Ricky Gervais has addressed the jokes that landed him in trouble after last year's Golden Globes as part of a column he has written for the new issue of Entertainment Weekly.
Gervais has been asked back as the Globes host and he'll return to face many of the people who were offended by his gags next week - but he insists those who attacked him for his mean-spirited wisecracks should take a moment to consider why they were so appalled.
Before addressing the individual jokes, he writes, "The simple fact is, offense is taken, not given. It's up to you if you're offended or not. And remember, just because you're offended, it doesn't mean you're right."
The British comic admits he loves "exploring taboos" and likes to take an audience to "places it hasn't gone before," suggesting his performance at this year's Golden Globes will be just as sharp-witted as it was a year ago.
Gervais then breaks down four jokes from the 2011 prizegiving, particularly ones about Hugh Hefner's then-upcoming marriage and the "Sex & The City" cast that prompted many to call the funnyman ageist.
He writes, "(I said) 'Congratulations to Hugh Hefner, who's getting married at the age of 84 to 24-year-old beauty Crystal Harris. When she was asked why she was marrying him she said, 'Because he lied about his age. He told me he was 94.' Ageist? I don't think so. I was suggesting that maybe the romance was based on something other than love..."
And on comments Kim Cattrall made after Gervais joked about the age of the "Sex & The City" stars, suggesting the posters for the movie sequel were heavily "airbrushed", the comedian writes, "Kim Cattrall believed this to be ageist. But she's wrong. It's the opposite. Why airbrush a poster of middle-aged women to make them look 25...? The joke is about bowing to societal pressure to appeal to shallow audiences."
In the column, Gervais also addresses jokes he made at the expense of Robert Downey, Jr. and celebrity Scientologists.