Friday, August 21, 2015

Humour. Or the Lack Thereof.

I'm a grouch.  I don't like stupid humour or the punk'd / pranks type and get no amusement in mean spirited 'shots'.  It's one thing to poke fun at someone gently and in a manner that may heighten awareness of a gesture or speech pattern or word usage.

Think Rich Little of way back when time.

Think Tim Conway (for that matter the entire Carol Burnett ensemble right down to the cute guy who left after a couple of seasons). AKA as Lyle Waggoner, thank you Google.

I loved SNL back in the day -- not saying that the humour there isn't to my tastes these days but I can't recall the last time I turned on the current show.  I'm more of a Chevy Chase, Bill Murray, John Belushi, Gilda Radner, Dan Ackroyd, Martin Short fan than I am of the current players.

Even then, when it got mean spirited, I tuned out.

Loved Robin Williams on Happy Days and Mork and Mindy; but wasn't too fond of his attack type of stand up that he did back then; nor the foul language. It was done for shock factor and was very effective in its time.  Now, I cringe watching his standup routines.  They just aren't funny to me anymore. (yes, I know he's passed on, but he's a valid example as is Richard Pryor.)

Same with Adam Sandler and Ben Stiller.  I used to just cringe at both of those guys being in a movie I was going to watch.  But then I saw Spanglish with AS and I found myself finding the pathos in his humour.  50 First Dates is fun and thoughtful and softer than his usual schtick.   Grown Ups 1 and 2 are too. Add Blended and Just Go with It to that list. 

He still gets out of control in some movies but it sure seems like he's grown up himself.  Blended ends with one of his style of singalong songs and it's quite delightful.  He and Drew Barrymore have that 'connection' that Gable and Lombard had (yes, way back in the day). There's an honesty and trueness that they bring across the screen.  I have no idea if they have an off screen friendship or not but I suspect they do.  

Sure Benny Hill was obviously a misogynist (or so it would appear) but his brand of humour was rampant in his day and I bet a lot of people still smile and picture a manic run of semi naked women and goofy man in their minds when they hear his theme song.  

British humour doesn't translate for some people. I love it.  There's a cleverness and effort to it and while it does contain a fair amount of physicality and staging it still has the appeal of making one think to get the joke.

My all time favourites are still the Carol Burnett gang and Red Skeleton.  It was shocking to me, at the age I was when Blazing Saddles came out, to hear Harvey Korman using such language and fondling a statue *yikes*.  But Mel Brooks is right up there for me, as well.