Hey all, as a local improv comic in the Portland area, doing it over a year now and actually some how making a tiny bit of money doing it (about a few bucks a show, I still have a a day job with the government) I wanted to know if that is something y’all enjoy going out to in your local areas improv shows, or if you can’t stand it or are otherwise indifferent to it. GB has always had an improv spirit, I feel, with the humor being off the cuff even if it’s not directly improv comedy. Thoughts?
Giant Bomb uses “Yes, And” as a common punchline. So, is improv comedy funny?
As someone who watches both Smosh and Dropout, I gotta say I like improv in various iterations and modes. Although only one GB staff member has been a comedian by training, everyone tends to have good comedic timing, an appreciation of the chaos that comes with live performance, and entertaining chemistry. I don't necessarily think any GB member would be good at improv on a stage in front of an audience who's yelling out prompts. But when it comes to the environment they work in (playing video games live with other people) I think they do a pretty good job.
I have never attended, and never will attend, an improv show. I have watched a lot of Who's Line, Would I Lie To You, Mock The Week. Blame Society Films is one of my favourite Youtube channels. I even try to be spontaneous an improvisational in my own day to day humour.
Which is to say, my answer to the poll is "sometimes". I find having a screen between me and the improv makes it far less cringe-worthy, and I vastly prefer it when the improv comes from prompts over audience suggestions.
Objectively I guess it's funnier than sarcasm and pun.
Wait, when has Giant Bomb made fun of "Yes, and"? The only times I remember hearing them mention it have been generally positive and those were back when Austin was on the East team.
@kcin: I'm in the same boat. Jesus fuck I still remember going to see an improv group that just flat out constantly ignored the audience when asking for audience prompts and their act was mostly them having fun with themselves while the crowd was dead silent.
Now the live act type that really makes me cringe are comedy quartet choirs.
@retris: it’s not that they mock it, it’s just that they say it so often, and other than in comedy podcasts I don’t hear the term “yes, and” nearly as much as a do on GB.
As a practitioner of Improv, I can confirm that bad Improv is the worst shit on earth, and it can strike at any moment. Trust me when I say the performers feel worse than the audience when that happens. Hell, I’ve had some shows where it was one weak link, often the guy that can’t stop screaming the whole show, killing anything the rest of us were trying to do, and all we can do is slowly die on stage.
Since I got picky about who I perform with, it’s a lot more common to have great sets, at least for the modest audiences my theater draws.
Improv is fine. It's just unfortunate when someone doesn't recognize when the horse is beyond beaten dead and there is no steam left in a joke. I listen to a lot of Dollop, and those guys are hilarious, but sometimes they "Yes, and" well past the point of humor and I sometimes fast forward past those parts.
It's just the nature of the beast, though. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't and ya just gotta move on.
I've never seen it live, but Hey Riddle Riddle is one of my favorite podcasts. Although, the improv scenes are my least favorite part.
Re: beating dead horses, I'm of the opinion that comedy is cyclical in that if a funny joke becomes unfunny, the more you keep telling it, the more likely it is to become funny again.
One of my favourite improv groups is Drawfee, and it's actually because one of the four of them will frequently "yes, but actually no" to pretty much anything. It adds a level of nuance to the improv that actually works, especially when the "yes, but actually no" is followed up with something that is just seriously unfunny, to the point where the irony of it makes it hilarious. That's just me, contrarian humour is probably my favourite kind.
Well, this was all a ruse to promote my improv teams next big show in Portland, Oregon this Friday at Curious Comedy Theater. The show is called Friday Night Fights, it's at 9:30pm, and the audience votes for the team they liked best. My team is The Placeholders. Show up if you can, wear a giant bomb shirt and I'll probably point and acknowledge you after the show.
Hope this doesn't get me banned. Dunno the rules for promoting live events in the forums.
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