If you were around in the mid-60s you knew it was truth.
“If I’d said, ‘Television is more popular than Jesus,’ I might have got away with it!” John Lennon lamented as cameras rolled from each of the three major American TV networks. The cheeky remark drew a laugh from the assembled crowd of journalists, but recently Lennon hadn’t been so lucky. It was August 11th, 1966, and he was being called to task for an offhand comment made during an interview nearly five months prior.
Source: Rolling Stone