Thursday, October 25, 2012

Thursday Roundup

Favorites and duds from Thursday's commenting.

Favorites, in no particular order:

Bevraj of Choice cracked me up this morning with this silly misunderstanding joke in the Scott Fujita post. Each component piece of this joke is funny, from rap/wrap to Fujita/fajita to the choice of El Pollo Loco. I'm still chuckling about it.

Here's a funny recontextualization from Raysism in the Scott Fujita post. This joke could work another way, too, in that it can be read as a misunderstanding on the part of the commenter, and that's also damn funny. Either way, Raysism's interpretation really does make the quote from Fujita funny as hell. Nice job. Later, he went with this hysterical one-liner in the Slow-Roasting Cop post. This joke spawned something of a comedy pyramid, but it stands alone here. There's nothing wrong with trying to get a pyramid going off someone's joke, and it's damn hard to identify when it is inappropriate. In this case, I feel like Raysism's joke is fucking fantastic, the kind of thing I wouldn't want to put my own similarly-themed joke up against.

A couple of commenters took this angle in the Australian Baseball post, but I thought DubaiAtNight had the winner. His joke stays just far enough away from the reference that it requires a little work from the reader, and it also spins the reference into an imaginative new use. That's good hustle.

All Over But The Sharting dusted off ye olde Herschel Walker reference for this funny . . . um, dialogue (?) in the Lolo Jones post. If there was any juice left in the Herschel Walker thing, you had to know it was going to be a commenter of All Over But The Sharting's caliber who'd ring it out.

Here's a joke that had to be made, from Poignant Theater in the Falling Shark post. I picture a dozen commenters perched over their keyboards waiting for the right sequence of words to pop into their heads. Poignant Theater got there first and did well with it. I don't mean that as any sort of criticism at all; in this case, there really was a Greg Norman/The Shark joke to be made, and someone had to assemble it. Just because it's right there for the taking doesn't mean it's any less funny. In fact, there are whole joke formats that rely upon a device whereby the punchline of the joke is tipped right at the outset. Point is, not all punchlines have to be a surprise. This is a solid joke.

Here's a great little false-premise joke from Rare Endangered Vuvuzela in the Tank vs. Amputee post. I call it that because Rare Endangered Vuvuzela had a funny idiom he wanted to work into a comment and needed to tweak the content of the story to bring it in line with his punchline. By assigning Tank a certain position, he gave his punchline firm footing. I have no problem with that. In fact, it's a common device on Deadspin. The key is to not push the content of the post too far afield, otherwise the whole joke becomes weak and forced and more embarrassing than funny. But because it's not hard to imagine an antagonistic Panthers fan in North Carolina taking the assigned position, the joke moves into the idiom/punchline without a hitch. Good stuff.

Our guy SavetoFavorites left this outrageous comment in the Tank vs. Amputee post, earning a round of applause. Wonderful. As I have said on many occassions, SavetoFavorites does silly better than anyone. Clever is fine, witty is fine, shocking is fine, gross is fine. I really dig silly. Silly is hard to describe, but I am more likely to laugh at silly than I am at, say, clever, which is why I am a huge fan of this guy. Later, SavetoFavorites did this in the Slow-Roasting Cop post. That's a fucking riot.

Also in the Slow-Roasting Cop post, here's another false-premise joke, this time from Universal Enveloping Algebra. Again, Universal Enveloping Algebra creates a circumstance somewhat outside the content of the post in order to shoehorn in his pun. It works! It's distilling the rough content of the post down to a basic idea, then pulling that basic idea in a new direction in order to create a new circumstance, and then using that circumstance to present a punchline. It has to be done carefully, but it totally works.

Total Fucking Duds

This should be pink, from some fat-fingered shit-head called ChiGuy99 in the Lake Cabin post.

No, you're right, cheezymadman, the quality of news is determined by its suitability to your underwhelming knowledge and interest in various sports/athletes. Jackass.

And finally, here's a genuine attempt at humor that just falls on its face, from Fozberry in the Slow-Roasting Cop post. Compared to a lot of other junk on Deadspin the last few days, this is wonderful. Here are a couple of tips: I'd stick to a single punchline, especially when presenting what amounts to a one-liner. The first joke, the bit about "eating out", it's not the worst thing ever, although I think more needs to be done with the idea in order to make it actually funny. That's your one-liner. The second part, the "cannibalingus" bit, that was doomed to failure. The only way that works as a stand-alone concept is in some kind of pyramid, but even then, there's just not much there. The fact that both words start with the letter C and have a few syllables, that's just not enough. You'll want to take that word and dress it up in some kind of funny and/or charming and/or disgusting set-up, surround it with humor and let the method of delivery do some of the work. "Cannibalingus" isn't funny enough alone to be a comment. And the question mark? The question mark, believe it or not, punts your comment over the fence. That's like asking, "is my joke funny?" A joke that is uncertain of itself will never be funny. I think.

A side note: I really, really enjoy the NBA Shit List stuff. The comments are almost universally excruciating, but the pieces themselves have all been really terrific. Here's another +1 for whoever thought this up.

Goooooooo DUAN!


  1. The Diversionist's shark joke poking fun at Michael Jordan made me laugh a little, too.

    1. Yeah, it's not bad. Tame and predictable, but not bad. I'm sure he'd appreciate your +1, though.

  2. This is great, especially when I've been away from the internet for two days. Thanks, as always, for the hard work.