I greatly enjoyed Rowan Atkinson in the Blackadder series on television, and his Mr. Bean character, rather like the Curate’s egg, was good in parts, but speaking of curates, whatever possessed him to take on the role of the Archbishop of Canterbury? And why the beard? As my late father used to say: “Never trust a man in a beard, he’s got something to hide.” And what’s with the name? I mean, how many self respecting parents would name their infant son after a tree?

The problem with the Archbishop as a comedy role is that he’s getting laughs in all the wrong places, and that’s the kiss of death to all comedians. And talking of the kiss of death, and as a committed Anglican, I look to the Archbishop as a conduit between me and the Almighty, but I have this uneasy feeling that when I get to the pearly gates and mention his name, The Almighty will be totally mystified. And let’s face it, if the Almighty is mystified, what hope for us lesser mortals? Oh dear, I wonder if that’s blasphemous? And if so, will I be led to a place of execution and stoned to death? All very worrying.

It’s been going from bad to worse, this comedy routine, and it will end in tears. It was last Christmas, talk about bad timing, when the venerable Rowan told those of us who were listening that parts of the Nativity story were a figment of the imagination, and in particular, there were no three kings or wise men. Happily, my informant told me to log on to YouTube where I found a sternly worded rebuke from the direct descendent of King Melchior, so that’s put the record straight!

But there’s worse to come. News has reached me from the Royal Courts of Justice that Rowan now enjoins us to embrace Sharon’s Law, and somehow assimilate it into the law of the land. So I ask, in a spirit of enquiry, who’s this Sharon? I knew a Sharon once in my callow youth, and she was certainly a law unto herself, but that’s another story!

I’m confused. As St. Paul wrote: “For now I see through a glass, darkly.” Well frankly, he’s not alone. So I say, let’s leave Sharon to her own devices, Rowan should go back to reprising his best loved comedy roles, and leave the Great Debate to those better qualified to lead us to the Promised Land.

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David is an English barrister, writer, public performer and keynote speaker. His full profile can be found on his website.

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