Last weekend, I got into a discussion over how stand up comedy has changed over the years. One of the top new comedians is Dane Cook and, if you’ve heard him, you kknow why! One thing that has always struck me is howdifferent comedians can do such different things, yet all are funny. Yet, if Margaret Cho tried to do Steve Martin’s comedy, she’d sound like an idiot. And if Steve Martin tried to do Mitch Headberg’s comedy, then HE’d sound like an idiot. Alas, I digress…other than maybe with the parting idea that you can only do what YOU can do-not what everyone else does.
Anywho, back to Dane Cook. The discussion revolved around how back in the 70s, Richard Pryor and the comedians of the day told jokes. Well, according to a NY Times article a few years ago, folks, the joke is dead. No one in their right mind walks around telling knock knock jokes or “So, a rabbi, a priest and a midget walk into a bar” jokes. Now, it seems, Dane Cook has tapped into something most all of us can relate to: observing ourselves, our own eccentricitiesand the oddities of human life. One of the folks I was discussing this with asked…how long can that last? Richard Pryor, while still funny, well, his style of comedy just isn’t the “in” thing any more. Will the same happen to Dane Cook’s brand of comedy? Well, Dane Cook will surely fade away after a while, but that observational comedy won’t, I don’t think. Why? Because we humans are very, very strange creatures. When someone breaks down our behaviors and then points them out, we begin to see just how goofy we are.