co-workers or people in hearing distance because of the negative conotations that are always associated with atheism, due to this type of stuff.

    • jms

      “You have the right to be offended, and I have the right to offend you. But no one has the right to never be offended”

    • SJH

      I agree. He is doing more harm for atheism than good. He is perpetuating the idea that Atheism is a cause for harm and selfishness. How can being offensive and insulting the other belief system possibly benefit his cause? It polarizes and divides. It does not bring about peace or lead to understanding.

  • http://www.frommormontoatheist.blogspot.com Leia

    Love it! 

    I can relate to it. I totally thought my family would crucify me when I told them I had left the family religion and went back to my default ‘atheist’ status. That may not be what Ricky was going for, but it does seem like nowadays, if anyone would be crucified in society, it would be a vocal atheist.

    He lost his cuddly-ness, but to each their own!

  • The_Holy_Cunt_of_Mary

    BUURRRRP!!


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