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Thread: Comedian Wars

  1. #1
    Senior Member kuranes's Avatar
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    Default Comedian Wars

    So I was watching Comedy Central the other night and was pleasantly surprised to see some new comedians ( new to me ) who were actually funny. I've been kinda disappointed in what I've been seeing ( with little exceptions here and there like Jim Gaffigan, who is not so new anyway ) when I check out new voices for years now.

    The guy that was most popular ( he even had bodyguards, shit ! ) was this Dane Cook, guy. A crowd as big as a turnout for a prizefight or a fairly big name rock act had turned out to see him. I wondered what the fuss was about. He was a good mime, I'll give him that. He did a great job of imitating the postures/stances of men and women while they are evaluating something. In fact ,that seemed to be the focus of his act, the whole "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus" kinda thing. He also looked a little bit like an athletic Dennis Quaid, and kept running around the stage like he thought he was a rock star. He wasn't UNfunny, but he wasn't a naturally funny either, IMHO, like Jonathan winters.

    This guy Daniel Tosh was funnier than Dane, I thought, although of the mostly vitriolic vein.

    Daniel Tosh -
    YouTube - Daniel Tosh

    I probably got the biggest laughs that night from Bill Burr, though. He was acidic also, but a bit more cerebral with his political incorrectness.
    YouTube - Bill Burr on Letterman - June 2007

    I wonder if that's what humor boils down to today, is saying things that are politically incorrect. I suppose there are some comedians that still get to people in a different way, but that almost seems "old school" now. You don't see so many Martin Short types and ( should I include him ? ) Dana Carvey's nowadays. Some people would consider the active or most crucial part of their act to be "impressions" versus humor anyway.

    I was going to add a multiple choice poll to this, but I honestly don't know who all the leading lights are nowadays. Maybe some of you can add some, and mention why you think they're funny. We can create a delayed action poll, maybe.

    So one question you can focus on if you respond to this thread is "does good humor require some acidity? Do you have to be politically incorrect to be funny most of the time ?" Somebody like Jay Leno isn't really "funny", IMHO, but rather "clever" ( or his writers are, anyway ) and neither is Conan O'Brien.

    So is Dave Chapelle funnier than Chris Rock ? Why ? Is he more politically incorrect ? Take more chances that way ?
    YouTube - Dave Chapelle -- Killing Them Softly
    What do you think ?

    Edit - I looked these guys up on Youtube to show some examples of their stuff and I chuckled to see that they were mostly using the same jokes that I saw that night. Here I was thinking they were coming up with new material like that every time they appeared somewhere. You'll probably chuckle yourself to see me refer to Bill as "cerebral", but....I'm comparing him to Daniel Tosh, remember.

    Who are "the new comedians" to you ?
    "The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them that they are being attacked and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism, and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."
    Reichsfuhrer Herman Goering at the Nuremburg trials.

  2. #2

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    I think most popular culture looks for some "edge" of some sort. Whether it is political incorrectness, amazing looks, sexual exhibitionism, or perhaps general oddness.

    As for comedians that don't do politically incorrect things... there is Tony Shalhoub (Adrian Monk), Ray Romano, Tina Fey, the Friend's cast, and others.

    I like Tony Shalhoub and Tina Fey. But rather "meh" about the others.

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    It's always something... PuddleRiver's Avatar
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    I don't really know the 'new' comedians. The ones I have heard, I don't find all that funny. I guess that's why I never learn their names. Oh well.
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    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    I agree with ygolo's direction concerning "edge".

    I think the best comedians surf domestic/international policy for trends that are important to people inside their target demographic.

    One of the primary reasons George Carlin experienced so much popularity early on was because it became cosmopolitan, post-Suburbia, to deride unpopular sociopolitical behavior. Oh - and The Draft. The Draft galvanized a generation of middle-class white kids. These same white kids created a forum for cultural critique in which certain figures offered a banner under which to spearhead flower-power mentality, while dually lampooning the domestic policies that could send them abroad.

    The best comedians are visionaries. From unpredictable cultural patterns, they are able to cross-stitch incisive analysis. If properly accented, their countermovement can initiate broad social change.

    Among other things, humor is an instrument of dissent.

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    Louis C.K. is the best. Chappelle is really, really good. Doug Stanhope is pretty badass. They aren't alone.

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    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    What about those chaps do you most enjoy, Jack Flak?

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    Boring old fossil Night's Avatar
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    I guessed as much.

    For me, Chappelle presents a commentary on anti-P.C. liberal mentality. Engineered "pop" beliefs intended to pardon historical atrocity only serve to sidevent the issue under meaningless lexicon/slang. Racial correctness seems to be Chappelle's antagonist.

    Chappelle presents his subject matter in a way that displays contemporary racism as thriving and institutional, while regaling the audience with his wit. To this end, he is able to demonstrate an intuitive understanding of his subject matter in a way that appeals to many who might not otherwise have as strong an observation for present racial disharmony.

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    Pardon my French, but that's ridamn diculous. I suppose people who don't know their way around a joke might try to inject a more meaningful intent, but any political leaning in the best comics is co-incidental. Carlin and Hicks are not among the best at pure humor. They're half comedians and half commentators on society.

  10. #10
    Emerging Tallulah's Avatar
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    Here's another recent-ish discussion on comedians: http://www.typologycentral.com/forum...te-comedy.html

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