The Lower Quote, As If You Didn't Know, Is By Richard Dawkins, Son.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Comedy, Feminism, & Rape Culture

I love Jim Norton and his brash, completely honest style of comedy. He recently was on a show called Totally Biased to debate Lindy West of Jezebel. It was a good back and forth with points made by Norton and West that were valid. I tend to come down on the side of Norton in this, mostly because in a comedy club, you have to be ready for jokes to be made about anything. You really can't expect everyone to censor themselves because of your situation.

Penn Jillette once told a story of a woman who came to their show and, during an escape illusion where Teller is upside-down in a tank of water and appears to drown, had to leave. A close relative (husband, son, I can't remember) had recently drown, and this act was much too close to home for her to deal with and find humorous.

When a member of Penn & Teller's crew (or a theatre usher) asked her why she left while she was crying in the lobby, she told the story and the person apologized on behalf of Penn & Teller. The woman said that no apology was necessary because the issue was on her end and she just couldn't be there. The show itself was fine.

That's the way I feel about comedy clubs. The show is (usually) fine. As Norton said, there are a lot of shitty comics out there, but the good ones will take areas of discomfort and societal taboo and throw them in your face, hopefully with a funny punchline.

Here is Norton's tweet and the unedited debate from Totally Biased.

1 Barbaric Yawps:

At 14/12/13 11:59 pm, Anonymous Woody said...

Thanks for the link Heathen Mike. Some good discussion and a little self-examination is great for me.


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