Humor - John Paul II HS

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Humor - John Paul II HS

Humorous Interpretation

Finding the path to being funny


Contents

What is Funny

Types of Comedy

Developing your piece

Physicality

Voice


WHAT IS FUNNY


What is Funny

Based on the individual

• Men tend to like physical

• Women tend to like verbal

What type of humor is it

• Comedic performance

• Written

• Opening a funny door or opening a

door funny


But these are the basics

Comedy is Truth

• Captures a moment

• Contains an element of simple truth

Comedy is Unexpected

• Expect one thing but another occurs.

• Setup is truthful and then comes the twist

Comedy is Expected

• We see it coming, but we don’t when or how it will occur

Comedy is familiar

• known for eternity and yet we are hearing it now out loud

for the first time

Comedy is unfamiliar

• Incongruity -- illogical, out of place surprise.

• Doing Comedy


Revolves around normal people

Comedy original meaning

• dramatic play that was the opposite of

tragedy.

Tragedy = big important characters

(usually falling from grace).

Comedy= little people moving up in the

world and would feature a happier

ending.


Literary circles

High comedy

• Intellectual wit

• Clever characterizations

• Complex situations.

• (Oscar Wilde, Noel Coward, Sex and the

City)

Low comedy

• Coarse language

• Slapstick and farce.

• (Monty Python, Keystone Cops, My Name is

Earl)


STYLE OF COMEDY


Types of Comedy

Slapstick

Parody

Satire

Spoof

Irony

Dry Humor

Sarcasm

Farce

Black Comedy

Surrealism


Types of Approaches

Basic Approaches: What is in charge

• Dry Humor

• Physical Humor


Dry Humor

Word Oriented

• Not "begging" for a laugh

• Offering a simple observation or other statement

that proves to be funny

• Requires a moment's thought or knowledge

beyond

• “Deadpan” humor is delivered like a straight line

• The beat or pause is important

Dry Humor


Physical Humor

Action Oriented

• You can get the joke without language

• Examples

• Slapstick

• Farce

– More open, exaggerated (Rowan Atkinson, Mel Brooks and Jackie

Gleason)

– Difficult form -- relies on split second timing and finely honed

characterizations to get the laughs.

– break neck pace

– improbable situations (can use puns and verbal wit)

– highly exaggerated characters and physical buffoonery

– basis of many popular sitcoms.

• Clowning/Mime

– Exaggerated physical

Physical comedy

More Physical comedy


Comic Techniques



The Words or Comedic Situations

• Parody: Young Frankenstein

• Spoof: Talladega Nights

• Black Comedy: Harold and Maude; Juno

• Pun and wordplay: A Fish Called Wanda

• Satire: Waiting for Guffman

• Double entendre: Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story

• Mock epic and travesty: Monty Python and the Holy Grail

• Irony: Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the

Bomb

The Action or Visual

• Farce: Ace Ventura Pet Detective

• Sarcasm: Role Models

• Misunderstanding: Home Alone

• Characteristic swap: Freaky Fridays

• The infectious wisdom of the fool: Being There

• The flawed plan: The Hangover

• The parallel reality: Stranger than Fiction


DEVELOPING YOUR PIECE


Where do you start

Select the Right Piece for you

• Suits your sense of humor

• Plays to your strengths

Cut to consider

• Strong beginning, middle and end

• Everything is understood

• Can be physically portrayed

• Can be understood (not too much action or to

many characters)

• It is still funny


Find out about your characters

One at a time

Everything in the script about each

Answer these questions

• Who am I

• Where am I

• When am I there

• What am I doing

• Why am I doing it

• With who am I talking


Humorous Interpretation

Character

Finding the path to being funny


Description

Physical

• Tall, thin, blonde, brunette, etc.

• How old

• What quirks

• What would you wear

• Will tell you how you move

Personality

• Funny, boring, sarcastic, aggressive, shy,

judgmental, sweet, friendly, egotistic, etc.

• Determines things like tone and voice

• Tells you where the emphasis will be


Environmental factors: Where and When

Region

• Experiences

• Dialects

Small town or big city

• Attitudes

Climate

• Physicality

Time – Period and time of year

• Customs

• Knowledge


Economics

• Status

Politics

• Attitudes

Social Life

• Geek

• Freak

What Forms Attitudes

Now and as a child

• Life of the Party and Loner

Religion


What do I want

Objectives

• Overall – Super Objective

• Specific to another person (change another person)

In that moment - what am I doing What is

my objective/intent

• What is my attitude How do I go about getting my

objective:

• What is my relationship to the people I'm speaking to/of

• Where am I When is this happening (century, era,

season, time of day)

• Small objectives that make you act

– What happened right before this moment What

happens right after this moment

• Express them as Action verbs


Obstacles

What is keeping me from getting what I want

• Time

• Ability

• Perceptions

• Feelings

What will I do to get what I want

Personalize these things


The Arc

Where do the characters start

How does the action develop

How does the story end


Physicality

Focal Points

Posture

Mannerisms

Gestures

Facial Expressions


Focal Points

Distinct for Each Character

• At angles

• Not too far apart

• Consistent

Try not to be either full on or full profile

Show height

Trick to determining

• Use partner

• Tape on the wall


3 most important Physical Items

How you

• Walk

• Hold your upper body

• Hold your head


Stance and Walk

The Feet and Legs

• Look at feet and knees to create stance

Walk

• Legs together - modest

• Legs Rolling and body rolling in – age, weight

• Stride Apart (e.g. stretched out) – larger, powerful

• Toes in or out, foot angled

• How you distribute weight on feet (forward, backward,

sideways)

• Knees normal, locked, flexed

• Weight- heavy or light

• Time- quick or slow

• Flow- continuous, arrested or bound


Posture

Torso and Shoulders

• Hips

• Back

• On side

• Forward

• Different leads

• Shoulders

• Back - stiff

• Forward – elderly, weak

• Normal

Head and Neck

• Chin – up, down, normal

• Neck – bent, down, forward, cocked


Gestures

Other Physicality

• Everyone holds their hands differently and

consistently – think speed, who broad, and type

Face

• Touching, slightly rubbing nose – doubt, lying

• Patting/fondling hair – nervousness

• Pulling or tugging at ear – indecision

• All features – eyes, mouth, eye brows, nose

• Facial Expressions

• There are 50 or so different types of smiles

• Look - Direct (e.g. straight) or Indirect (e.g.

twisted)

• Facial Video


Weight

Weight and Emotion

• The GREATER the emotional weight...the

GREATER the physical weight.

• An ANGRY walk should be forceful and have

more weight.

• A SAD or DEPRESSED walk will display more

weight but be more sluggish and seem closer

to the ground.

• HAPPY or JOYOUS walk the character will

seem lighter and his movements freer and

further from the ground.


Types of Walks

THRUSTING

FLOATING

PUSHING

SHUFFLING

GLIDING

BOUNCING

WADDLING


Habits and Tics

Habits and Tics

• Most people have habits or tics that they're

not even aware of.

• Regularly twirls a ring,

• Bites their fingernails

• Twirls and sucks on their hair

Impairments

• A limp

• A crooked hand

• A hip that pops out of joint

• Weak eyesight


DEVELOP CHARACTER

VOICES


Voice Work

Content is “Thinking and Feeling”

Content

•Audience

•Back Story

•Character

•Desires

•Energy

•Focus

•Gamble

Who are they

What do they do

How do they do it

Form

•Pitch

•Pitch

Characteristic

•Tempo

•Rhythm

•Placement

Mouth Work

Form is “the Sound of the Voice”


Finding your Voice

Vertical Pitch

Pitch Characteristics

Tempo & Rhythm

Pitch Higher

or lower than

yours

Top of Head (Tiny)

Front of mouth

(crisp)

Slow

Characteristics

Gravelly

Husky

Tempo

Faster or

slower

Rhythm

Syncopated

Plodding

Loping

Placement

Nasal Back

of Throat

Normal

Eyes (bright)

Under tongue

(sloppy)

Fast



Throat (raspy) Nose (nasally) Moderate

Chest (booming)

Stomach (low)

Loose cheeks

(mushy)

Back of Throat

(breathy)

Smooth

Staccato

Mouth Work

Accent Lisp

Tight Lips

Diaphragm (strong)

Jaws (tight)

Melodic

Overlay Mouth work and Dialects


Voices

Voices

Family Guy


Making It Funny

Put it Together

One Piece at a Time

Understand the type of Comedy

Develop Distinct Voices

HI

Understand Where

the Funny Is

Develop Distinct Physicality

Analyze the Script and Characters


Humorous Interp Interpretated

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