Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Women and Comedy

Okay, so first off, let me say I love this new Bo Burnham video.

But however funny it may be, it's another testament to the male-dominance in comedy. Bleaaaugh!

College Humor videos are notoriously male-dominated, with a only a few reoccurring female comedians. This is definitely a pattern in comedy.

For example, funny movies featuring male actors (Role Models, the 40 year old Virgin, Knocked Up, and basically anything by Judd Apatow) are comedies. Funny movies featuring female actors are romantic comedies. What the flip, man!? Girls are funny too, give us our time to shine!

Both articles, implicitly and explicitly, point out the problem that... men are threatened by funny females. So... tragically, the guys I am likely to find attractive because they are funny will likely think I'm too funny to be attractive. This is a paradox. I mean, look at the tragedy in Funny Girl.

The fact is, that women have been getting more and more prominent in comedy as time goes on. Hopefully this means that men of the future will be socialized to thinking that funny ladies are... sexy? Many of my friends are ladies, and I would say that most of them are funny, and many of those funny girls are very funny people. Not "funny for a girl," but "hilarious for a human being in general." I know male-dominated comedy bothers a lot of my funny friends who have realized there are too many lame roles for girls. While a lot of comedy skits portray men as the funny stars, women tend to be props (see the Bo Burnham video.), girlfriends, or the straight-man (meaning they "don't get" the man's jokes or are serious).

One of the ways to fix this is to get... more women in comedy. Hellooooo, Tina Fey! (my hero!) Women who write comedy tend to write more funny roles for women, or at least have more of a gender balance in the funny department. Like the UK pointed out, men want women to appreciate their comedy, and are threatened when women make their own. To that I say, ladies! Sharpen your comedic weapons! We're gunna go cut some vestiges of patriarchy down!

And here are some vids for you:

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