This and intelligence. I don’t know if our current consumers of comedy are more intelligent, but it seems to me as if the really blazing new comedians getting absorbed into the new culture are designing shows that require a little more attention and investment than some generations of comedians have.
I’m really glad that you wrote the second half of your story, there. I was already composing my frustrated, “the argument isn’t that dualistic. Stop oversimplifying it,” ranttity.
That’s my combination rant and ditty. I made up the word before writing it down.
I’m glad, instead, to say that I agree. Ain’t sure about everyone else in the world, but everyone I know in person has some of the cuttingest, quickest, liveliest humor. We laugh all the time.
We tend to shut down over anything that makes us say, “Not cool, dude.”
Which isn’t, these days, where we go, too much. We, in fact, forgive an awful lot of what we view as insensitivity, recognizing that’s how certain people are raised and not everyone’s got empathy with everyone. We recognize that we certainly haven’t.
Side note, before my final point: One funny thing about these “all them Millennials” arguments that keep getting roused about the intersphere is that we’re grownups now. Maybe we have an air of entitlement, maybe we’re self-absorbed, maybe we’re hardly aware, but we are grownups. We can both read and form cogent opinions. We do argue with the “Millennials are the bane of humanity” views, it is so, and when we do we make relatively small arguments. Do not mistake our quietness for submissiveness. We’re not some passive and ignorant set of children. Most of us choose not to be bothered with bothering with “Millennials: Ruining the world for the rest of us” rhetoric because we recognize the smallness of the issue. Doesn’t matter how fucked up anyone says our generation is, we still have to clean up the world for ourselves. I think mos’ of my peers recognize the pointlessness of convincing people we’re an okay bunch, by and large. We’ve got larger issues on our plate.
Anywho, I think that you’re spot on suggesting that the new, subversive wave of comedians will demonstrate such insidious powers as emotional sensitivity and vulnerability.
I’d opine that they’ll also demonstrate a couple other characteristics: intelligence and subtlety. I’ve watched a bunch of comedy from lots of epochs, and it seems to me as if there are fewer “jokes” being told these days. We’re more interested in storytellers and commentators. We’re also more likely to get behind comedians with genuine speaking skills.
I think that the dudes over in the British Isles have been onto this for a little longer than we have, on this side of the big pond thingy.
Here’s comedians I love, an’ they’re doin’ like what you’re saying, sort of, with the large cultural commentary and the emotional depth, except also like what I’m sayin’, with the subtlty and speaking skills and that:
Constantly using his transvestitism and dyslexia as a source of humor; talks about history.
Irish, prematurely curmudgeonly, talks about aging and politics, literacy, requires actual attention to “get.” You could almost describe him as gentlemanly.
Less literate, less polite, Dylan Moran.
Cute and silly, talks about culture, constantly distracting himself and ad-libbing; takes two hours to fail to get to the point of the story he started at the beginning.
Welsh, sort of the opposite of Ross Noble: takes two hours to tell one story, never tells a joke, creates lots of humor anyhow.
Creates basically a whole show out of audience interaction. Also Irish…ish.