Friday, July 08, 2005

Comedy Sucks and I Hate It

Sigh. Another really negative look at TV comedy from the New York Times.

Honestly, I'm starting to get a little confused, because I'm definitely not a stoner, but I've laughed out loud, and consistently at both episodes of Stella so far. And, as a contrast, "Mind of Mencia," which she uses as an example of something that is fun to watch, looks awful.

Ms. Heffernan's main thesis is that maybe comedy writers should be looking to start with jokes, but once again, she misinterprets what comedy is about. Actually, scratch that. Comedy is about jokes, for her, it seems. But speaking on behalf of the comedy world, I think we've moved past that.

Laughs come from character, situation, and at their very base, the unexpected. Even "jokes" are based in a suprise of some sort, or something that you don't expect. Or, playing fully into your expectations, but in a way you would never say out loud.

Anyway. New York Times: wrong. Me: right.


Geoffrey said...


One time at a meeting, we were joking about my brother Patrick (Pat-Pat to those in the know), and how funny he is. To illustrate the point, both these numbskulls, at the exact same time because they're the same person, said "Pat-Pat: Bigger And Blacker," a play off of Chris Rock's show of the same name.

The craziest part was that as soon as they started they each knew what the other was going to say and made creepy eye contact the entire time.

Alex said...

I guess it's good to note that the entire time we've had this blog, this is the first time there's been double posting about anything.

I'll delete Stefan's post.

brian said...

I think the appeal of jokes for journalists is that they're a simple metric. Like it's easy to write a story and say..."lots of jokes" and "huge laffs."

More complex comedy is harder to write about-so why not just count jokes?

(Eventually Geoff will devise a comedy statistical system calculating laffs per attempt, number of laffs per 22 minutes, etc. He will tell us all what is funny. And he write a book called Comedyball.)

Jesse said...

This is the same woman that wrote that deeply and profoundly inane story about the death of sketch comedy... based on The Sketch Show and Drew Carey's Green Screen.

It amazes me that this baloney passes for professional criticism.

Anonymous said...

I agree that the article does a poor job in explaining what people should expect from a good comedy.

That said, I still think Stella sucks.