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Discussion Starter #1
On Letterman Monday night (6/24/08) comic Richard Belzar swore twice and instead of placing a piercing beep over the words, the show just omitted the words. Kudos to Letterman as the practice of inserting a loud beep has become so commonplace that you hear it dozens of times a day in various media, even on purpose in commercials and promotional bits. Give me the swear words instead. Leno used to edit out the words before it joined the beep consortium, and this year American Idol also joined the crowd going from a gentle chime to the higher pitch beeps on its edits. Way to go Dave!
 

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Richard Belzar has been in the entertainment business, and TV specifically, for a long time. When you see someone swearing on network tv you have to wonder if they are trying to be "cool" or just so enamored with themself that they don't care.


Some of these old guys should be showing the younger performers that you don't have to pepper your language with profanity to get laughs or tell a story.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by aydu /forum/post/14155961


Richard Belzar has been in the entertainment business, and TV specifically, for a long time. When you see someone swearing on network tv you have to wonder if they are trying to be "cool" or just so enamored with themself that they don't care.


Some of these old guys should be showing the younger performers that you don't have to pepper your language with profanity to get laughs or tell a story.

Old guys teaching the younger performers not to use bad language? Let's look at some of the top comedians:

Quote:
Richard Pryor

George Carlin

Lenny Bruce

Chris Rock

Steve Martin

Rodney Dangerfield

Roseanne Barr

Eddie Murphy

Jerry Seinfeld

Robin Williams

Bill Hicks

Sam Kinison

Dennis Miller

Jim Carrey

Martin Lawrence

Bill Maher

Jon Stewart

Dave Chappelle

Adam Sandler

Denis Leary

Lewis Black

DL Hughley

Colin Quinn

Eddie Griffin

Cedric the Entertainer

Kevin Pollak

Dave Attell

Wanda Sykes

Bernie Mac

Paul Rodriguez

Eddie Izzard

David Cross

Jay Mohr

Kevin James

Dana Carvey

Andrew Dice Clay

Louis CK

Ricky Gervais

Jimmy Carr

I guess that leaves us with Bill Cosby as a truly great "clean" comic. The opposition to swearing in comedy is humorous. Almost all great comics have used real language and not sanitized it.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by aydu /forum/post/14155961


Richard Belzar has been in the entertainment business, and TV specifically, for a long time. When you see someone swearing on network tv you have to wonder if they are trying to be "cool" or just so enamored with themself that they don't care.


Some of these old guys should be showing the younger performers that you don't have to pepper your language with profanity to get laughs or tell a story.

But that's not Belzar's shtick. His stand-up routines have always been "blue". He's no Steven Wright (who doesn't belong in the above list as I've never heard him use a swear word in a routine). In fact, it's been so long since I've seen Wright in anything, anywhere, apparently even he's not Steven Wright any longer, either.
 

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Bill Cosby has said for years he does not need to use that kind of language to be funny. I've heard him say if swearing makes you funny, then you're not funny. I have no problem with others doing that. But it seems to be a bit overdone.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MRM4 /forum/post/14156288


Bill Cosby has said for years he does not need to use that kind of language to be funny. I've heard him say if swearing makes you funny, then you're not funny. I have no problem with others doing that. But it seems to be a bit overdone.

I think Cosby is incredibly funny...but concerning his comments that you mentioned...I believe that the evidence suggests otherwise. Swearing doesn't make them funny. It just makes the act feel more natural and genuine. More so than a comic who obviously swears and is holding back. Cosby is different because that's just who he is...he's not a person who swears in general.


Personally, I believe that if you are uncomfortable with swearing in a comedy routine...you're living in some type of sanitized dream version of what you wish the world could be. This is life. Real life is dirty.
 

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Thing is... Richard Pryor was also quite funny without swearing. The curse words did not make the joke. The same can be said for George Carlin and a few others on the list above.


If you are truly funny, then the cursing is not necessary.


I am generally not offended by cursing, however there have been a few good comedians that I could not watch in mixed company or in a family environment because their style was not appropriate for everyone even if I knew the jokes would be funny to a wider audience.


On the flip side... we have comedians who try and mimic the style of a Richard Pryor by being crude and cursing... but they are not actually funny, just going for shock value... and they completely miss out how funny someone like Pryor was independent of the cursing.


I note, for example... Bill Cosby used to chide Eddie Murphy for cursing so much... but Cosby rarely said things about Richard Pryor for doing the same. I think Cosby immediately saw that Pryor was funny even when being raw... but Murphy was trying too much to be like Pryor's rawness without the actual humor behind it.


This same thing is why we end up with dozens of boy bands and tv show clones every year, trying to emulate what they think is good about the popular ones instead of trying to just be good on their own merits.
 

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Bill Cosby is no Eddie Murphy or Richard Pryor.

Cursing, if not over the top with no added benefit, is used by I'd guess 90% of adults.

If done right it can be extremely effective in showing emotion at a level not able to be reached without.

This isn't Sesame Place we are talking about. Why must any comedian pander to a bigger audience??


I remember seeing Eddie's bit about Bill calling him after one of his shows saying how he thought it was great but that he had to stop cursing. Eddie told Richard and Richard told him to tell Bill to go you know what himself







igreg....I agree, this is a much better way to handle it than that dreaded beep.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by E-A-G-L-E-S /forum/post/14156732


Bill Cosby is no Eddie Murphy or Richard Pryor.

Cursing, if not over the top with no added benefit, is used by I'd guess 90% of adults.

If done right it can be extremely effective in showing emotion at a level not able to be reached without.

This isn't Sesame Place we are talking about. Why must any comedian pander to a bigger audience??

Sesame "Place" threw me for a minute
j/k

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I remember seeing Eddie's bit about Bill calling him after one of his shows saying how he thought it was great but that he had to stop cursing. Eddie told Richard and Richard told him to tell Bill to go you know what himself

I've seen that also...VERY funny.
 

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Seinfeld swears? I've never heard him. Not saying he doesn't, just never heard it.


And that Murphy bit about Cosby is ****ing hysterical.
 

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Originally Posted by sangs /forum/post/14156948


Seinfeld swears? I've never heard him. Not saying he doesn't, just never heard it.

Not much, but he does and it is unexpected...which has the desired effect.
 

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Discussion Starter #13

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Originally Posted by jrcorwin /forum/post/14156383


I think Cosby is incredibly funny...but concerning his comments that you mentioned...I believe that the evidence suggests otherwise. Swearing doesn't make them funny. It just makes the act feel more natural and genuine. More so than a comic who obviously swears and is holding back. Cosby is different because that's just who he is...he's not a person who swears in general.


Personally, I believe that if you are uncomfortable with swearing in a comedy routine...you're living in some type of sanitized dream version of what you wish the world could be. This is life. Real life is dirty.

Swearing has its place in comedy acts, but so many comedians use it as a crutch. A swear word will almost inevitably get a laugh just as praising the audience will get applause.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by igreg /forum/post/14157566


Swearing has its place in comedy acts, but so many comedians use it as a crutch. A swear word will almost inevitably get a laugh just as praising the audience will get applause.

Yes, I would agree. The first response to this post however seemed to imply that swearing was unique to the younger comedians versus the older comedians. The vast majority of top notch comedians swear at about the same rate as an everyday person going out for beer (or going out to a comedy show). Then there are those who probably take the swearing a bit too far (depends on your personal tastes). This isn't unique to younger comedians.


If someone is opposed to swearing in comedy acts...I'm sure they will think that amateur night at the local convent will be a real hoot. Other than that, your options are pretty slim.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrcorwin /forum/post/14156099


I guess that leaves us with Bill Cosby as a truly great "clean" comic.

Brian Regan rarely swears (h*ll is about it) and is a funny as anyone out there. Jeff Dunham has some swearing in his routine, but it fits perfectly when he does it, and it isn't the over-the-top crude kind of swearing. I think Lewis Black's swearing fits because he expresses so much frustration and anger that all of us feel, that it's hard not to identify with it when he does it.
 

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It is always entertaining seeing the reaction of American guests on Australian TV and the lack of censorship we have. Their jaw almost drops when the host says something on a live TV show swears - it is more interesting than the comments themselves.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aliens /forum/post/14157835


I think Lewis Black’s swearing fits because he expresses so much frustration and anger that all of us feel, that it’s hard not to identify with it when he does it.

That's what I like, using it when necessary. Just like the late George Carlin. How could he not swear with some of the subjects he talked about? Sometimes certain people just need to be called s**thead, a**holes or motherf*****s. I do it at home while watching TV, I don't see why the people on TV can't do it.

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And all this censorship crap can usually be blamed on one person or a few people. Like Carlin's incident. One little "goody-goody" a*****e was listening to his show and was offended. Rather than doing the normal thing and changing the channel, a supreme court case was made out of it.


Or Janet Jackson in 2004. Again, a few s***heads complain and whine to the FCC. And what did we get as a result? Even more govenrmnet regulation and restriction. Broadcast TV has to fear ridiculous fines for doing something that really is nothing. AHHHHH!! A bad word!! I'm telling mommy!! What, are we in kindergarten?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Offline /forum/post/14158078


It is always entertaining seeing the reaction of American guests on Australian TV and the lack of censorship we have. Their jaw almost drops when the host says something on a live TV show swears - it is more interesting than the comments themselves.

How is nudity censored down under? It's pretty pathetic up here... you can dismember, disembowel, and disintegrate people in all manner of grisly ways on American TV, but give them a half-second shot of a nipple and the very moral fabric of our Republic is suddenly in danger of collapse.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by archiguy /forum/post/14158194


How is nudity censored down under? It's pretty pathetic up here... you can dismember, disembowel, and disintegrate people in all manner of grisly ways on American TV, but give them a half-second shot of a nipple and the very moral fabric of our Republic is suddenly in danger of collapse.

Don't forget fat, saggy man boobs are OK. As well as a topless woman on Oprah on a show about weight loss.


And Oprah can say "penis" multiple times yet Howard Stern gets lambasted for making a joke.
 
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