Friday, April 10, 2009


When I first moved to the United States, I kept discovering what I thought were comedy channels. First, I stumbled upon this beautiful parody of a news program. The newscasters were screaming at the people they were pretending to interview. They perverted every news item they could find in the most exaggerated outlandish fashion. There seemed to be a sort of a competition over who will manage to make the most outrageous statement. I laughed so hard it hurt. Then I discovered that this was an actual news channel and the viewers were expected to take everything that they saw seriously. This was, of course, Fox News.

Later on, I discovered another hilarious late night program. It parodied religious discourse in a shockingly funny manner. One of the comedians would say, for example: "You think Jesus is a loser? You think Jesus is a freak? Well, I'm here to change your mind and show to you that Jesus is not all that stupid!" The people on stage were screaming, running around, crying, laughing, singing, and misquoting the Bible to make it sound funny. I loved this show. Then a friend told me that these were actual preachers and they were dead serious.

Then, I found a channel that left no room for doubt as to its purpose. It was called "Comedy Channel." Good, I thought, finally I will be able to listen to actual comedians. After spending some time watching this channel, however, I discovered that it was no match for the comedic impact of Fox News and the Evangelical preachers. For instance, there was a comic who went on for an hour saying things like: "Women are too emotional, you can never hope to understand them (a weird example). Women just have no logic, you shouldn't try reasoning with them (another weird example). Women can never be friends, they would betray each other in a second for a guy (no example whatsoever)."

I'm really losing hope of getting what is considered funny and why.

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