Tommy Cooper Jokes - Cooperisms

Tommy Cooper Jokes and CooperismsTommy Cooper Jokes - Comic genius at one line jokes

Here are a selection of jokes from that comic genius, Tommy Cooper.  What we liked about Tommy Cooper was his original style of humour.  Dale Carnegie once said that it was easier to earn a million dollars than create a new phrase.  Well in Tommy Cooper's case he did it - 'Just like that'.

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Tommy Cooper Jokes - One liners (Cooperisms)

Tommy Cooper was more than a catch phrase, he had an original approach.  Biographers say that in his earliest days, Tommy Cooper was so nervous that he made unintentional mistakes, he soon saw that if he could recreate these accidents then he would have people rolling in the aisles. 

In fact Tommy's earliest trick was with a milk bottle.  During the course of the trick he was supposed to turn it up-side-down, but when he did the trick, the milk came pouring out along with the audiences laughter.  That got Tommy Cooper thinking, I can get applause through making tricks go wrong - deliberately. 'Always leave them laughing'.  To get the most from these classic one liners, I suggest that you get into state, imagine that fez hat. 'Just like that'.

  • Went to the paper shop - it had blown away.Tommy Cooper One-liners
  • I went to buy some camouflage trousers the other day but I couldn't find any.
  • I bought some HP sauce the other day. It's costing me 6p a month for the next 2 years.
  • Last night I dreamed I ate a ten-pound marshmallow, and when I woke up the pillow was gone.
  • Police arrested two kids yesterday, one was drinking battery acid, the other was eating fireworks.  They charged one and let the other one off.
  • A woman told her doctor, 'I've got a bad back. 'The doctor said, 'It's old age.'  The woman said, 'I want a second opinion. 'The doctor says, 'OK. you're ugly as well.'
  • A man walked into the doctor's, The doctor said 'I haven't seen you in a long time'
    The man replied, 'I know I've been ill'.
  • A man walked into the doctor's, he said 'I've hurt my arm in several places'.
    The doctor said 'well don't go there any more'.
  • I'm on a whiskey diet. I've lost three days already.
  • Slept like a log last night ........ woke up in the fireplace.
  • Went to the corner shop - bought 4 corners.
  • Two blondes walked into a building. You'd have thought one would have seen it.
  • I went to the doctors the other day and I said, 'have you got anything for wind?'
    So he gave me a kite.
  • I cleaned the attic with the wife the other day.
    Now I can't get the cobwebs
    out of her hair.
  • I went to the Doctors the other day, and he said, 'Go to Bournemouth, it's great for 'flu.
    So I went, and I got it.'
  • See more funny doctor jokes Tommy Cooper Jokes

More Cooperisms Sent in by Readers

'I became a member of The Secret Seven. It's so secret, I don't even know who the other six are... '
Sent by Johan van Elk

I went to the doctors with a jelly stuck in one ear and custard in the other. The doctor asked, 'what seems to be the problem?' I said 'you have to speak up, I'm a trifle deaf.'
Sent by Julian Cheese

Two fish in a tank, one says to the other - you drive I'll man the guns.

A guy walks into a pub with a lump of asphalt on his shoulder.  He says to the barman give us a pint and one for the road.
Sent in by Johnny

At first it shocked us to learn that many 'Tommy Cooper jokes' were actually created by others long after his death.  If you find any of our items that are definitely not originals then please let us know.

See more Tommy Cooper jokes.

Tommy Cooper Jokes - Two liners

A man goes into the doctors. The doctor says, 'Go over to the window and stick your tongue out.' 
Man says, Why?  The doctor says, 'I don't like my neighbours'

Two Aerials meet on a roof - fall in love - get married. 
The ceremony was rubbish but the reception was brilliant.

Now, most dentist's chairs go up and down, don't they?  The one I was in went back and forwards. I thought 'This is unusual' .
And the dentist said to me, 'Mr Cooper, get out of the filing cabinet.'

'Doc, I can't stop singing the green green grass of home.
'That sounds like Tom Jones syndrome'.

'Is it common?'
'It's not unusual.'

Tommy Cooper Jokes With Garry Kasparov

So I was having dinner with Garry Kasporov and there was a check tablecloth.
It took him two hours to pass me the salt.

He said "You remind me of a pepper-pot", I said "I'll take that as a condiment".

One year I got a bike for my birthday. So I went peddling off down the road and knocked an old lady down.

'Can't you ring your bell?' She said. 'I can ring my bell,' I said 'But I can't ride my bike'

I got home from work and the wife said - I'm very sorry dear, but the cat's eaten your dinner'.

I said 'Don't worry - I'll get you a new cat'.


'I was standing at a party the other night and across the room was an attractive woman.  I looked at her and cocked my eye.  She looked at me and cocked her eye back.  And there we stood, cock-eyed.
(Graham's favorite Tommy Cooper Joke)

Extra Tommy Cooper Jokes Kindly Supplied by Ian Stevens

  • I went into a butchers and I said, 'I'll have a pound of sausages. 'He said, 'I'm very sorry, sir, we only serve kilos in here. 'I said, 'Okay then I'll have a pound of kilos.'
  • So I said to the doctor. 'People keep taking the Mickey out of me because I keep thinking I'm a cricket ball. 'The doctor said 'Howzat?' I said, 'don't you start'.
  • So I knocked on the door at this bed & Breakfast and a lady stuck her head out of the window and said: 'What do you want', I said, 'I want to stay here'.  She said, 'Well stay there' and shut the window.
  • 'I got up just like that, well it could of been like that, but, no it was like that.... anyway I leapt up, and I opened the door in my pyjamas, It's a funny place to have a door I know'.

Tommy Cooper - Called to the Bar

"Man walked into a bar. He went 'Ouch'. It was an iron bar."

"Man went into a bar, he only had one arm. Guy sitting next to him said 'Hey, you've got your sleeve in my drink', man replied, 'There's no (h)arm in it' "


Classic Tommy Cooper JokesTommy Cooper - cooperisms

Tommy Cooper was a comedian's comedian.  The main reason was because he broke every rule in the book.  Other comedians would like to have tried what Tommy did, but only he could attempt the outrageous and not only get away with it but also turn the outrageous into his signature tune.  Jokes going deliberately wrong became his trade mark, but there are other subtler things Tommy Cooper did that lesser comedians cannot, for example, repeating a joke once he got the first a laugh.  See next joke, also see the last joke.

'I had a meal last night.  I ordered everything in French, surprised everybody.  It was a Chinese restaurant.  I said to this Chinese waiter, 'Look, this chicken I got here is cold. 'He said, 'It should be, it's been dead two weeks.'

I said, 'Not only that. 'I said, I said... I said it twice, I said, 'He's got one leg shorter than the other. 'He said, 'What do you wanna do with it, eat it or dance with it?'

I said, 'Forget the chicken, give me a lobster, and he brought me this lobster. I said just a minute, he's only got one claw. 'He said 'Well he's been in a fight. 'I said, 'Well give me the winner.'

A man takes his Rottweiler to the vet.  'My dog's cross-eyed, is there anything you can do for him? 'Well, 'says the vet, 'let's have a look at him' so he picks the dog up and examines his eyes, then checks his teeth.

Finally, he says ' I'm going to have to put him down.  'What? Because he's cross-eyed?'  No, because he's really heavy'

A man goes to the Psychiatrists and the Psychiatrist says: 'What's the problem' The man says, 'I think I'm becoming a kleptomaniac. 'The Psychiatrist says, 'Here take these tablets and if you're no better in a week' ..... 'Bring me a colour TV'.

"I woke up the other night. I had one foot up here like this (pushing the flat of the hand under his chin), and the other up there like that; not like that (rotating his hand and back again), like that.

Then I thought to myself; My feet are killing me".  [Thanks to Steven Bryant]


I backed horse last week at ten to one. 
It came in at quarter past four.  [Sent by Adrian Cole]

I went to the doctors. He said 'I'd like you to lie on the couch'.  I said 'What for?'  He said 'I'd like to sweep the floor'

How do you get out of prison?
Rub your hands together until they're sore, then use the saw to chop through the bars...

Then, shout until you're hoarse, mount up and ride away!  [Thanks to Aleyn D. Lester]

I was clearing out the loft and I found an old violin and a painting. I took them to an expert and he said what you have there is a stradivarius and a rembrandt. Unfortunately stradivarius couldn't paint and Rembrandt couldn't make very good violins. [Kelvin Vaughan]

I was walking down the street the other day when I saw a guy laying out on the road.  Like that, I say to the guy, "have an accident?" he says "no thanks, just had one"  [Mike Perrott]

'Went to the doctors - he said "You've got four minutes to live" I said "Is there anything you can give me?" He said "A boiled egg?"' [Kindly sent in by Grahame Platt.]Tommy Cooper Joke Tie

Man walks into a tie shop. The assistant says  'yes sir, what can I help you with?' The man say's, 'I want to return this tie'. The assistant says, 'yes sir, and what's wrong with it sir?', The man says  'its too tight, much too tight'.

Got a new car the other day, pushed the horn it went woof woof, it was a Rover.   [Two Tommy Cooper jokes kindly sent in by S. Spieirs.]

As with one or two of the other Cooperisms featured on this page, we are not sure if Tommy ever said this, or whether it has just become part of his folklore.

See another collection of Tommy Cooper's one liners.

Readers Contribute Tommy Cooper Material

The following Tommy Cooper joke was kindly sent in by Tom Fairnie.

"I woke up the other night. I had one foot up here like this (pushing the flat of the hand under his chin), and the other up there like that; not like that (rotating his hand and back again), like that. And I thought to myself; My feet are killing me".

I went to see my neighbour and knocked on their door.  The lady of the house answered, I thought she looked a bit odd.  I asked her if her husband was in. 'Johnny passed away this morning I'm afraid' she said.

'Oh dear, that's awful' I said 'What on earth happened?'

'Well he just told me that he felt a little poorly and took to his bed and that was it'

I didn't know what to say. I asked if she was with him at the end. 'Yes. I was' she sobbed. I enquired if he managed any last words. 'Well, yes a few' she said.

So I asked her, 'He didn't say anything about a tin of red paint did he?'

Monkey and an Hyena, best of mates were walking through the jungle when the Hyena was attacked by a vicious Lion. The Monkey escaped up a nearby tree and watched his friend the Hyena being mauled and ripped to bits.

 Once the fight was over the Hyena was only just alive and turned to the Monkey and said. "Why didn't you come and help me?" And the Monkey replied, "The way you were laughing I thought you were winning so I didn't bother."

Kindly sent in by Dave Young.  Please send us your favourite Tommy Cooper story.


Tommy Cooper the Practical Joker

Tommy Cooper had an engagement at Allinson's night club in Liverpool.  As usual it was sold out and a good time was had by all.  On the last night, after the show, Tommy called all the night club staff back stage and thanked them for his help.   He shook each by the hand and pressed an envelope into their hands and said : 'Have a good drink on me' .  Later when they opened the envelop, inside was not a large denomination note, but a tea bag!   That's Tommy Cooper for you.

Tommy Cooper At the Royal Command Performance

Each year it was the custom for the very best performers to appear at the Royal Command Performance.  At the end of the show the very best of the best were introduced to the Queen.

'Did you think I was funny?', Tommy Cooper asked the Queen.
'Yes, very funny Tommy', replied the Queen.

'Did your Mother think I was funny?', Tommy asked.
'Yes, she laughed non-stop', said the Queen

'Would you mind if I ask a personal question?', Tommy asked.
'No, you can ask, but I am not be able to answer', the Queen Replied

'Who are you supporting in the Cup Final?', asked Tommy.
'Neither, I am impartial' , said the Queen.'

'In that case, ... ' said Tommy, '....do you mind if I have your Cup Final Tickets?'

Tommy Cooper Jokes From His Royal Variety Command Performance

I came here to watch the show last year.  I asked at the box office 'How much are the tickets for the seats?

 They told me £25.  I said 'That's too much'. Then I asked, 'How much for a programme?'

They told me £5. 'OK,' so I said, 'Give me a programme and I'll sit on that!'

... And later on at the same performance?

I bought myself a shockproof, dustproof, waterproof watch the other day.
It caught fire.

Reminiscences of Tommy Cooper on stage kindly sent in by Adrian Feather.

Tim Vine

Tim Vine has written a great deal of his own material which is often confused with Cooperisms.  In fact, Tim is a fine stand-up comedian in his own right, and in 1995 he won the Perrier Award for Best Newcomer at the Edinburgh Festival.  Tim's career has blossomed and British readers may have seen him compère TV shows such as Whittle (Channel 5), Fluke (Channel 4) and Housemates (BBC1).

Unfortunately, someone ripped-off Tim's gags, put them in an infamous email and credited the material to Tommy Cooper.  Here is a collection of jokes that we should attribute to Tim Vine.

  • "He said 'I'm going to chop off the bottom of one of your trouser legs and put it in a library'.  I thought 'That's a turn-up for the books.'"
  • "And the back of his anorak was leaping up and down, and people were chucking money to him. I said 'Do you earn a living doing that?' He said 'Yes, this is my livelihood.'
  • "So I was getting into my car, and this bloke says to me "Can you give me a lift?" I said "Sure, you look great, the world's your oyster, go for it.'"
  • "You know, somebody actually complimented me on my driving today. They left a little note on the windscreen, it said 'Parking Fine.' So that was nice."
  • "So I went down my local ice-cream shop, and said 'I want to buy an ice-cream'. He said Hundreds & thousands?' I said 'We'll start with one.' He said 'Knickerbocker glory?' I said 'I do get a certain amount of freedom in these trousers, yes.'
  • I went to Millets and said 'I want to buy a tent.' He said 'To camp?', I said [butchly] 'Sorry, I want to buy a tent.' I said 'I also want to buy a caravan.' He said 'Camper?' I said [campily] 'Make your mind up.'
  • So I went to the dentist. He said "Say Aaah." I said "Why?" He said "My dog's died.'"
  • "Now, most dentist's chairs go up and down, don't they? The one I was in went back and forwards. I thought 'This is unusual'. And the dentist said to me 'Mr Vine, get out of the filing cabinet.'"
  • "So I got home, and the phone was ringing. I picked it up, and said 'Who's speaking please?' And a voice said 'You are.'"
  • "So I rang up my local swimming baths. I said 'Is that the local swimming baths?' He said 'It depends where you're calling from.'"
  • "So I rang up a local building firm, I said 'I want a skip outside my house.' He said 'I'm not stopping you.'
  • "Apparently, 1 in 5 people in the world are Chinese. And there are 5 people in my family, so it must be one of them. It's either my mum or my dad. Or my older brother Colin. Or my younger brother Ho-Chan-Chu. But I think it's Colin."
  • "So I was in my car, and I was driving along, and my boss rang up, and he said 'You've been promoted.' And I swerved. And then he rang up a second time and said "You've been promoted again.' And I swerved again. He rang up a third time and said 'You're managing director.' And I went into a tree. And a policeman came up and said 'What happened to you?' And I said 'I careered off the road.'

Cooperisms - Imitations

Tommy himself would have been flattered by imitations.  However, Will and Guy have been naive, and we thank readers for pointing out that since his sad death, there has been an industry in imitating 'Cooperisms'.

More 'Imitation' Cooperism
I went to buy a ticket on the train to go to France.

The agent said, 'Eurostar?'
I said, 'Well, I've been on the telly; but I'm no Dean Martin.'

Ron pointed out that the history of Eurostar rail service did not start until 1986, which was two years after Tommy's death in 1984, and in fact, the Eurostar was not operational until 1994.

To steal a line from Groucho Marx - 'Close but no cigar'.

A mate of mine recently admitted to being addicted to brake fluid.

When I quizzed him on it he reckoned he could stop any time.....

See more Tommy Cooper impersonations.

Tommy Cooper in Action

Tommy Cooper: 'This is the moment that you have all been waiting for'
Audience: 'Applause'

Tommy Cooper 'Goodnight'!   (Sorry about lack of sound, click here for sound version)

See the full Tommy Cooper Video Clip - with Sound

Tommy Cooper's Statue Tommy Cooper Jokes - Comic genius at one line jokes

On February 23rd 2008 a new statue was unveiled to Tommy Cooper in Caerphilly, South Wales.  This event is full of personal coincidences.  My wife was born, and lived, a stone's throw from Tommy's statue.  The new statue captures Tommy Cooper in a classic pose with his fez.

My personal co-incidences continue; the statue was unveiled by Sir Anthony Hopkins who went to the same school as me (although we were at Cowbridge Grammar school in different eras).  In 2007 Sir Anthony and my paths crossed when we each made an independent trip to visit the old school tuck shop. 

One last co-incidence, while Sir Anthony is the Patron of the Tommy Cooper Society, the secretary and force behind the society is Tudor Jones, who I met at my parents' house. 

Tudor says that the main objective is to emphasise the connection between Tommy Cooper and Caerphilly.  Tommy's daughter Vicky picks up this theme when recalls how proud her father was of his Welsh roots. 

The society has commissioned James Done to sculpt the 9ft statue and when that was finished, it took a further two months to be cast in bronze.   Whereupon, Sir Anthony Hopkins flew into Caerphilly and performed the unveiling ceremony with Tommy Cooper's catch phrase:

"Before I begin I just want to say this - 'this'."


Tommy Cooper - A Brief Biography

Tommy was born in Caerphilly, Wales on 19th of March 1921.  Although he was proud of being Welsh, his family moved to the South Coast of England when he was but a baby, hence he never developed a Welsh accent.  Was his comic genius nature, or nurture?  Interestingly his father was a very funny man, and his mother had a determined streak that manifested in Tommy as an obsessive desire to perfect his act.  The man himself one said on the subject: 'Acting is in my blood'....'A straight actor bit me once'.

Nurture, or opportunity, came in the unlikely form of the British army.  It's true to say he had an undistinguished military career, but it was here that discovered that this trade mark fez could get a laugh.  While he did not have a 'captive audience', 1,000 troops starved of entertainment was probably the next best thing to discover what bungled magic worked, and what went down like a lead balloon.

Tommy Cooper in the PlankOnly the very greatest comics are idolized by their fellow show-biz performers, and Tommy Cooper was one of that select band.  When asked to analyse Tommy and his act, they say it's his ability to have a rapport with himself that makes him stand out as a great comedian.  Once alerted to this internal dialog of talking to himself as he performs, you can see what they mean.

Once I realized that magic was his hobby, as well as a big part of his stage act, I began to imagine all the hours of practice to make a bungled magic trick appear an accident.  While Tommy Cooper flirted with films such at 'The Plank' 1967, and starred in numerous T.V. programs, his peers in show business unanimously say that his live act saw Tommy at his best.

Tommy Cooper played Las Vegas in the late 1960's; they loved his crazy conjuring act, but could not understand his accent and delivery.  As for Tommy, he craved Variety Shows where he could play on his size and awkwardness, and work a live audience to get their applause.  So he quickly returned to Britain.

Sadly, Tommy Cooper died during a TV show on the 15th of April 1984 in London. 'Always leave them laughing'.

Perhaps his most lasting claim to fame is inventing the word 'Cooperism' to describe a funny, almost silly joke.


Footnote: Please write to Will and Guy if you have a good Tommy Cooper joke, or a Cooperism.

For example, Ian Greenaway sent in:
"Bought a Jaguar for wife last week ......ripped her to bits"

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