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Old 07-13-2012, 12:43 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by LX View Post
Yeah - jokes. Now take that subject matter and make it this - wouldn't it be hilarious if that dude in the audience went home and raped his step-son? Maybe he calls up all his drinking buddies and they all have a go at it. Joke?

There's a difference between working around the edges of subject matter and bluntly personalizing it. I've done some offensive shit over the air, and I've always been against censorship, but there does need to be some level of intelligence involved. Some stuff I've done, when I look back, was just lazy and ultimately wrong-headed. Good comedy can be assaulting, but it needs to make the effort to have the audience be an accomplice to some degree. That's where going after hecklers causes problems. It changes that relationship. And that is where I thought Dice Clay failed. He only seemed interested in pulling in guys stuck in adolescence, and saying fuck you to the rest of the world.

I'm not saying this Tosh guy should pay some terrible price. He should not have to cry on Arsenio's couch. It should just be acknowledged that it wasn't funny. It was terrible comedy. It fed into some frat guy's drunken stupidity and nothing else, while pointedly attacking other audience members. The only way rape jokes could succeed would be if everyone were made to question the way violence against women has been woven into our culture. I would say Chappele's joke forces the audience to question the way a celebrity often gets a pass for terrible behavior. He plays on how people would like to see things as opposed to what they really see. There is craft in what he does. And I doubt if Gervais does anything other than undermining those abusing their power, rather than take aim at the powerless.
What if 80% of his crowd was affected and shocked and either chuckled or laughed. is it still bad comedy? Was his crowd subjected to anything out of the context of what they expect and a Tosh show?
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