That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore

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"That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore" is a song by British alternative rock band The Smiths. It appears on the album Meat Is Murder, the sole track from the album to be released as a UK promotional single. The song was composed by guitarist Johnny Marr and singer Morrissey.The track has been cited by Marr as one of his favourites of The Smiths'.Lyrics and musicThe song's narrative alludes to mockery of the lonely or suicidal, whom the narrator identifies with and champions in an exchange in a parked car. Disparity between literal and figurative meanings in some of the lyrics discourage a precise reading of the song. A sexual liaison "on cold leather seats" has been said to be sketchily implied. (Morrissey has been quoted as finding leather car seats "highly erotic".) The lyric "I have seen this happen in the lives of other people and now it is happening in ours" is a quote from the movie Alice Adams.The song's waltz-time related signature and Marr's rhythm guitar, with strident chord changes (as exemplified by the song's opening figure), lend the music a sweeping emotive feel. The song's structure is notable for its uncommon ABCBC form. (Musically, the first verse is never repeated.)ReceptionFor many critics the song is the focal point of Meat Is Murder. The music has been described as "a monolithic ballad of tender yet imposing grace; a score of unreserved, raw beauty that Morrissey dutifully complemented" and the song's coda as containing "one of the most heart-rending vocal passages Morrissey has ever recorded."

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