“Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall into an open sewer and die.”
Renowned and brilliant comedian Hannah Gadsby steps behind the microphone at a popular New York City comedy club. Hannah begins a scathing monologue about how good men don’t exist. The teeming crowd of young people begins to hoot and holler in delight and affirmation. Then; it happens.
I know you’re out there; you’re sick and tired of political correctness stinking up your comics. Like, so sick and tired that you’re not even reading this. You’re off doing something else because you’re fed up with the never-ending guilt-trip perpetuated by the mainstream media. But I know you’re out there.
And if you were reading this, you’d know one thing.
On the first of May, 2018, sometime about a half-hour before noon, a bar appeared underneath every post on the social networking site Facebook.
I had awakened earlier, in a panic attack, and been scrolling my “newsfeed” in a wrongheaded attempt to relieve my state of depressive shock. Believe it or not, sometimes it works. I find pictures of kitties, or baby hedgehogs, or pretty girls with their whatnots hanging out. Maybe an inspiring story or a naughty bit of humor. I feel better, and get on with the tasks of the day.
But this new snitch bar made things way, way worse.
I tell you this as a friend. It won’t be easy for you, but worthwhile things in life seldom are.
Your feelings deserve to be hurt.
No guarantee exists in life that your feelings will be unhurt. No more so than your bones or flesh. In fact; let’s start off with your bones. Remember when you were a little kid, and your bones throbbed in pain all the time? What did thegrownups call that?
Imagine if you will, a world parallel to our own, identical in many ways, disparate in others. Long story short, in this mirror universe, Bands I Useta Like was optioned by a major independent film studio, and made into a hit movie. It combined animation and live action, and because the producers had deep pockets, licensing songs for a decent soundtrack wasn’t a problem.
Whether I allowed the film to be produced at all was contingent upon the quality of the music choices. If they balked at a crucial song, or refused to include it, I would walk off the project. Which I did, and they replaced me on-screen with a real actor. Like I said, the movie was a hit.
The 2-disc soundtrack sold out of stores overnight. Even though it came packed in that shitty double jewel-box, which just winds up broken, on the floor of a car.
I love great sketch comedy, and as demonstrated on this site, I have tremendous nostalgia for the video industry of the 1980s and ’90s. By nature I am protective of those things, out of love. I have little tolerance of exploitation of them.
I believe the modern peak of sketch comedy came with two shows; Mr. Show with Bob & David, and The Kids In The Hall (both on HBO). Since the 1990s, these programs set the gold standard. Inevitably, new sketch comedy shows are compared to them, and they seldom hold up. I don’t think The State gelled until they became Reno 911. Broken Lizard has moments; generally one or two per film. Too many comedy groups nowadays are post-UCB; all manic energy, no focus. That’s fine if the group is performing live for an drunken bar audience. TV is a different matter.
Comedy stinks right now because you forced it to stink. You vilified every experience in life that makes a great comedian. You made the safe, sponsored version of laughter the norm. You’re so afraid to really laugh in front of other people, that you turned comedy from an anti-establishment weapon into a cottony security blanket.
Comedy stinks right now because of you. Because you’re afraid of your true feelings.
You probably don’t even know who this is.
Let’s take, as an example, one of these pusillanimous women that the media holds up as Queens of Comedy. You know the ones, I don’t have to name them. They’re all over glossy magazine covers at the checkout aisles, making “zany” faces to remind you they’re funny.