Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Favorite Comedy Moments

Sometimes I think Mindy Kaling and I could be buddies. In my mind, I leave some funny on-point messages on her blog and she eventually says 'haha. oh man. we should be best friends!" and I casually reply two days later "oh what? yeah. that'd be fun or whatever."

Its not a big leap to think this could blossom - we both have a true love for the excellent, Steve Martin

And I felt oddly proud of her when I found out she got a new show, "The Mindy Project" next season on FOX (I had hoped she would be one of the lucky few with a life boat, emerging from the Titanic that "The Office" has turned into). Even though it looks a bit like a romantic comedy in the trailer, I'll watch it with the loyalty of a creepy fan true friend.

Her book "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?" is a quick, clever read. Similar to Tina Fey's "Bossy Pants" and it cemented my friend crush on Mindy. In one part she lists her favorite comedy moments and I immediately youTubed them all - laughed my face off and began thinking of my own. (p.s. this one of hers, where Liz Lemon cries out of her mouth, is amazing)

I excluded stand-up and didn't do much research (because if you think too hard you'll go crazy), and so without further ado, here is my TOP 5 of COMEDY:

Michael Cera singing "These Eyes" from the movie "Superbad". There is something about his ability to master awkward that has me in tears. It could have been so cliche - straight laced high school kid accidently trapped in a crazy party with drugs - but Cera pulls it off so well.

Alec Baldwin during a therapy session with Tracy Morgan on "30 Rock". This is one of my favorite shows. I always considered Baldwin's character, Jack, to be 'supportive' and background. This scene forever changed that - Alec Baldwin became a genius here and then I realized that everyone on this show is pure gold.

Peter Griffin and a bullfrog on "Family Guy". I think what I love about this show is that they perfected the kind of laugh that you get from making the audience have no other choice but to eventually laugh - they extend the joke sooooo long you just have to go with it - you're that uncomfortable. I think its smart, others might call it really really stupid.

Gene Wilder and Peter Boyle dancing to "Puttin' on the Ritz" from "Young Frankenstein". I'm at a loss for which classic movie to include in my Top 5. I think this one is quoted more than any other around my family's holiday table ("Put the candle back") and I think this scene is the one that rises to the top. It's hilarious simply because of the idea - that you have Frankenstein tap dance. It's physical comedy with out being slapstick or over kill. Then there's the spot on delivery. And after you see it, you never hear the song in the same way again.

The Chicken Dance from "Arrested Development". One great aspect of comedy is the pay off. This clip is a compilation because the way Arrested Development worked at its best was by giving you a subtle joke over and over again though out the seasons then hitting you big in the end. The scene with all the family members around the table making horrible chicken noises would be really funny standing alone. Ah, but having them sneak in the bad imitations one by one - here and there - over several season - made that moment when it crescendos all the more amazing.

Now that's 5 but I haven't mentioned anything from Dumb and Dumber or National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation or Tommy Boy or Caddyshack and Will Ferrell - he should be there somewhere. This is wonderfully difficult!

And now I would really really love to know what are some moments in comedy that you have adored. Ones that you have watched over and over - have quoted - have made that indelible impression on you. Then I want to watch them and brighten my day!


  1. The classics are the best (I LOVE that bit from Young Frankenstein). One scene that makes me laugh-til-I-cry is in Spinal Tap when Derek is stuck in the pod during the concert (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ugQlzv6c5mY). Great post, this brightened my day too :)

    1. haha, it's been so long since I've seen that! I feel like it blazed the way for the deadpan documentary type humor. its so good!

  2. I think all of mine might be from Arrested Development. I still giggle like a school girl whenever I think of Tobias' business cards as an Analrapist. Tee hee.

    1. I also love Tobias' physical comedy - when he awkwardly rolls onto the stage. When he falls into a coffee table doing the Mary Poppins with an umbrella. When he cries in the shower in his jorts. Oh man that show kills me!

  3. I could make a top 100 just out of Will Ferrell bits. It seems a little played out, but the funeral scene in Old School makes me cry every time. Pretty much any scene in Anchorman. SNL when he does the Harry Caray secrets of the universe show. Or, I wish there was a better video of this on the web: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F61UyBWg_tk


    1. hahahaha! Neil and I watched that one together and cracked up! it's been so long since I've seen it I completely forgot. "What kind of wood is that?!" I love his skits when he repeats a line over and over in angst like "I drive a dodge stratus!" (in fact I love all his stuff)

      And somehow I missed tapping into the deep vein of "Always Sunny in Philadelphia" (Frank naked in the couch, Sweet Dee as "crazy Paddy" getting hit with a ball, Charlie and Dee dry heaving as they do stand-up).

      And Neil's favorite is in South Park - when Cartman is about to get beat up by a girl so he needs detention quick - so he poops on Mr Garrisons desk. (youtube it, its great)

      well jeez. i could discuss this all day!