Episode 553 - Out of date humour?

Oct 18, 2021

I was reading an article the other day about the comedy of Sacha Baron Cohen and how that style of comedy is now out of date, along with The Hangover and Hot Tub Time Machine. The idea is that the day for this sort of masculine, bawdy, sleazy humour has been and gone and that we're more advanced, sophisticated and enlightened now. Personally I took issue with this, I think this style of comedy is extremely relatable and eternal because of it. You can see examples of it going back thousands of years across all cultures because many factors of it are universal to the human cultural experience.

Topics and Show Notes

It's inappropriate to make fun of people for things they can't change about themselves. We should never “punch down” by making fun of groups who don't have power in society, like the homeless, ethnic, sexual and religious minorities. But sex based humour, or humour based around a masculine point of view, even if it's tawdry and immature, is not wrong or inappropriate. At least that's my feeling on the matter. It's a complex subject and Banes and Tantz had slightly differing points of view and we touch on things like satire as well, you'll have to listen to the Quackcast to hear them! :)

When people talk about crass, “out of date” humour they usually reference Married With Children. This is another thing that really gets to me because they totally ignore the cultural context of that show. When Married With Children came out in the late 80s is was a breath of fresh air and sharply contrasted with the predominant style of comedy coming out of the USA at the time, it was completely dominated by glurgey semi dramatic sickly sweet comedy with a message, shows like Golden Girls, MASH, Family Ties, Growing Pains, Different Strokes etc. The list is HUGE because that was the main style of comedy and it continued well into the 90s. Those examples were all very good shows, but they has a massive dose of sentimentalism which Married With Children totally eschewed and that make it very different and special. Today that kind of cynicism is not a rare thing anymore but back then it was and we have the popularity of Married With Children to thank for reintroducing it into our culture. Its bawdy, raunchy comedy is just as relevant today as it was then because the archetypes it's based on are just as universal.

What's your opinion on so called “out of date” comedy?

This week Gunwallace has given us the theme to The Designersaurs - Rocking, bopping, pop! Finger-snapping fun. This joyous, light, bright ditty is designed to make you happy and ready for fun. A good piece of synth electronica, reminiscent of 80s future music.

Topics and shownotes

Links

Featured comic:
EVA of Asgard - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/news/2021/oct/12/featured-comic-eva-of-asgard/

Featured music:
The Designersaurs - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/The_Designersaurs/ - by Jotravers, rated E.

Special thanks to:
Gunwallace - http://www.virtuallycomics.com
Tantz Aerine - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Tantz_Aerine/
Ozoneocean - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/ozoneocean
Banes - https://www.theduckwebcomics.com/user/Banes/

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Episode 547 - Franchise fail

Sep 2, 2021

4 likes, 2 comments

There seemed to be a lull for a while after the 1990s and the massive sequel craze of the 80s, but nowadays we're back in full swing again with sequels, reboots and reinvisioning of film and TV franchises. Banes noticed a distinct pattern of behaviour that occurred around bad or failed franchises: The makers would chose to go against what existing fans liked about the property in the fist place, usually in order to appeal to new fans. When both new fans and old ones dislike what they do, they attack the fans and blame the fans for failure of their version. Then they'll search and find a new franchise to mess up. It's rare that people own up to or admit to failures anymore, it's usually always the fault of the fans for being too “toxic”.

Episode 285 - Ride the wave of the Anti-heroes

Aug 22, 2016

3 likes, 5 comments

Comedy anti-heroes are a great deal of fun. My faves are characters like Tankgirl and Flashman; they can be selfish, greedy, violent, lustful, out for their own needs first but they still manage to do the “right” thing and vanquish the bad guy along the way regardless, or a character like George Costanza from Seinfeld who's jealous, pathetic, cowardly and greedy but we still love him anyway because identify with him and root for him against the unloving forces of the universe. To be a GOOD comedy anti-hero you have to keep the audience on their side though and that can be a tricky balancing act, you have to surf a number of factors (especially in a long running project), since to actually BE an anti-hero they need to have things about them that an audience would normally despise, these need to be counteracted by things like sympathy and pathos, traits we strongly identify with, intelligence, luck, charm, humour, sexiness, coolness, allowing them to win sometimes, or even redeeming some of their anti-hero behaviours occasionally. Get that balance wrong and they can so easily completely lose audience favour and sour the rest of the story/show/film. Pitface, Tantz, and Banes weigh in on this with me. And there are more opinions in the forum thread from which this evolved. Gunwallace's musical theme this week was for Pestilent. It's thoughtful, haunting, reminds me a little of a classic horror film soundtrack. Pretty scary!

Episode 283 - Writing Dialogue pt1

Aug 8, 2016

3 likes, 8 comments

Dialogue is a key part of any comic, it pushes the story along, keys the reader in on things that would be otherwise ambiguous, hints and foreshadows at future happenings, creates humour… well, it's just a big part of comics, that's all! And that's what we're chatting about here in this Quackcast! The topic stems from a forum thread I posted a while ago asking people about their approach to creating dialogue and how people go about it; is it heavily scripted in advance or is it one of the last things you come up with? People had some very interesting responses! Gunwallace's musical theme was Magical Misfits. The sound is magical, classical, threatening, yet full of adventure! Love those creeping cellos, the violin and clarinet sound like a humorous dialogue between the wittier members of the party.

Episode 267 - The DD Community asks Banes

Apr 18, 2016

5 likes, 7 comments

In Quackcast 266 we interviewed the mad Mr Banes… We turned a giant battleship spotlight around and shone it directly into his eyes and bombarded him with high explosive armour piercing questions until he eventually failed under the onslaught, keeled over and sunk down into the depths, drowning all his brave seamen… Wait a minute, Banes isn't a ship, I got carried away with my metaphors. Anyway, that was then and this is now! THIS time we turned it over the the community instead (Pitface's idea), and they asked him all crazy insane questions. Banes answered with good humour like the amazing guy he really is :) Gunwallace gave us an amazingly cool 1980s videogame and metal themed turn for Satan Ninja 198X!

Episode 266 - An evening with Banes

Apr 11, 2016

7 likes, 3 comments

Banes, in case you were unaware, is the gold plated titanium platinum alloyed anchor of the Quackcast. This stand-up Canadian gent has been a solid part of DD for a while now, without his great humour, jovial personality, great talent, and lightning wit this podcast would have died out long ago. Not only that but he's super adaptable and always willing to spend his valuable time to go above and beyond to help members of DD in whatever's going on, always there to be a part of the DD awards and other community projects. Banes donated a great big sum of money to the DD Indiegogo campaign and his reward is this very interview! Tantz Aerine, Pitface and me, Ozoneocean delve into the man behind the mystery that is BANES. Who IS this jovial, friendly, helpful Canadian guy? Well here we try and find out! Of you'd like to know more about Mr Banes yourself, please ask a question here and we'll put it to him in the next Quackcast!

Episode 228 - Conflicting conflicts conflict

Jul 19, 2015

4 likes, 0 comments

This time we're talking about conflict in webcomic writing, and any writing in general really. Conflict is one of the main drivers of a story, so you pretty much have to have it in there somewhere! But how do you approach it? Do you set it up really carefully or just put a bunch of volatile characters together and see what happens? I think for a lot of us we don't think too much about the science of our conflicts, rather we approach it artistically and develop things by feel and instinct because conflict is such an intrinsic trait. But understanding how you use it can be very useful when you're writing satisfying resolutions and climaxes. A good understanding of the types of conflict in your story is also pretty essential when you're writing a good comedy (it's a great source of humour!), and also when you're explaining or selling your work to the public: It's all very well to chat about your clever setting and your funky characters, but conflict is the reason they're IN a story to begin with and that's really what will get people wanting to read out it. I hope you enjoy Gunwallace's great porn style music type theme for Tales of Two Tiny Titty bars!

Episode 226 - The Power of Contrast

Jul 5, 2015

5 likes, 6 comments

In this Quackcast I interrogated Mr Banes on the subject of his first newspost: Contrasts. It's a subject near and dear to him, even his comic "Typical Strange“ has its name based on the concept, i.e. two words with the opposite meanings put together to create an effect. In imagery contrast is used to make darker shapes appear darker and lighter shapes lighter and to create a tension where those areas meet at the penumbra. In writing and comics it's much the same, ”laughter and tears“, ”good and evil", a sad scene contrasting with a joyous one etc. Contrasting makes both contrasted elements appear far greater than they really are, as well as serving as a source of tension, conflict, or humour. Banes and I talk about this in a rambling fashion. Gunwallace has a special treat for us today with a brilliant theme for Dead Leon! You'll want to ask him for a copy of his one ;)


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