It’s comedy, seriously. Part 2.

Comedy is truth.

I learned this during an RtI rehearsal as I played a scene with LA.  Marc gave us post-scene notes and said something to the effect of: “One of my teachers told me that one way to make something funny is to take something real, and heighten it.” It’s a simple formula. Simple and genius.

I suppose you can break this theory into two portions: relatability and well… heightening.  Relatability is important because if you don’t relate to your audience, if you don’t strike a chord, if you don’t make something inside them go “Aha!” then your story won’t get through.  No catharsis.  It’s interesting, because despite the fact that Comedic truth can be evoked in one of a million ways, sometimes the mark is missed.

I think, though, that heightening is probably the real tricky part.  Most people know how to be true.  It’s something innate.  The danger, however, lies in attempting to take that truth and make it funny through hyperbole; hyperbole in action, emotion, situation, etc.  But you’ve got to strike a balance. Too much truth, and you’ve shifted into the dramatic.  Too little, and it runs the danger of becoming nonsense.  It becomes unrelatable. I think that the closer you can ride this line between hyperbole and nonsense, the funnier you’ll be.  For most of us ordinary people, though, it’s a sense that must be developed.

Then again, what do I know?  I just typing because I’m scared of thinking right now.

Again, I’ve let my thoughts lead me past the point of “holy fuck it’s late.


Addendum.

Screw you, life.  You’re not gonna make me back down.  Not this year.  I will kick your ass.

Maybe you’ll win a battle here and there.  Maybe you’ll make me lose it for a day.  But when the sun rises, I’ll be on top again.

As long as there is someone up there watching out for me… I will persevere.

5 thoughts on “It’s comedy, seriously. Part 2.

  1. I’m on night shift scavenging for things to do on-line.  I just wanted to say that I really like these posts.  Having been making people laugh as long as we have, comedy still never ceases to intrigue me.  I don’t think I’ll ever understand what makes something funny, but I suppose I can try.

    It makes me want to write about it as well… we could probably write a novel.  In fact maybe we should.

  2. i saw your comment on stef’s myspace, and i must agree that you guys do have an unusually high concentration of that good ol’ talent stuff floating around amongst you.  care to share?!

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