Portal:Comedy
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Portal:Comedy

The Comedy Portal


In a modern sense, comedy (from the Greek: ?, k?m?idía) is a genre of fiction that refers to any discourse or work generally intended to be humorous or amusing by inducing laughter, especially in theatre, television, film, stand-up comedy, or any other medium of entertainment. The origins of the term are found in Ancient Greece. In the Athenian democracy, the public opinion of voters was influenced by the political satire performed by the comic poets at the theaters. The theatrical genre of Greek comedy can be described as a dramatic performance which pits two groups or societies against each other in an amusing agon or conflict. Northrop Frye depicted these two opposing sides as a "Society of Youth" and a "Society of the Old." A revised view characterizes the essential agon of comedy as a struggle between a relatively powerless youth and the societal conventions that pose obstacles to his hopes. In this struggle, the youth is understood to be constrained by his lack of social authority, and is left with little choice but to take recourse in ruses which engender very dramatic irony which provokes laughter.

Satire and political satire use comedy to portray persons or social institutions as ridiculous or corrupt, thus alienating their audience from the object of their humor. Parody subverts popular genres and forms, critiquing those forms without necessarily condemning them.

Other forms of comedy include screwball comedy, which derives its humor largely from bizarre, surprising (and improbable) situations or characters, and black comedy, which is characterized by a form of humor that includes darker aspects of human behavior or human nature. Similarly scatological humor, sexual humor, and race humor create comedy by violating social conventions or taboos in comic ways. A comedy of manners typically takes as its subject a particular part of society (usually upper-class society) and uses humor to parody or satirize the behavior and mannerisms of its members. Romantic comedy is a popular genre that depicts burgeoning romance in humorous terms and focuses on the foibles of those who are falling in love.

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Trey Parker and Matt Stone
"Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo" is the ninth episode of the first season of the animated comedy television series South Park. The show's first Christmas special, it portrays the Jewish character Kyle feeling excluded from the town's Christmas celebrations and being comforted by Mr. Hankey, who can talk and sing. As Mr. Hankey does not come alive in the presence of other characters, they begin to think that Kyle is delusional. In another plot strand, the townspeople remove all symbols of Christmas from South Park to render the celebrations politically correct and inoffensive. When all the children start believing in him, Mr. Hankey finally reveals himself to everyone and scolds them for losing sight of the good things of Christmas and focusing on the bad. The townspeople apologize to Kyle, then sing Christmas songs and watch Mr. Hankey fly away with Santa Claus. Heavily influenced by the Peanuts Christmas special A Charlie Brown Christmas, "Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo" was the first South Park musical episode and the only episode in season one in which Kenny does not die. It is a satire of political correctness and religious sensitivity and has been described as one of the classic South Park episodes.

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Truthiness
Credit: ReignMan

A church sign stating, "Truthiness and Consequences", taken March 10, 2007, in Cape Coral, Florida. Truthiness is a quality characterizing a "truth" that a person making an argument or assertion claims to know intuitively "from the gut" or because it "feels right" without regard to evidence, logic, intellectual examination, or facts. American television comedian Stephen Colbert coined the word in this meaning as the subject of a segment called "The Wørd" during the pilot episode of his political satire program The Colbert Report on October 17, 2005. By using this as part of his routine, Colbert satirized the misuse of appeal to emotion and "gut feeling" as a rhetorical device in contemporaneous socio-political discourse.

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Kenneth Horne (1907-1969) was an English comedian and businessman. His burgeoning career with the Triplex Safety Glass company was interrupted by wartime service with the Royal Air Force. While serving in a barrage balloon unit and broadcasting as a quizmaster on the BBC radio show Ack-Ack, Beer-Beer, he met the entertainer Richard Murdoch, with whom he wrote and starred in the comedy series Much-Binding-in-the-Marsh (1944-51). After demobilisation Horne returned to his flourishing business career, keeping his broadcasting as a sideline. He later became the chairman and managing director of toy manufacturers Chad Valley. In 1958 Horne suffered a stroke and gave up his business dealings to focus on his entertainment work. He was the anchor figure in Beyond Our Ken (1958-64). When the programme came to an end, he recorded four series of the comedy Round the Horne (1965-68). Before a planned fifth series, Horne died of a heart attack. A 2002 BBC radio survey to find listeners' favourite British comedian placed Horne third, behind Tony Hancock and Spike Milligan.

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Christian Morgenstern
Humor is the contemplation of the finite from the point of view of the infinite.

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Comedy
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Terms: Black comedyComedianComedy clubComedy of mannersConvention (norm)IronyKomosParodyPolitical satireRace humorRestoration comedySatireScrewball comedySurreal humourTabooToilet humor

Comedy genres: BouffonComedy filmAnarchic comedy filmGross-out filmParody filmRomantic comedy filmScrewball comedy filmSlapstick filmComic novelDramedyImprovisational comedyMusical comedyStand-up comedyAlternative comedyImpressionist (entertainment)One-liner jokeComedy genresSketch comedyTelevision comedyRadio comedySituation comedyTragicomedy

History of theatre: Ancient Greek comedyAncient Roman comedyBurlesqueCitizen comedyClownComedy of humoursComedy of mannersComedy of menaceComédie larmoyanteCommedia dell'arteFaceJesterRestoration comedyShakespearean comedyDadaist/SurrealistTheatre of the absurd

Comedy events and awards: British Comedy AwardsCanadian Comedy AwardsCat Laughs Comedy FestivalEdinburgh Festival FringeJust for laughsHalloween Howls Comedy FestivalMelbourne International Comedy FestivalNew York Underground Comedy Festival

Lists: List of comediansList of British comediansList of Canadian comediansList of Finnish comediansList of German language comediansList of Italian comediansList of Mexican comediansList of Puerto Rican comediansList of Indian comediansList of British TV shows remade for the American marketList of comediesList of New York Improv comedians

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