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Ricky Gervais mocks Boris Johnson apology: “I do my job with a can in hand!”

"Didn’t he say he thought it was a business meeting? Didn’t it say to bring a bottle on the invite?"

By Nick Reilly

After Life season 3
Ricky Gervais in After Life season three (Picture: Netflix)

Ricky Gervais has mocked Boris Johnson’s apology for attending a “bring your own booze” party during the height of the first coronavirus lockdown.

The Prime Minister was widely mocked last Wednesday when he told the Commons that the May 2020 event was “technically within the rules” and he believed it had been a “work event”.

Pressure had been mounting on the PM to confirm whether he had been present at the Downing Street drinks party, at a time when social gatherings were banned.

The event took place after the PM’s principal private secretary Martin Reynolds sent an email inviting colleagues to “socially distanced drinks” and told them to “bring your own booze”.

Speaking to Rolling Stone UK hours after the apology, Gervais said that Boris’ apology drew some unexpected parallels with his own job.

“Didn’t he say he thought it was a business meeting? Didn’t it say to bring a bottle on the invite? Ha! That’s a good job, innit?,” said Gervais.

“That’s like my job. I do my job with a can in my hand but I’m a stand-up comedian, I’m not in charge of the country. It’s crazy.”

Boris Johnson stands in front of a podium that reads 'Build Back Better'.
Boris Johnson (Photo: Alamy).

Gervais also bemoaned the treatment of key workers throughout the pandemic, after a line in the final series of After Life saw them hailed as “angels who live among us”.

“I owe everything to the welfare state, I was the fourth kid of an immigrant labourer. We had no money and lived on a council estate. I wouldn’t be where I am if school wasn’t free, if healthcare wasn’t free,” he said.

“But I never felt poor because everything I liked was free. I liked school, I liked learning. I liked nature and hanging out with my friends too, but all those things can’t be enjoyed if you’re not well. That line was a semi-political nod, and I think more and more people throughout the pandemic began to appreciate what’s important. I called my family twice as much as usual and I think you do appreciate these things.

“For me, it’s about mortality too, as you get older I do think life is precious ’cause it’s finite. Every day is a higher percentage of my life than yesterday! That’s not morbid, but I can’t buy time.”

After Life 3 is now streaming on Netflix.