Monday, October 24, 2011

Rant #602: Comedy Just Isn't Funny Anymore

As Friday was Friday, Saturday and Sunday were Saturday and Sunday for myself and my family.

Nothing with nothing.

So my wife decided to rent a few movies from the local Redbox machine.

How bad can the movies be for a dollar apiece? Even if they were awful, for a dollar, you can take a chance.

Well, we saw two stinkers, we sure did, and it addresses a problem that I have seen recently with comedy.

Comedy isn't funny anymore.

Maybe the times have passed me by, but I simply do not laugh at today's comedies, whether big screen or small screen.

I just don't find them funny.

I guess all the scatalogical references, all the sex references, and all the drug/drunk references turn me off too much.

I love to laugh as much as the other guy, and believe me, I am far from being a prude, but the constant pounding of comedies with these "jokes" and situations, well, it just isn't funny.

Take the first movie we saw, "Zookeeper."

Look, I wasn't expecting "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" here, but I expected something more from Kevin James, since his show, "The King of Queens," was probably the last TV show I really laughed out loud at.

Here, James plays the usual schlemeil, the guy who is in total self doubt about himself and the girl that he needs is right there in front of him.

Animals who can speak is so old already. I used to laugh at Goliath in "Davy and Goliath," and the dog in "The People's Choice" was pretty funny, but in 2011, this is so old hat as to be not funny.

And it wasn't in this movie. Not at all.

Then we have "Bridesmaids," starring comely Kristen Wiig.

Here we have a film about female bonding, in a way, revolving around a wedding party supporting the matrimonial vows of a best friend--or is the girl still a best friend?

This film was marketed as a comedy, a raunchy one at that, but it really isn't.

It isn't funny at all, and it has more dramatic tension than humorous scenes--or scenes meant to be humorous--anyway.

And it isn't funny, unless you like scenes of vomiting, elimination, and constant use of four-letter words.

I don't know, I don't find this stuff funny at all. For the two films, I probably laughed twice.

(I should have known--one of the stars of "Bridesmaids" is the star of the lamentable "Mike and Molly" TV show that I recently railed about.)

Funny, but in between films, my wife and I watched reruns of "The Dick Van Dyke Show" on TV Land.

Yes, I know the shows are cut to shreds on this station, but they leave in enough so that you can still laugh out loud, and marvel at the cleverness of these shows from the early to mid 1960s.

Ironically, they ran a show this weekend that I think addresses why I don't find current comedy that funny.

One show we saw had Rob Petrie (Dick Van Dyke) meet up with an old codger that was once his boss. He was Rob's comedy mentor, and Rob offered him a job working for him as one of the writers on "The Alan Brady Show."

When he begins to work with the other writers, he can't come up with a good gag if his life depended on it. He is from the old school (or what was the old school back in 1962 or so).

It isn't working out, and Rob has to let the old man go--but not before tapping into his brain, where he develops, using the old man's ideas, a sketch about--

Comedy not being funny anymore.

And the sketch was a riot!

So even back then, some people found the current comedy scene in 1962 far inferior to earlier times.

Now that is funny.

Today's movies and TV shows go for the lowest laugh, and the laughs simply are not there.

I don't know if it has to do with the lack of talent of the writers and the performers, or that now that everything is permissive, there isn't that much creativity anymore.

But I simply don't laugh at today's offerings. I find them offensive, vulgar, and every other adjective that fits with the term "unfunny."

I am still looking for something new to laugh at.

And I am just not finding it.

And that, to me, is no laughing matter.

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