Attention Whoring

Self Obsession (pt. 2)

Good job Rhett, making me not seem as pathetically self obsessive. Bad job, Lara. Decent job, Ben.

Consent Doesn’t Come in the Form of Silence: or A Deeply Veiled Lesson in Statistics

Grade: A-

This is the essence of the multi-layered meaning. At first glance this is simply a sketch testing the limits of how many times one can say rape on stage. As you look deeper you realize that it is really an attempt to interpret a semantic mathematical argument on stage (whether or not an object contained within another can be categorized as “being that object” or whether the more specific “being part of that object” is more appropriate). On further reflection we can hopefully recognize that this sketch is truly about both of those things and none of those things. This sketch is about emotion and logic, and the symbiotic relationship between the two.

Comedy is a golden tool of expression because in comedy, more than in other forms of art, the audience is a part of the performance, as there is a give and take of laughter throughout the piece. The use of the concept of rape and date-rape is meant to play on the audience’s emotions and it does so well as the audience feels uncomfortable laughing until one of their own laughs (2:44). Lara’s character therefore is emotion, while the other three in their robotic sameness represent logic. Logic, as always, presents the better argument, but we also see that if we only pay attention to logic than emotion feels… well… raped, and that doesn’t feel good. And feelings count too. This is why logic comes back guiltily to apologize for its wrongdoing. In doing so, the audience again is struck with the awkwardness of realizing their own inability to let emotion and logic co-exist peacefully, instead there is a constant give and take of guilt and pride. And, yet again the audience feels an urge to be a part of the show (8:27). This time by changing the subject, because the subject of being unable to control oneself makes one uncomfortable and no one wants to be uncomfortable.

While I think this is a brilliantly conceived, beautifully acted sketch with a surprising attention to detail, there are a few moments that fall flat. The blood present with cat’s meow at the end, though supposed to be a bloody dreidel was meant to make the audience assume a deeper meaning without their being one. This tangentially relates to the use of the word rape over and over in the sketch in that the word rape harkens up strong emotions even though it is being discussed in a very scientific/inoffensive way. But, while an interesting point to make, it is unnecessary and feels thrown in and only confuses the thesis of the sketch. Cora’s dolphin like screech (0:58) when attempting to make a robotic laugh is funny, but completely out of place, and there could have been more times when the three logicians moved simultaneously to make it more obvious that they were one being. Those couple of sloppy points along with the fact that the point of the sketch was completely lost on the audience and the actors in the sketch brings this down to an A-.

Best Actor: Mandy Janoo. Best Line: “Emma… your boobs look awesome.”

Next week: Which Flight?


4 thoughts on “Self Obsession (pt. 2)

  1. Ben says:

    Grade: B+

    Nisse, Seriously? Your self obsessed analysis falls flat. Your analysis of the human mind is fundamentally incorrect. Example: Your philosophizing on your own comedy fills me with the emotional desire to hit you, and also logically suggests that you should be hit. No tension there.

    I was prepared to fight tooth and nail for this sketch to get performed because it made me laugh. I laugh largely at character sketches. I perceived this as a funny character sketch, based on the character of “three weird girls.” If Cora’s laugh made people laugh, then it was a funny character trait, so who cares? The length of the awkward silence, the performers’ inability to keep a straight face (not that I was ever very good at that), and the un-funny incongruous ending, sort of ruin it.

    Watchability: 1
    I found this sketch very funny in writing and read-through, but it turns out, like many Bad Comedy sketches, it seems painfully long when watched on video. Meh. Hannah’s little head motions and good line deliveries on all four of the actress’s parts make it worth a watch.

    • h2money says:

      Good character sketches are never simply !carazy characters! That character is meant to be some extrapolation of some human characteristic that the author finds necessary to comment on. Feigning ignorance in order to fuel your desire to be unimportant may serve to devalue yourself, but it also serves to devalue the efforts of many (and I know you don’t want to hurt others).

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