Boris fails IQ test

Making light of 'inappropriate' situations can often be frowned upon – but now, a study has revealed those who enjoy the darker side of humour could very well be more intelligent.

Led by Ulrike Willinger at the Medical University of Vienna, the journal Cognitive Process recently surveyed a mixture of 156 men and women of different backgrounds and ages. They concluded that those with a dark sense of humour have higher IQs.

Participants were given a verbal and non-verbal IQ test and were asked general questions about their mood and aggression levels.

Once the tests were over, researchers asked the group to evaluate a variety of satirical cartoons taken from The Black Book by German cartoonist Uli Stein. They were required to rate their enjoyment of the 12 bleak scenarios.

One of the cartoons was said to include two people at a morgue, with a physician lifting a body sheet. A woman says: "Sure, that's my husband – anyway, which washing powder did you use to get that so white?" Blimey.

The British Psychological Society Research Digest blog found that the study revealed three types of groups. Those with the 'sicker' senses of humour scored the highest in the tests and were better educated. They also scored low for aggression.

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Those who didn't find the cartoons at all entertaining scored lower on their IQ tests with higher aggression levels. Those who showed average comprehension of the scenes scored average test results.

The research report read: "The most surprising result is that subjects who show the highest values with respect to black humour preference and comprehension show high values with respect to intelligence, have higher education levels and show lowest values regarding mood disturbance and aggression."

Turns out we don't need tests to see how smart a person is. Just tell a string of sick jokes and see who laughs.

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