Sunday, August 10, 2014

On Tina Fey and comedy

From September 2011. My blogging anxiety was almost at boiling point.

When I was in Rhode Island this summer visiting some family friends, the husband of the family brought up the idea that comedy nowadays seems to have a common thread of people making fun of their own mediocrity for laughs, how there seems to be a turn from witty comedic writing, timing and characters, to perpetuating the idea that the lame part of yourself is enough of a joke.

For example, half of 30 Rock is basically an on-screen manifesto of Tina Fey's personal insecurities and self-perceived shortcomings (the other half (percentages arguable) her political opinion). I love Liz Lemon but this is so different than say, Kristen Wiig's character sketches in the same vein as Molly Shannon, that feel familiar yet definitely original .... Fey's self-deprecation is endearing but all TOO familiar. Or maybe it's simply the longevity element of the Liz Lemon character that has allowed her to become familiar to us, the audience. Eh, yeah. Ok, I retract that last paragraph.

Anyway, the point of all this garble is that I thought it downright hilarious reading today that there is some girl at London School of Economics studying internet memes (Lolcats! Yes, Lolcats! and Failblog!) for her master's thesis. Fantastic. This is going to sound so urban-affected, but I can't wait to go to grad school one day and get obsessed about something really obscure.

Sorry for the scattered Kerouac-ian post that might not even comprise a coherent argument tomorrow. I'm trying to be better about my word choice anxiety. Starting with this sentence's immediate predecessor, which I won't change even though it's killing me ("I'm trying to be better..."?? -what the hell?!). OK.