I have a high interest in comedy. Writing and drawing it, reading and watching it, studying and cuddling it.
Trying to be funny is a way of life for me. When I have the time, I want to bury myself in trying to be funny in my comics as often as possible.
But horror is also a lifelong fascination of mine. Some of my strongest early memories are of drawing monsters, wearing scary masks, and trying to convince my mom to let me stay up and watch scary movies on TV. I've written a couple of horror screenplays and would love to do more scary stories. It seems a little harder to do than comedy for some reason.
The funny and the freaky have a strong association with one another. A scary movie or book can be full of tension when it's going right - breaking that tension briefly is an important way of sustaining interest in a longer piece of fiction. I noticed a long time ago that the humor in a horror movie doesn't even half to be particularly funny to be successful and get a big laugh. People are waiting for that breather. Horror can be well served by a dose of comedy.
It doesn't necessarily work the same way in reverse; comedy pieces aren't always peppered with bits of horror. Maybe it's more a matter of tension and release. But the comedy-horror genre is a strong one, though tricky to do well. It's easy to go too light on the scary parts and make them unintentionally humorous. Or to do lame comedy in the horror flick (though like I said, the bar for comedy is very low when the tension or fear is working).
I think the relationship between the two has something to do with the similar workout it gives to the emotions. Good comedy shows us the absurdity of ourselves and our lives, and gives us therapy for it. Good horror lets us feel emotions we don't want to feel, but in a safe way, giving us similar therapy. Horror is often compared to riding a roller coaster.
I read something, maybe in Stephen King's book “Danse Macabre”, about the desired experience in horror of the audience not knowing whether to laugh or scream. Horror should be FUN (but maybe that's another newspost).
Horror Comedy Movies:
An early favorite movie of mine was Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein.
The classic monsters are played straight and true to themselves, and the comedy still holds up something like 70 years later!
Another great success was SCREAM, especially the first one (though the formula was repeated with okay results in several sequels, and done quite well in the recent series, too.
Shaun of the Dead is great! One of the best written-and-made movies ever.
Tucker and Dale vs. Evil is an underappreciated winner in this category, too (especially if you like the slasher or demented hillbilly genres like I do!). In that one, two lovable hicks are mistaken for psychotic killers by a bunch of college students, who try to fight the rednecks but keep accidentally killing themselves. Pretty great, and with hilarious performances by the leads.
If your tastes run a bit darker, I'd recommend Re-Animator, Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, and Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness.
There's the first October Newspost, in any case! Talk to ya again soon!
Banes at 12:00AM, Oct. 6, 2016
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