Comedy has a popular meaning (stand-up, along with any discourse generally intended to amuse), which differs from its academic definition, namely the comic theatre, whose Western origins are found in Ancient Greece. The theatrical genre can be simply described as a dramatic performance pitting two societies against each other in an amusing agon or conflict. Comedy contains variations on the elements of surprise, incongruity, conflict, repetitiveness, and the effect of opposite expectations, and there are many recognized genres.
Satire and political satire use ironic comedy to portray persons or social institutions as ridiculous or corrupt, thus alienating their audience from the object of humor. Parody borrows the form of some popular genre, artwork, or text but uses certain ironic changes to critique that form from within (though not necessarily in a condemning way). Screwball comedy derives its humor largely from bizarre, surprising (and improbable) situations or characters. Black comedy is defined by dark humor that makes light of so-called dark or evil elements in human nature. Similarly scatological humor, sexual humor, and race humor create comedy by violating social conventions or taboos in comedic ways. A comedy of manners typically takes as its subject a particular part of society (usually upper class society) and uses humor to parody or satirize the behavior and mannerisms of its members. Romantic comedy is a popular genre (also known as rom com or romcom) that depicts burgeoning romance in humorous terms and focuses on the foibles of those falling in love.
Kung Fu Hustle (Chinese: 功夫; pinyin: Gōngfu) is a 2004 Hong Kong martial arts film co-written, co-produced, directed by and starring Stephen Chow. The film is a humorous parody and a homage to the wuxia genre, and contains most of the characteristics of a typical wuxia movie with exaggerations, serious situations and comic plots. Set in 1930s Shanghai, it is a tale of redemption for the central character, portrayed by Chow, a petty criminal who is trying to join the city's most-powerful gang. The use of visual effects have been widely acclaimed and the cartoon style of the movie accompanied by traditional Chinese music is its most striking feature. Although the film features the return of a number of retired 1970s actors of Hong Kong action cinema, it is in stark contrast to recent martial arts films that have made an impact in the West, such as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Hero. The film was released on 23 December 2004 after two years of production and received positive reviews from critics. It went on to become the highest grossing film in the history of Hong Kong, and the highest grossing foreign language film in the United States in 2005.
Clowns are comic performers, stereotypically characterized by their colored wigs, stylistic makeup, outlandish costumes, and unusually large footwear. Clowning, in its most basic form, can be described as one form of drama without a fourth wall, however there are other types of drama that are lacking the element of a fourth wall as well. In other words, a clown acknowledges his audience. The clown's humor today is often visual and includes many elements of physical comedy or slapstick humor.
Garry Moore (born Thomas Garrison Morfit January 31, 1915–November 28, 1993) was an American entertainer, game show host and comedian, best known for his work in television. A radio personality of the 1940s, Moore was a television host on several game and variety show programs during the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Moore's career began in the radio industry after dropping out of high school. He moved on to the television industry following success as a radio host. Moore hosted the The Garry Moore Show, game show I've Got a Secret, and game show To Tell the Truth. His popularity on I've Got a Secret led to a movie appearance, where he played himself on the set of the show. After being diagnosed with throat cancer in 1976, Moore retired from the television industry. He spent his time in South Carolina, and his summer home in Maine during retirement. He died on November 28, 1993.
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Terms: Black comedy • Comedian • Comedy club • Comedy of manners • Convention (norm) • Irony • Komos • Parody • Political satire • Race humor • Restoration comedy • Satire • Screwball comedy • Surreal humour • Taboo • Toilet humor
Comedy genres: Bouffon • Comedy film • Anarchic comedy film • Gross-out film • Parody film • Romantic comedy film • Screwball comedy film • Slapstick film • Comic novel • Dramedy • Improvisational comedy • Musical comedy • Stand-up comedy • Alternative comedy • Impressionist (entertainment) • One-liner joke • Comedy genres • Sketch comedy • Television comedy • Radio comedy • Situation comedy • Tragicomedy
History of theatre: Ancient Greek comedy • Ancient Roman comedy • Burlesque • Citizen comedy • Clown • Comedy of humours • Comedy of manners • Comedy of menace • Comédie larmoyante • Commedia dell'arte • Face • Jester • Restoration comedy • Shakespearean comedy • Dadaist/Surrealist • Theatre of the absurd
Comedy events and awards: British Comedy Awards • Canadian Comedy Awards • Cat Laughs Comedy Festival • Edinburgh Festival Fringe • Just for laughs • Melbourne International Comedy Festival • New York Underground Comedy Festival
Lists: List of comedians • List of British comedians • List of Canadian comedians • List of Finnish comedians • List of German language comedians • List of Italian comedians • List of Mexican comedians • List of Puerto Rican comedians • List of Indian comedians • List of British TV shows remade for the American market • List of comedies • List of New York Improv comedians