Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Cheap Humor, Cheap Shots

I wish I had the time to explore this topic in a cogent, enlightening, way...but, hey--I'm here at the day job, and it pays the bills, so I'm doing this on the fly. And the only reason I bring it up is because a) I finished reading my manuscript "Lights! Camera! Love!" last night, and b) well, it's a political year, ain't it?

Lots of humor on TV relies on sarcasm. For instance, when's the last time an adolescent on a sitcom was portrayed as anything but a snarky brat, quick with the snappy one-liners designed to thoroughly ridicule his/her mom or dad? Nice. Such a sure-fire mechanism to draw the yucks. And we wonder why kids grow up without learning the first thing about respect.

Which brings me to the current state of politics. Isn't there any other way to drive home a point than to use sarcasm? Are we as a nation so desensitized, that the only way we "get" something is if it's couched in sarcasm? And I'm not just talking politicians, although gee--wouldn't it be cool if they led by example? And I'm not talking one party vs. the other--they're both guilty.

But when it's the anchormen engaging in tit-for-tat...geez, I'm getting so bored.

The same holds true in romance writing. Bickering doesn't equal conflict--at least to me--and, it's not amusing. After reading my manuscript last night, I'm supremely satisfied that the conflict and humor derive from clever turns of phrases and unusual word usage--not from two people trying to verbally lay each other low.

Hm. For a post on humor, this ain't too funny, eh? I guess for additional entertainment, I could point you to the youtube videos that prompted this post, but then I'd be contributing to precisely what I wish would go away.

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