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Author Topic: AmeriPol thread  (Read 542544 times)

Urist McScoopbeard

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21645 on: June 13, 2018, 04:01:03 pm »

Curious as to what Bay12ers think/are feeling about this: (sorry, completely departure from discussion at hand)

Part Un:

I went to a Dave Chapelle + Jon Stewart + Michael Che (as the opener) comedy show last night and while both Dave (ofc) and Michael were pretty hilarious, Jon Stewart was, imo, awful. I mean... he just bashed Trump for 45 minutes. There weren't even jokes really, he was just recounting confrontations with him (like the whole twitter debacle). Now, realistically, I'm a pretty moderate guy, I didn't vote, and most of the political hatred has gone over my head--I've been able to just silently slip away from all the debates and rage between parties. But idk, this bothers me. Not so much the actual bashing of Trump, because there is a lot to legitimately say about his administration and his penchant for the controversial, but the fact that people aren't even trying to really say anything that hasn't already been said is, idk, different?

Every week I hear the same jokes, the same parodies, the same impressions--it's tiring. Do people really think Trump is THAT funny? I mean, granted, at first it was SO outlandish as to compel discourse, but now it's just become this tired charade. I can't seem to really find a reason why, of all things, people find it --funny--??? The two opinions I've heard concerning this are either, "Trump is terrible and deserves as much and any abuse we can give him--he has ruined my life" and "It's completely inappropriate and outrageous to make fun of the President. He's our quarterback, and criticizing him makes us look bad". Neither of which make any sense to me. On one hand, people's day to day lives haven't really changed all that much. On the other hand, he's enacted a lot of policies which probably are NOT in the best interest of the American public (I think, I don't really know) and the only meaningful commentary has to be public in some way.

Where it all falls apart for me, is that, from what I have seen, there is no actual political satire or social commentary taking place. It's so blunt, so on the nose, it's all lost it's impact and/or poignancy. (In contrast to Jon, Dave actually had a lot of good, sad bits that made you think about American society). Do people really hate him so much that you can say ANYTHING about him and it becomes funny, like some sort of schoolyard rivalry?

Part Deux:

That leads me to my next point, which bothers me even more--and way more personally. The seemingly prevailing opinion that it is the duty of American artists to criticize the establishment, to craft some kind of commentary in all their work that speaks to how things could be, in a very mundane and realistic way. I don't know if many people feel this way, but in my circles I hear it all time. If anything, I think that when people are so openly blunt about Trump, but disguise it as some kind of comedy or serious storytelling it really ruins the work. Whatever it is. America has lost it's subtly. I'm all for criticism, but it's just not made productively any more--it's like people have given up?

I'm not quite sure I'm adequately unpacking this feeling, but when a story or a picture or a joke directly attacks someone, even someone detestable, it just loses all it's weight. It's a quick laugh, I'm not going to go home and think about. (Shit, I've already forgotten half of Jon's stuff.) Some people might not care about this happening at all, but for me, when politics start influence the way you tell stories, how you communicate emotion--in a way that really drains a lot of... authority of it--idk, it cheapens a lot of entertainment, a lot of which ends up being a lot more formative to people (of any age, on a variety of thoughts) than just derisive escapism.

As someone who has always placed a lot of importance on making people laugh and sharing moments through dialogue/storytelling/conversation, it seems crazy to me that people expect or even think that it's a great idea to skip the humanity of storytelling to get your point across.

IDK, I'm sure I have some more cohesive thoughts about it all rolling around in my head, but this is the best I can write done presently.
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SalmonGod

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21646 on: June 13, 2018, 04:40:44 pm »

1.  Many people's day-to-day lives have changed quite a bit, and that influence on real life experiences will likely continue to expand.

2.  Jon Stewart does often abandon wit.  He's just ok at what he does, imo.  The humor is supposed to be in the perceived audacity of how far reality is removed from reason, according to the opinions of the target audience.  The repetitiveness of it is just a coping mechanism.  It does get old.  But it's essentially the same thing as co-workers repeating the same half-humor snarks about problems with their office environment to each other every day at the printer/water cooler, but at the cultural scope of a nation instead of an office.  It's just venting.  When people live with something that bothers them, they'll keep venting until it goes away.  It's not enlightened behavior, but it's human.
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Max™

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21647 on: June 13, 2018, 04:44:02 pm »

Texas negotiated the "split into 5 states" clause as a condition of joining the Union.  So there's a chance that could be legal.

It would probably destroy the Republican party however.  Right now Texas has 2 red senators and a million house of reps people.  If they split it, it would have 2-4* blue senators, 4-6 red senators, and a million blue house of reps people.  Because if Houston and the surrounding area becomes its own state, there's no way to gerrymander that where it isn't a democratic stronghold.  And it would be by far the most populous of the proposed states.  For all intents and purposes invoking that clause would turn Texas purple, which would be a political disaster for Republicans (akin to California going purple for democrats).

*IIRC each of the prospective states is based on one of the 5 largest cities in Texas, and Austin is at the center with a tiny state.  From what I've heard of Austin its shifting either purple or blue due to people moving in from California (and having been left of Texas in general for a while).
I'm from Dallas and had no idea there were republican types in Texas until I left. It was a forward thinking liberal land as far as I knew.
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Folly

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21648 on: June 13, 2018, 04:54:24 pm »

Jon Stewart has never been very funny. But without him, we get Trevor Noah, who is just...the worst.
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Max™

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21649 on: June 13, 2018, 04:57:37 pm »

I liked Noah, I mean, I'm biased, he's not an old white guy because fuck them they're dangerous, but he was fun.
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Il Palazzo

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21650 on: June 13, 2018, 05:04:47 pm »

Jon Stewart has never been very funny. But without him, we get Trevor Noah, who is just...the worst.
Colour me curious. I need some funny American pseudo-news shows to distract me from the local realities.
Which late show hosts are very funny then? I get that in your opinion they're all funnier than Noah, but which are funnier than Stewart?
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MrRoboto75

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21651 on: June 13, 2018, 05:08:01 pm »

Which late show hosts are very funny then?

Well, none.
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Il Palazzo

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21652 on: June 13, 2018, 05:11:07 pm »

Which late show hosts are very funny then?

Well, none.
That only tells me you either don't have a sense of humour, or are offended by the audacity of their jokes.
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Not good with names

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21653 on: June 13, 2018, 05:13:58 pm »

With Trump, I think it's because he's been made fun of for 40 years.  There's just very little that hasn't been said, and what we got left is pretty stale.  The problem with the comedy of Trump running a future Dystopia is that Back to the Future Part II and a fair number of other movies have already made the joke.  But specifically, Jon Stewart has been like that since at least the rally to restore sanity, where his comedy act became less an act and more a lecture (Which come to think of it, happens to a lot of older, famous comics.)  So yeah, that's sort of a thing where if you hadn't seen the daily show in it's final years you might be expecting something... funny.  (And I really hate Trump)

As for in general, comedy needs conflict. So it's likely that yeah, if you got beef with the powers that be, you're going to express it, that's mostly the history of comedy and satire.  It's not like Duck Soup presented a plan for world peace (Well, maybe it involved something untoward with Mrs. DuMont), but hey it still holds up.

Edit: several replies while I composed this.  I will say Jon Stewart was actually funny at one point.
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Urist McScoopbeard

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21654 on: June 13, 2018, 05:14:36 pm »

Colbert is/was pretty funny and I usually enjoy John Oliver (if you're actually looking for something).

EDIT: Also, good answers peeps, thanks for talkin.
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MrRoboto75

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21655 on: June 13, 2018, 05:50:25 pm »

Which late show hosts are very funny then?

Well, none.
That only tells me you either don't have a sense of humour, or are offended by the audacity of their jokes.

look at the stupid thing republacans/democrats are doing now

*laugh track*
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Folly

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21656 on: June 13, 2018, 05:51:25 pm »

I second John Oliver. And Colbert back on the Colbert Report; I honestly haven't watched him since he changed networks.
I'm also a fan of Jordan Klepper's recent work on The Opposition.
Paul Tompkins was very amusing on 'No, You Shut Up', but sadly that ended a couple years ago.
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Gentlefish

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21657 on: June 13, 2018, 06:27:18 pm »

Can I third Oliver?

And of course it’s “look at the party in power and their shitty hijinks” because that’s an accurate portrayal of America as a whole especially when it comes to pseudo news

Max™

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21658 on: June 13, 2018, 07:03:55 pm »

It's difficult to work in a field involving political parody when even making the joke about how politics is parody feels passe at this point.
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PTTG??

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Re: AmeriPol thread
« Reply #21659 on: June 13, 2018, 08:02:57 pm »

Satire died when Trump actually put an global warming denialist in charge of the EPA. But, why blame satirists for their field being rendered obsolete? And is it really worth considering at all, instead of the actual things the conservatives are doing?

That last statement is my general response to a lot of criticism of the left. From SJWs to fractionalism to offending moderates to insufficiently offending moderates, these are all not really important issues compared to influence peddling, regulatory capture, profiteering and nepotism, racism and open support of domestic terrorists.
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