Reg Varney dies

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jno | 20:46 Sun 16th Nov 2008 | News
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First person in the world to take cash out of an ATM m


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I must agree with you , adult yes , adult white big yes
Comedy dates mroe than any other art form, but there are certain geniuses who are timeless.

Les Dawson certainly traded on the mother-in-law jokes, but he was much more than that. Together with Ronnie Barker, Bob Monkhouse and Barry Cryer, he was a terrific wordsmith.

This is why his comedy will always be well regarded.

Laurel & Hardy are another exception. Their comedy strangely hasn't dated, but very few people now are fans of Buster Keaton, Fatty Arbuckle or even the (in my opinion) great Harold Lloyd.

This is the difference between comedians and comedy geniuses.

Incidentally, Bernard Manning absolutely couldn't hold a candle to Chris Rock. He too is a comedy genius. Manning was a minnow.
Laurel & Hardy are another exception. Their comedy strangely hasn't dated, but very few people now are fans of Buster Keaton, Fatty Arbuckle or even the (in my opinion) great Harold Lloyd.

This is the difference between comedians and comedy geniuses.

no Will Hay ?
Leg eng, you doth assume. The word I use is stag, it's your mind.
PS Not being a troll are we.
Bernard Manning would wipe the floor with Chris Rock.
Incedentally, why is it accetable for Rock to use the N word in his act when Manning was vilified by some for doing so?
Chris Rock has been mentioned .
There is a case in point. to my post above .

As for 'comedy dramas' not being funny .
Well , I cant think of a recent comedy drama - perhaps someone can jog my memory .

However , ' Minder' , in my humble opinion was hilarious
Nothing to match it since .
I think Buster Keaton stands the test of time really well - far better than Charlie Chaplin, in my opinion.

Ronnie Barker is rightly lauded as a comedy great. He got some stinking reviews in his time though. I'm sure in his heyday people would scoff if you compared him to the all-time greats. Same with Reg Varney. That's the warm glowing warming glow of hindsight.

Expect the same to happen in 20 years to people like Ricky Gervais, Steve Coogan, Peter Kay and the like.

He's another one who used to crack me up when I was younger, but again - his comedy has gone out of fashion...not to say it won't come back...

...but it's very dated, whereas if you look at the classic 40s/50s comedies from Ealing, especially The Ladykillers, Passport To Pimlico and Kind Hearts & Coronets - they have aged extremely well.

I went to an NFT screening of KH&C a few months back and the place was packed...not just with oldies, but people in their 20s and 30s.

I wouldn't be so sure of Will Hay still attracting such a large cross section of ages.
sp1418 must agree about the comedies from Ealing , i think people will still enjoy them for many years to come. i have just purchased some of the old Will Hay films

Good grief...must every post centre on race???

Bernard Manning was exceptional at hearing jokes, remembering them and then saying them himself. It's harder than you might think. And the old-school comics (Frank Carson, Mike Reid, Roy Walker etc) have a gift for it. Hats off to them.

Modern, 'alternative' comedians (Chris Rock, Dara O'Briein, Jack Dee, you name them) actually write the comedy they deliver.

It's a matter of opinion which requires most talent.
sp Just wondering, that's all.
I also liked Old Mother Riley and The Marx Brothers,

Comedy like music is a generational thing. We tend to like the comedy and music that are contemporary when we are growing up. Later we might discover artists from earlier than our initial introduction. We also take our first encounter with music and comedy and use them as bench marks for new and subsequent artist who come along.

Some people can easily accept the new stuff while others don't really move on at all.

Genius is very subjective. People who claim certain entertainers are 'timeless' are usually from the time when that material was contemporary, so for example, someone in their late forties will probably say the Rolling Stones are geniuses and that Monty Python are 'timeless', but ask a typical 14 year old and they will find it dated and not funny.

I personally find observation comedy funnier than 'jokes' per se.

This is why I never really liked stand up comedians (apart from Mr Dawson).
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for me Laurel and Hardy are a classic example of 'only funny the first time'. I'd seen most of their films by the time I was 10 (they actually used to show them in cinemas!) and I was already aware of how much they repeated themselves. Chaplin and Keaton were just the opposite: endlessly inventive. When they film 'On the Buses in Rio' (or whatever) the object is to repeat the same old routines in a new surrounding. But when a great comic like Keaton acquires a ship (in 'The Navigator') his aim is to see what new gags he can come up with.

Chaplin went out of style as the demographic he appealed to - poor first-generation immigrants in many cases - dwindled. And he and Keaton didn't really recover from the introduction of sound, whereas L&H did, so perhaps that's why they are better remembered. (Though Chaplin's 'M Verdoux' is a startlingly original film that upset many people after WW2).

Harold Lloyd's good too. I own all Chaplin and Keaton's films and Lloyd's next on my list.

Good post.

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