Dead Man Laughing. Comedy, family, class (British) and death intertwine in this essay by Zadie Smith. [more inside]
The Hollywood Reporter has, once again, released excellent roundtable discussions with notable television actors: Comedy Actor Roundtable (Rob Lowe, Aziz Ansar, Jeffrey Tambour, Tony Hale, Anthony Anderson, Keegan-Michael Key, Jerrod Carmichael) [1h7m], Comday Actress Roundtable (Allison Janney, Lily Tomlin, Gina Rodriguez, Rachel Bloom, Niece Nash, Ilana Glazer) [52m], Drama Actor Roundtable (Cuba Goodling Jr., Rami Malek, Paul Giamatti, Forest Whitaker, Wanger Moura, Bobbay Cannavale) [55m], Drama Actress Roundtable (Kirsten Dunst, Julianna Marguiles, Jennifer Lopez, Kerry Washington, Sarah Paulson, Regina King, Constance Zimmer) [lh13m]
A couple of days later, I stood in front of a mirror and slowly unbuttoned my shirt. When I looked down, what I saw turned out to be just a flat chest with fresh scars on their way to looking healed. My stitches had dissolved. I took my shirt off and stared at myself, thinking, “Lake was right, I can do this.” - Tig Notaro on luck, love, family, friends, fame, stand up, her new book, and life after breasts
"... since the audience could not, would not, and did not, endure his interpretations of the classics. A riot was the inevitable result, death or serious injury the probable outcome, of these attempts." So wrote Edith Sitwell of the in/famous amateur thespian Robert "Romeo" Coates in her book English Eccentrics, here appreciated by the Paris Review blog. [more inside]
The Chris Gethard Show started at UCB, moved to public access (previously), and can now be seen on Fusion TV and online. It's a talk show, a call-in show, a Skype-in show, a comedy show, an audience-participation show, and a grand, weird, and delightful tv experiment that also isn't afraid to explore mental health issues (previously - cw: suicide.) Season 1 full episodes (22:00 ea.). Season 2 full episodes (44:00 ea.). Wikipedia List of show regulars, characters, and celeb guests. [more inside]
The United Shades of America is a new show on CNN. It's hosted by standup comic W. Kamau Bell, and he says the show is about "a black guy who goes where he shouldn't go or where you wouldn't expect him to go." And if you think that's hype, well, in the very first episode Bell hangs out with Ku Klux Klan members in Kentucky and Arkansas (45 minute Youtube link).
Big Play Films, the YouTube channel of PBF’s Nicholas Gurewitch (pre vi ous ly) has released a new video, “Mushroom Kingdom of Heaven.” [more inside]
Shoes - ten years ago Liam Kyle Sullivan created "Shoes", one of the first viral hits of the YouTube era featuring his Midwestern teen girl character Kelly. Now he sits down with Vice to talk about YouTube fame, touring, how it came about, and what came after.
Having trouble falling asleep? Joe Pera can help with that.
on Grindr? [NSFW kinda]
The Funny Thing About Race in South Africa
It's 1948 and it's the first day of apartheid in South Africa. A jazzy tune is playing, the sun is shining and some white people are lying on blankets on a grassy embankment. A familiar sign pops up: "Whites Only." The camera pans onto a young black man who is taking his place on the lawn as a security officer approaches. "Apartheid? Ahhh, it's today?" he says, as he's being led off the screen. "Man, I thought it was next week."
The Lunch Date is a ten-minute short film directed by Adam Davidson. It won the 1990 Short Film Palm d'Or at Cannes, the 1991 Academy Award for Best Short Subject, and in 2013 was placed in the Library of Congress. h/t Open Culture’s list of free movies
"The ONLY site with the longest list of Podcasts of Color, from all over the world covering news, racism, comedy, sports, relationships & friends chatting about a variety of subjects. Come find a new podcast to try, you need more in your life."
All 29 episodes of That Mitchell and Webb Sound, the radio precursor to David Mitchell and Robert Webb's celebrated television sketch show. [more inside]
Stand up comic Tig Notaro tells a story about Taylor Dayne. Jon Dore tells Tig Notaro a story about Goldilocks. (Tig Notaro, previously 1, 2, 3)
Steve Martin Performed Stand-up Last Night for the First Time in 35 Years "I'll be honest with you, right off the top, because I'm a little upset with the Beacon Theatre," one joke began. "I was backstage and I used the restroom. And there was a sign that read, 'Employees Must Wash hands.'" Pause. "And I could not find [pause] one employee [pause] to wash my hands."
Funny or Die Made a Trump Biopic, Starring Johnny Depp [NYT]. The 50-minute comedy is streaming now at Funny or Die. (Head's up: NYT link has spoilers!)
Bob Elliott, the legendary radio comedian has passed away at 92. It all began in Boston in the late 1940s, when Bob Elliott and Ray Goulding started goofing around on the air during rain delays of Red Sox games. Soon, they were a hit nationally as well, with such well known characters as Wally Ballou the long-suffering radio newsman and the adventures of Mary Backstayge, Noble Wife. Bob and Ray's comedy career spanned decades until Goulding's death in 1990. [more inside]
Reading a barrage of violent comments and threats doesn’t make me want to retaliate. It doesn’t make me want to fire back at those guys with the same hate and rage that they spewed my direction about me and the rest of my gender. It makes me want to censor myself. It makes me hesitant to write certain jokes. Could this tweet make hundreds of men tell me I belong locked in their closet? Will this idea I’m putting out there also end in threats of rape or murder?Is That a Threat?, by Alison Leiby for The Lighthouse.
In chronological order from Bert Williams to Amy Schumer, Vulture lists the 100 jokes that shaped modern comedy. [more inside]
On today's Comedy Bang Bang podcast it was officially announced that Weird Al will take over as bandleader for the fake talk show on IFC.
"They said they were going to put me on hold, and then hung up on me. But I had their #, a 20-minute drive ahead of me, and I do improv."
Comedian Dave Holmes trolls a couple of hapless IRS telephone scammers.
Comedian Dave Holmes trolls a couple of hapless IRS telephone scammers.
Comedian H. Jon Benjamin (Archer, Bob's Burgers) has released his first experimental jazz album. He can't play the piano.
Key and Peele may have said their goodbyes to television, but they will soon return to the big screen in their first feature film "Keanu", whose red band NSFW trailer dropped today.
Do you listen to a lot of hip-hop in in the Yakut language? Me either. But that changed when I happened upon the story of Ayal Adamov, Monty Python fan and student at Northeast Federal University, Yakutsk, Sakha Republic, Russia. One day, he heard a song that celebrated bling and money and conspicuous consumption. He felt a profound sense of disgust and, in response, composed a song that celebrated his own, humbler, rural roots. The accompanying video has to be seen to be believed; it is embedded in this article in the Siberian Times.
"Wayne Rogers, best known for playing Captain 'Trapper' John McIntyre on TV comedy series 'M.A.S.H.,' died Thursday in Los Angeles from complications of pneumonia. He was 82." [more inside]
Three attempts were made to create a Fawlty Towers for American Television. Chateau Snavely was supposed to be a tour de force starring Betty White and Harvey Korman, but the pilot never made it to air. Watching the second adaptation, Bea Arthur's Amanda's by the Sea (1983), was like being eaten alive by Filigree Siberian Hamsters. It lasted all of six weeks on ABC -- and hopefully someone gave everyone involved in that production a damned good thrashing. And then there was John Larroquette's Payne.... [more inside]
Muslim-owned comedy venue offers "Trump Special," gives free attendance to Muslim-Americans. Mo S. Fathelbab is a Muslim-American and owner of The Experiment Comedy Gallery in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. He’s offering a ‘Trump Special’ - anyone who can prove that they are Muslim by facing Mecca and reciting ‘The Fatiha’ gets free admission.
"Ma'am, you're going to have to describe the creature. Calling it indescribable doesn't help." (SLYT)
The Winners (and a small flock of runners-up) have been named in the Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards
Whether you know the basic story or not, you may enjoy Mark Steel's lecture on Beethoven's life for its entertaining (and decidedly informal) presentation.
I don't remember buying these gaudy mother fuckin shoes but am i gonna wear em? you bet your ass [more inside]
Metafilter favorite Tony Zhou is back with a video about everybody's favorite visual comedian, Buster Keaton. [more inside]
Why men don't like funny women:
When they would ask men and women what they looked for in their long-term partners, both genders would say they wanted someone “with a good sense of humor.” It was only when researchers pressed their subjects on what they meant, specifically, by “sense of humor,” that the sex difference became clear. Women want men who will tell jokes; men want women who will laugh at theirs.
Onepunch-man (ワンパンマン) a comedy/superhero webcomic created by ONE in 2009 hosted on his site which quickly became a viral hit over the years. It features the adventures of Saitama (サイタマ), an unlicensed hero, and his disciple Genos (ジェノス) as they protect the citizens in Z-city from a variety of villains and monsters. However, after all his dedication to training to become a serious hero he feels empty as everything is too easily resolved with one punch. [more inside]
RIP actor Warren Mitchell who had significant career on both stage and screen but will always be best remembered for playing the iconic and controversial bigot, Alf Garnett in the British television series Till Death Us Do Part and In Sickness and in Health [more inside]