Amusing or Ridiculous?
Write your opinion on what makes a text humorous in a qualitative way. I am curious about what you think a good funny story is. List criteria and preferences, and whatever else crosses your mind.
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Christy Leigh Stewart
Many subjects that are used in humor are not only un-funny but devastating in real life, such a murder or abuse. It may seem like using them in humor makes the subect easier to deal with, or can be talked about from different angles and understood better...but that isn't always so with still taboo subjects such as r*** or p***.

Can loaded subjects such as r*** or p*** ever be funny? If so, what do you think the writer has to do to MAKE them funny and not just off color or out right offensive.

I love seeing people using really shocking and offensive subject matter in their humor. Im very tired of people on TV "pushing the envelope" when all they are doing is using obvious over done humor.

8/27/2007 #1
fatbird33
i think that this is very true, having r*** and pediphiles in a humor story is not humorous. in fact it makes me worry about the saneness of the writer, and it disgusts me. it's like their still three and into 'potty talk' excpet their vocabulary has expanded. death, however can be funny if done in the right fashion.
11/16/2007 #2
Gai
It's a variety of things, sometimes it's just a matter of taste on the part of the author. There are lots of movies out there that have stuff like someone having sex with a dead animal. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if that was a deleted scene from Freddy Got Fingered. Part of it depends on the viewer/reader, where one may be able to laugh at something that another is offended about. It could be that the first person has no sense of dignity and laughs at less than humorous things, or it could be that the second person is just a tightass who gets offended by the word 'damn'. Some things might be more delicate of a subject to certain people because they've been personally affected by it, so they're not as able to laugh it off as the writer was. I guess it's just that taste in humor, like everything else about it, is pretty relative.
11/25/2007 #3
Adenil
I'm fairly certain that the reader has to be a certain type to find things like that funny. The sterotypical callous man, for instance. Somtimes, thou, these things are funny because they are so disgusting. We're grossed out and entertained at the same time. People will unfortunatly always find some humor in a disgusting joke about sex, because sex is somthing people don't feel able to talk about in any 'real' terms.
2/13/2008 #4
Thoughtless7
Putting taboo subjects into humor is...tricky. And no matter what, someone, somewhere, would probably get offended, while someone else will find it hilarious. The reason for not using r*** in common humor is because of the huge impact it has on its victims. It's a heavy subject, so it's hard to lighten the situation. And of course, a lot of people don't want to get in trouble so don't even mention the subject. The most common area where r*** is joked about would be, I think, in certain anime fandoms, especially yaoi fandoms. From where I've been, anyways.
2/27/2008 #5
Fractured Illusion

Can loaded subjects such as r*** or p*** ever be funny?

Yeah.

Ever heard of P***-bear? It's a running joke on the intrawebs. A hit too :p

If you take the topics seriously, then they will not be as fun. But you can make fun of any taboo subject or issue. Applying to a STORY might be a bit more difficult than just having the jokes, but I think its very much possible.

10/25/2008 #6
Mortal Soul

Hmm, have any of you watch Meet the Spartans? That movie was flamed so bad for it's offensive material. I was pretty much grossed out watching it. The zoophilia, homosexuality, violence on minors, was not funny at all (nor the way how they put on the Leave Britney Alone.) etc.

Now for stories, hmm, well if r*** in a way is used humoriously, then I think it may work.

Still, there are r*** victim out there that feel so horrified to be reminded seeing (reading) it. Hmm, why is it always in yaoi material? Why not yuri?

9/5/2009 #7
Fractured Illusion

Still, there are r*** victim out there that feel so horrified to be reminded seeing (reading) it.

There are victims of everything! If you use that argument, you are in a circle you can never get out. I think it's ridiculous to limit and censur yourself like that because others have suffered.

Will authors not publish stories with natural disasters because people who have been in them are traumatized?

Will we stop writing about murder because of the many shattered families?

Will we stop writing about love because all of those that are heartbroken?

No.

So I don't see why r*** is all that special. It can be used just like any other act in a story.

Hmm, why is it always in yaoi material? Why not yuri?

I got no clue. Maybe in yaoi they avenge the r***, but in yuri it's all femmes, and we all knoooow that females can't do dangerous things like that, blabla.

But yeah - yaoi stories need to cut down on the r*** for the simple fact that it is overused. XD

9/6/2009 #8
Mortal Soul

I got no clue. Maybe in yaoi they avenge the r***

The main guy r*** the other main guy and they fall in love... well same goes for avenging if in the manga and FP stories if the guy (Side Character) who r*** one of the main characters and he would want revenge.... those kind of yaoi r*** stories are confusing.

There are victims of everything!

Yeah... nevertheless some people (this also includes me who has also suffered in something as listed) will never stop writing(typing) those stories.

9/6/2009 #9
Fractured Illusion

The main guy r*** the other main guy and they fall in love...

Oh wow, they have started new trends since I last checked in XD Kind of an extreme Stockholm Syndrome, there. I imagine it very hard to pull off.

9/6/2009 #10
Mortal Soul

Very.

9/6/2009 #11
zooropoid

I find it depressing how many people use r*** as a punchline now. I've felt very disappointed when I've watched/read something I've previously enjoyed, and something along these lines just arrives as a joke. It's one of my bugbears and I could go on about it for hours...

4/13/2010 #12
WolfletteMoon
As with just about everything else, I think it comes down to the writer and how they handle it. If it's handled baddly, it's offencive, whether it be in a comedy or in a more serious work like a drama or a romance. If it's handled well then it can be funny or dramatic or heart-breaking or whatever the author intends it to be. It's all about how it's written, and that's somehting you can't teach. However, I will say that in terms of comedy, such serious topics should be left to more experienced and confident writers, as newer writers or writers who aren't confident writing comedy can easily go wrong, and these sorts of things can be a career breaker.
12/14/2011 #13
Sentio Infirmum

I think it's kind of strange that this even came up. Still, it's an interesting debate.

I think that as long as the person writing the story is a good writer, it should be okay. A person would need to be careful not to come off as disrespectful to people who've actually experienced it, but they'd also need to keep it light, you know, humorous; it'd be hard, but possible. If it's handled right, I bet it could be very impressive, and possibly more poignant than if the author had handled it seriously. Humor implies a certain level of forgiveness, which would be a very strong and memorable way to characterize the victim in the story.

I've never been through anything even vaguely similar, so I couldn't even begin to imagine the horror someone must feel in a situation like that. Most of us out there - who have never experienced quite that level of suffering - would not be able to realistically capture what one would think or feel. If I were going to do it - which I wouldn't, because I know that I am not experienced or knowledgable enough to do it well - I would want to establish first that the character is a uniquely forgiving person, perhaps as a defense mechanism or because of a mental problem. Either way, I'd make sure, long before anything really awful happens, the reader understands that the humorous character possesses an almost delusional capablity to make light of things that he or she shouldn't be able to. Then, when it comes time for the character to be funny about r***, the reader would not be quite so flustered. In fact, it would become almost more depressing than if the character had treated the subject in a serious way. It creates a new depth and insight into the way human beings act bizarre in loaded situations.

What comes to mind, for me, is Truman Capote's "In Cold Blood". That was a true story- for those who haven't read it, do so. Capote masterfully told the story of the mysterious and brutal murder of the Clutter family; the scene I'm thinking of is the killers' confessions, because they were such abstract, unique, bizarre human beings that they told the story in a humorous way. Their lighthearted confessions painted a very distinct picture of their insanity- because, if their act didn't prove it well enough, the strange telling of the strange story shows us that they really are maniacs. And the acts of the family members on the night of their deaths were funny too- because that's all they could do. I still smile a little bit - and with a good amount of guilt for doing so - remembering dear Mr. Clutter's admission that he had no cash - he always did business by check - and his offer to write them a check. And then the killer's "What kind of Mongolians do you think we are?"

Anyway, I'm rambling a bit now, aren't I? I'm finished.

4/29/2012 #14
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