New thoughts on Improv

There was another blog post that I read where the person said they did not like improv and I had to agree. Of all the forms of comedy that we’ve learned about so far, improv is one of my least favorite. I think what makes me not like it is the fact that it’s too unpredictable, and not knowing what could happen makes me nervous. Knowing that it could go all wrong, makes me want to cringe before the performance has even started. However, through the Halpern reading, I was able to learn a lot more about the technique and I think this made me appreciate it a bit more. Along with this, I was pleasantly surprised by how well my classmates did with their performances.

For example, I think improv is most funny to me when it is quick and witty. I love witty humor that’s fast paced, and I felt that that was the type of humor my classmates portrayed. The clips we watched in class seemed to also have the same sort of style and so I found them just as entertaining to watch.

In the reading, one of the “rules” set was the fact that honesty is usually your best bet to produce laughs. I liked this, because it’s something that I really think about whenever I watch stand up or improv. If I feel like the performers are being honest, no matter how wild the situation they’re explaining, I feel like I can trust them more, leading me to like their act more. So I liked that this rule was included because I do feel like honesty can set a great relationship between the performer and their audience.

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Christopher Hitchens can kiss my ass

Okay, so Christopher Hitchens articles were pretty difficult to read. Not because I didn’t understand him, but because I think he is incredibly annoying and ignorant. I just read the blog post saying he waxed his balls once, and maybe the pain of that caused him to lose all his reasoning.

The first question he brought up was interesting. He highlighted the idea that women seek humor in men, but not vice versa. I thought this was bull, because I’m sure men like it when a woman they are interested in is funny. I asked my boyfriend if boys tell their guy friends about whether or not a girl is funny, along with other qualities, and he said, of course. Just as I suspected. I’m sure there are some men who are threatened by a woman who is funnier than them, but I would hope that men as a whole don’t buy into that.

The point he made further on, about how women have been taught to be less bright because we would ~hate~ to intimidate men was also just as infuriating. Because here’s the thing Hitchens. Even if men only wanted women as an audience instead of rivals, that is not what they are going to get. Women are funny. Women have always been funny. We are witty, sarcastic, crude, and really just about anything. And we don’t have to be “hefty or dykey or Jewish” to be funny.

Making sense of “fake news”

Under this new presidency, it has become necessary to be able to deconstruct what is “real news” and what is “fake news”. Parodic or satirical news has often times come under fire for just that, walking along the lines of real of fake news, but it should not be written off as fake news. Parodic or satirical news, whether it be in the form of print or a parodic news segment, is really just another way that news is being presented to us, but it does so in a mocking way, allowing its readers or viewers to analyze what it is that is being mocked and why. It could also be argued that the comedic factor that goes into play with parodic or satirical news might be a coping mechanism, depending on what is being reported on.

However, like my classmate Michael Kroymann stated in his blog post, this type of news is also able to exist due to privilege and power. Often times I will see a post on my social media, mocking someone who mistook an Onion article as real. This goes along with what Michael was saying, how part of what makes satirical news appealing is the fact that it allows us to feel above others if we understand it. I did not learn what satire was until my sixth grade English class, and while I would imagine that almost everyone learns how to recognize satire in a school and learning environment, this might not be the case for everyone. This in turn creates irony in the use of fake news, because while it is trying to deconstruct other systems of power, it still manages to create its’ own.