It’s in the, um, Timing

Traditionally, actors with an established rep as serious performers can go into comedy, but not the other way ‘round.  That’s been smashed lately by The Daily Show and Stephen Colbert, among many others who riff off of CNN and let the jokes write themselves.  It’s revolutionary comedy, yet deeply indebted to the topical humor of Richard Pryor and George Carlin in the 70s.

What’s more important than how it will change comedy is how it might change how we talk about current events.  One central element of comedy is timing, and a sense of timing is working its way into the patter of political talk.  But how do you render that in writing?

That’s the secret.  It’s what I work on all the time.  Let me explain …

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