"What do you get if you cross the Queen and Prince Phillip?
"Killed in a tunnel."
Most of his jokes are wordplay - the joke there is actually the double meaning of "cross," he builds an expectation and subverts it - but he teases. He plays with taboos, and goes for the shocker, but his tongue's constantly firmly in his cheek - I'd highly refute that he's malicious. Man waits after all his shows to speak to every single member of the audience who wants to have a chat with him. Logic being - they pay him to just stand around on a stage for an hour and a half, least he can do is thank them.
He's lovely. Being offensive is not what he's about at all - he talks about this on stage. A lot. He plays with taboos because jokes are about surprises, and saying something terrible with enough self-awareness adds that little bit of shock, but the jokes would become uncomfortable if anyone thought he meant any of it. He's more of a joke architect. And half his jokes are pretty clean anyway. Sometimes very clean. "What happens if you spill carpet cleaner?"
It won't be to everyone's taste, I accept. Literally no objection. Hate his material as much as you want. But degree from Cambridge, makes time for the fans, performs for charity... the tax stuff wasn't ace, but he remedied that despite being under no obligation whatsoever to. Which is no reason to rush out and buy his DVDs - some people like that and some people don't - but celebrating his death seems a lot uglier and significantly more sincerely mean-spirited than anything he's ever said on any stage ever.