Its not new, but I've been thinking about this for a while.
Whilst channel flicking I happened to catch Russell Brand's Ponderland. Everyone's always raving about Russell, so I thought I'd give it a look.
I don't know about his other work, but Ponderland tonight consisted solely of clips from old television programmes interspersed by comedy. Well, I say "comedy", but it just seemed to be variations of "Look! Didn't people say/do funny things in the old days? Isn't that hilarious in and of itself".
He's not the only culprit. I've seen a number of clip shows where old fashioned clothes/mannerisms/attitudes are pointed at and laughed at. No actual jokes. Just laughing at how things were different.
I suppose if you have no concept of history, just seeing something different to what is popular today, is a source of never-ending hilarity. But anybody with a shred of historical knowledge, or even just somebody who was there, will just think, "Yes. That's what it was like. Do you actually have a point to make?"
I don't mind playful pastiche. I don't mind jokes at the expense of the past. Even cruel satire at the expense of old-fashioned attitudes can be funny if handled right. But just pointing at something old, and laughing because it is different, just shows how ignorant you are.
On the other hand, all these "isn't the past funny" shows will make excellent material for future shows...
"Look at this clip of a 21st century presenter mocking the past. Aren't his clothes funny? And listen to his dated catchphrases. Hilarious!"
4 days ago