Log On For Laughs: Comedy on the Web is no joking matter
Humor on the internet is a vqwweihxcklgnxcv … oops, I dozed off there for a sec and my forehead hit the keyboard. Just joshing! But you get my drift. When it comes to comedy, the Web has a snooze-inducing reputation — just a bunch of jokes about blonds, boobs, and Captain Picard.
And believe me, it’s got those in spades. But browse long enough among the sea of comedy sites (1,816 Yahoo! hits for ”humor”), and you’re bound to find chuckle-worthy stuff. In fact, the beauty of the Web is that there’s a punchline for every taste — Abbott & Costello transcripts, texts of Swedish stand-up comedy, clips of Dennis Miller, Dilbert cartoons, and Marv Albert jokes. Herewith, EW doles out some awards.
— THE BLACK TURTLENECK PRIZE to the Un-Cabaret On-Line (http://www.uncabaret.com). A trove of audio and video clips from L.A.’s alternative-comedy nightclub, where airplane jokes are banned and Janeane Garofalo is a goddess. (”Is it normal when you’re having sex with someone that you want to punch them in the face?” she asks.) Also check out Stella Online (http://www.stella online.com), New York’s version.
— THE KARL MARX STATUETTE FOR CAPITALISM GONE HORRIBLY AWRY to Galla-Gear (gallaghersmash.com/catalog.html). Get your Gallagher ponchos, Gallagher T-shirts, Gallagher caps! Watch out, J. Crew, America’s favorite fruit-smashing comedian now has his own line of clothing.
— THE STARBUCKS UBIQUITY TROPHY to Chris Rock (www. hbo.com/chrisrock). The comedian/author/budding movie star/Emmy darling has an amusing new website pumping his HBO talk show. Check out the Dorf on Golf satire called Dorf on Crack — ”the wackiest substance abuser you’ll ever see!”
— THE H.L. MENCKEN MEDAL to Tony Kornheiser (www. geocities.com/Athens/1603/korn.html). Everyone knows that Dave Barry need only type the word booger to send millions of nerds into snorting fits (check out http://www.herald.com/tropic/barry). But don’t overlook Kornheiser, a wry Washington Post columnist who explains, for instance, that ”everything bad is traceable to El Niño,” including CBS sitcom George and Leo.
— A GOLD-PLATED SILICON CHIP to Randomized Punchlines (most can be found at www. yahoo.com/Entertainment/Humor_Jokes_and_Fun/ Randomized_Things/). Band-O-Matic makes random band names like Soy Babies; Abuse-O-Tron comes up with random insults. And so on. It’s not always Oscar Wilde, but at least these tidbits are novel, unique-to-the-Internet comedy.
— THE PARKER BROTHERS PLAQUE FOR BEST GAME to Stand-Up Comedy Bingo (http://www.fadetoblack.com/bingo.htm). Finally, a way to watch those wince-inducing comedians on cable. Click here and get a bingo board filled not with numbers but with comedy clichés — a Robert De Niro impression, a joke about 7-Eleven workers, etc. Then flip on A&E’s Evening at the Improv and race your friends to check off the squares.
— THE WAHOO, NEB., CUP FOR FUNNIEST LIST to How to Be Annoying (http://www.math.fau.edu/klotzbach/amusing/annoying.htm). Most of these allegedly humorous Internet lists are as funny as an Arnold Schwarzenegger comedy. (A list of lists can be found at http://www.cs.bgu.ac.il/~davidcha/Humor/index.html.) This one, though, is actually amusing. Suggestions include naming your dog Dog and specifying that your drive-through order is ”to go.”