Portal:Comedy

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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.

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The Simpsons star at the Hollywood Walk of Fame
The Simpsons is an animated American sitcom created by Matt Groening for the Fox Broadcasting Company. It is a soft-satirical parody of the "Middle American" lifestyle epitomized by its titular family, which consists of Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie. The show is set in the fictional town of Springfield, and lampoons many aspects of the human condition, as well as American culture, society as a whole, and television itself. Since its debut on December 17, 1989, the show has aired 408 episodes over 19 seasons. It is presently airing its nineteenth season. The Simpsons has won dozens of awards since it debuted as a series, including 23 Emmy Awards, 24 Annie Awards and a Peabody Award. Time magazine's December 31, 1999 issue named it the 20th century's best television series. The Simpsons is the longest-running American sitcom. Homer's annoyed grunt "D'oh!" has been adopted into the English lexicon, while The Simpsons has been cited as an influence on many adult-oriented animated sitcoms.

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Top to bottom: Chico, Harpo, Groucho and Zeppo (1931)
Credit: Ralph F. Stitt

The Marx Brothers were a popular team of sibling comedians who appeared in vaudeville, stage plays, film, and television.

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Nancy Cartwright
Nancy Campbell Cartwright (born October 25, 1957) is an American film and television actress, comedienne and voice artist. Noted for her long-running role as Bart Simpson on the animated television series The Simpsons, she also voices other characters for the show, including Nelson Muntz, Ralph Wiggum, Todd Flanders, Kearney and Database. Born in Dayton, Ohio, Cartwright moved to Hollywood in 1978 and trained as a voice actress alongside Daws Butler. Her first professional role was voicing Gloria in the animated series Richie Rich, which she followed up with a starring role in the television movie Marian Rose White and her first feature film in Twilight Zone: The Movie in 1983. Cartwright continued to audition for voice-over and live-action roles, and in 1987, she decided to audition for a role in a series of animated shorts about a dysfunctional family on The Tracey Ullman Show. Cartwright intended to audition for the role of Lisa Simpson, the eldest daughter; however, when she arrived at the audition, she found the role of her brother Bart to be much more interesting. Matt Groening, creator of the shorts, allowed her to audition for Bart, and gave her the job on the spot after hearing her read. For her work as Bart, Cartwright would receive a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Voice-Over Performance in 1992 and an Annie Award for Best Voice Acting in the Field of Animation in 1995.

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Jerry Seinfeld
There were two keys to the show [Seinfeld]. Our sense of humor is combustible together. There was no idea he [ Larry David ] would have that I couldn’t immediately get onto and say, ‘Yeah, then we’ll do that and then we’ll do that.’ We’re very combustible together. The other thing, equally as important to me, absolutely, if not more important, is we shared a relentless work ethic, both of us.

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Comedy
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Terms: Black comedyComedianComedy clubComedy of mannersConvention (norm)IronyKomosParodyPolitical satireRace humorRestoration comedySatireScrewball comedySurreal humourTabooToilet humor

Comedy genres: BouffonComedy filmAnarchic comedy filmGross-out filmParody filmRomantic comedy filmScrewball comedy filmSlapstick filmComic novelDramedyImprovisational comedyMusical comedyStand-up comedyAlternative comedyImpressionist (entertainment)One-liner jokeComedy genresSketch comedyTelevision comedyRadio comedySituation comedyTragicomedy

History of theatre: Ancient Greek comedyAncient Roman comedyBurlesqueCitizen comedyClownComedy of humoursComedy of mannersComedy of menaceComédie larmoyanteCommedia dell'arteFaceJesterRestoration comedyShakespearean comedyDadaist/SurrealistTheatre of the absurd

Comedy events and awards: British Comedy AwardsCanadian Comedy AwardsCat Laughs Comedy FestivalEdinburgh Festival FringeJust for laughsMelbourne International Comedy FestivalNew York Underground Comedy Festival

Lists: List of comediansList of British comediansList of Canadian comediansList of Finnish comediansList of German language comediansList of Italian comediansList of Mexican comediansList of Puerto Rican comediansList of Indian comediansList of British TV shows remade for the American marketList of comediesList of New York Improv comedians

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