Saturday, April 7, 2018

Comedy Changes Everything

I could, I suppose, start by saying that it's a truism that comedy changes everything. However, it's not a truism, but perhaps it's true. And, by that statement, I mean that, when we see something as comic, or have an association of it that is related to comedy, we see it in a different way -- inevitably somehow or somewhat comical, regardless of what it may intrinsically be. This is, albeit, a result of our own associations (and certainly this is true for me), but, in my experience, that's how it is.

Here's why I say that: I recently saw the James Montgomery Band perform (and they were awesome, by the way). During the show, James mentioned ZZ Top. I found myself unable not to think of Jon Glaser and his I-don't-even-know-how-to-describe-so-you-should-just-listen-to-it bit that relates to ZZ Top.

It reminded me of another experience, one which I now have when I see Hamlet (which, being me, is pretty often). A few years ago, I saw the Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged) at Shakespeare & Co. In it, Josh Aaron McCabe played Gertrude in the abridged Hamlet and was, to put it simply, brilliant. He played Gertrude as a kind of raspy-voiced grand dame of Miami Beach with a cocktail in one hand and a cigarette in the other (mimed). Ophelia's funeral, since it was this ridiculous version of Hamlet, was dropping a "body" through a small trap door. When he, as Gertrude, uttered the famous line, "Sweets to the sweet," he mimed flicking cigarette ashes into her grave. This was, for me, the absolutely funniest moment of what was a very funny production. It made such as strong impression on me that (and you probably now know where this is going) whenever I see Hamlet, I -- seemingly uncontrollably -- think of this moment. I even kind of chuckled under my breathe at this moment during a professional and quite good production of it that I later saw.

So, that's my point: if one has a comic association with something, it sticks. Not as brilliant as I thought, but there it is. I'm not sure what it means or if it's a big deal, but there's definitely something to it as a theory, since I've seen in practice.


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Sunday, January 21, 2018

A Thing You Need: Instant Rimshot

I found this recently:

I feel as if I should say something about how wonderful this is, but also feel as if anything I say would be superfluous. It "speaks" for itself.

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