Writing comedic material is a challenging profession. It’s not always easy to tell what’s hilarious and what’s not, even if you’re the director of a comedy show. Even though comedy is largely a matter of personal taste, there are certain approaches that can be helpful whether you’re trying to write, direct, or even play in a comedy. Then, what exactly is comedy? The following will provide our definition of comedy, some instances of different types of humour, and an overview of key comedic factors.
What exactly is the meaning of comedy?
E.B. White once observed that “humor can be dissected as easily as a frog can; nevertheless, the animal dies in the process, and the contents are discouraging to anyone other than the completely scientific mind.” We are going to make an effort to complete the task regardless.
At the very least, let’s define what we already know.
What exactly is comedy?
The term “comedy” refers to any work that is created with the intention of eliciting laughter and amusement, whether it be in a stage performance, a film, a television show, a stand-up routine, or any other kind of entertainment. It originates from the literary meaning of comedy, which refers to a medieval story or narrative with a humorous character that prevails over unfavorable circumstances, hence creating comic effects. This term may be traced all the way back to the Ancient Greeks. The atmosphere is humorous and caustic, and the protagonist is always successful in the end.
In the entertainment business, the term “comedy genre” refers to a classification that encompasses movies and television shows that are intended to elicit laughter and have happy conclusions. People chuckle as a result of comedies, in the end. But what is it about comedy that has such a transformative effect? Despite the fact that everyone has their own unique sense of humor, there are a few prerequisites for successful comedy.
THE VARIETIES OF COMEDY
- Physical humor, often known as slapstick (e.g., Charlie Chaplin or a pie in the face)
- To parody anything is to purposely imitate or criticize something else.
- A parody that is humorous rather than mocking, often known as a “spoof.”
- Satire is the practice of making light of serious issues in politics or society.
- Irony occurs when something unexpected occurs in contrast to what was anticipated.
- Sarcasm – contemptuous response, sometimes ironic
- The term “farce” refers to comedies that grossly exaggerate the characters and situations.
- Dark comedy is a type of comedy in which humor is used to touch on serious issues.
- Surrealism is characterized by the use of abstract settings and juxtapositions, as well as humor that makes no sense.
WHAT MAKES SOMETHING FUNNY?
The Farrelly Brothers’ first directing effort, the comedy film Dumb and Dumber, was a smashing success.
That’s very remarkable for directors who are just starting out and making their very first movie. However, in all honesty, they were just aware of what constituted humor and what did not.
“You can’t triple stamp a double stamp!”
Despite the fact that humor is entirely personal, there are a few tried-and-true methods that can be of use.
Timing is of the utmost importance. The manner in which a comedian delivers the punch line or the manner in which actors deliver their lines can have an effect on the reaction of the audience. The addition of even a brief pause may do wonders for a joke. The ability to accurately time events first builds anticipation and then delivers.
Pay close attention to the silence that occurs in this video clip before Derek gives his response. If there wasn’t a gap in between each line, or if the pause was twice as long, the humor would be diminished.
“What is this, exactly? A gathering place for ants?!”
What was anticipated to take place actually took place. We are prepared for it. It is still quite humorous. It appears that Austin Powers is about to drink some coffee, but we all know that it’s not actually coffee. We anticipate that he will consume the human waste, and sure enough, he does so. There is a dark side to comedy as well. But the methods are applicable in exactly the same way.
On the other hand, great comedy has the ability to surprise us and take us by surprise. This is especially hilarious where there is no discernible pattern to the events that take place.
Misunderstandings are inevitable in life, and most of the time, we can only laugh about them after the fact.
But when we’re watching a movie or television show, it’s not happening to us; therefore, when we see two people making their lives so much more difficult for each other, we can’t help but chuckle. There are aspects of it to which we can both connect, but primarily it’s just humorous.
Observe how the film Shaun of the Dead plays with the idea of misunderstanding in this particular sequence. We anticipate that Shaun and Ed will identify the intruder for who and what she is (a zombie). Therefore, their misunderstanding is brilliant and hilarious in equal measure.
“Oh, my God. How inebriated is she!”
MAKE FUN OF HISTORY AND TRAVESTY
These phrases were taken from various works of comic literature. However, you’ve probably seen them in a number of other movies and shows. Something that is so little but is blown out of proportion, as if it were the most significant thing in the world, is referred to as a mock epic.
On the other hand, travesty has the effect of diminishing the significance of more significant issues.
What’s double entendre? This happens when one of your characters says something that might be interpreted in more than one way. These are almost always veiled sexual references or insinuations. However, keep in mind that they have the potential to become corny if they are utilized excessively. You have the potential to truly engage the audience and make them laugh if you manage it correctly.
THE DEFECTIVE PLANNING
When a character comes up with the stupidest plan in the world, but the character is the only one who doesn’t realize how stupid their plan is, this is an example of a defective plan.
The movie “Weekend at Bernie’s” immediately springs to mind. Despite the fact that I suppose it was successful for a short while there (which is equally hilarious).
There are, of course, a huge number of different approaches that may be taken, and frequently these approaches are combined with one another; having said that, humor is quite personal. I don’t think it’s a bad thing that comedy can’t be broken down into its component parts or easily defined. What really matters at the end of the day is that people are having a good time and laughing. Regardless of the nature of it.
WHY DO PEOPLE LIKE COMEDY?
First and foremost, the majority of people like a good laugh. People are happier after watching comedies. But comedy also has the ability to reveal uncomfortable realities in a way that makes them easier to laugh at.
It can be quite funny when someone makes fun of something that we can relate to or that we have personally experienced if they do it in a humorous way. It’s not always clear to us why things work the way they do, but sometimes it helps to look at them in a different light. It has nearly a curative effect.
Let’s have a look at some comedic examples now that you understand the definition of the term. Check out our subsequent post where we discuss some of the top comedies that have been made throughout the years.