The Surprising Nature of Humor

I’ve come to the conclusion that in order for me to find something funny, it must surprise me.  If I can see a punchline coming from a mile away, I’m not going to laugh.  It isn’t that I “don’t have a sense of humor” (in quotes because I’ve been told that or don’t like to laugh… I love to laugh.  I just can’t force myself to laugh at things I don’t find funny.

Which brings me to TBS’s new offering “Sullivan and Son.”

Steve Byrne, half-Korean/half-Irish comedian, both created and stars as a titular character.  The show features a half-Japanese/half-Chinese-Scotish woman [Jodi Long], whose fake Korean accent borders between offensive and uncomfortable, playing his supposed Korean mother and a nondescript old white guy [Dan Lauria] playing his dad.  His sister is played by a woman [Vivian Bang] who is actually literally more Korean than the mother.

I absolutely love Steve Byrne’s standup comedy.  He consistently surprises me by combining different references that I’d never have come up with.  Consequently, I find myself laughing my happy ass off.  For instance, he told a joke the other night on Conan that juxtaposed his newborn sleeping baby girl with Hulk Hogan in a sleeper hold that nearly put me into a coma.

That taken into consideration, I naturally couldn’t wait to check out the debut of “Sullivan and Son.”

What a steaming pile of obvious.  Who wrote this garbage?  Who created the racist fake Korean accent?  One can see the jokes coming from 3 km away.  The punchlines practically scream, “HEY!  I’M A PUNCHLINE!  LAUGH AT ME (please)…”

But, if you’ve been dying to see Cheers meets All In The Family meets whatever that show was that Margaret Cho had minus laughter… knock yourself out.

I has a sad.  Ugh.

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