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Old 07-18-2012, 03:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default The Daniel Tosh Incident

In case you haven't heard, Daniel Tosh of Comedy Central's "Tosh.0" was headlining at a comedy club in L.A. recently when the following exchange happened.

Quote:
Tosh: Rape jokes are funny.

Audience Member: Rape jokes are never funny.

Tosh: Wouldn't it be funny if 5 guys raped her right now?
From here it escalated and Tosh later apologized. My question to you would be this:

1. Are rape jokes funny?

2. Should the woman have made the comment she did?

3. Did Tosh's response make things worse, or was the damage done?

4. Is rape beyond the pale?

5. Given Daniel Tosh's comedic style, should this have been expected?
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Old 07-18-2012, 03:25 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm a little suspicious that the woman might actually have been a plant. He does have audience members heckle him at the end of every episode of his show after all.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:24 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
1. Are rape jokes funny?
They can be. I know of a few from Louis C.K. that made me laugh. Like, "You should never rape anyone. Unless you have a reason, like you want to fuck someone and they won't let you. In which case, what other option do you have?"

Quote:
2. Should the woman have made the comment she did?
I don't get why she did. I mean, it's her opinion and she's entitled to it, but I don't see why she had to blurt it out while he's in the middle of his routine.

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3. Did Tosh's response make things worse, or was the damage done?
He may have made it worse for people who don't get comedy, or take things comedians say far too seriously, but they're always offended.

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4. Is rape beyond the pale?
I don't think anything is in comedy. I find the more offensive it is, the funnier it is. That's why I love comedians like Anthony Jeselnik, and Ricky Gervais' performance at the Golden Globes. At least the first time around. The second time he seemed nicer.

Quote:
5. Given Daniel Tosh's comedic style, should this have been expected?
Absolutely.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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First rule of going to a comedy show

1. Shut the fuck up or pay the consequences.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:29 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Urban Hatemonger ? View Post
First rule of going to a comedy show

1. Shut the fuck up or pay the consequences.
I thought the first rule of going to a comedy show was you're paying for two drinks whether you order them or not.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:31 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I strongly feel that rape jokes are always funny.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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It's a tight rope, I think anything can be funny under the right circumstances and when delivered properly, I mean when the subject of prison comes up there's almost always a jest about not dropping the soap, but that's more an implication than a statement, even if it's an implication that everybody understands. In terms of the woman's response... you're at a comedy gig, it's absolutely pointless to try and argue with the comedian because nobody is going there to take things in a serious sense.

Some comedians can use comedy to take an outside view on the absurdity of some subjects, Bill Hicks and George Carlin are two masters of this set up, and while both have some cringe worthy moments, they knew how to walk that tight rope. Conversely, I've never really seen Daniel Tosh's comedic sensabilities to be able to deliver those same introspective moments from magnifying the absurdity of something that is otherwise always thought of in a serious light.

I'm kind of surprised that comedians haven't learned from Michael Richard's 2006 career destroying outburst in an attempt to make things funny by taking them to the extreme. I doubt this is going to ruin Tosh's career in quite the same way, but it may well cancel his show. I think the problem with this though is Tosh pretty much just jumped to the extreme rather than try and gradually build his way up there and with the building you can gently poke at the logic behind the heckler while simotansiously making yours seem more sound.

Bottom line, I'm probably not going to win the affections or even respect of any of the female members with this line, but considering how much I love dark humor, I'm inclined to say that rape can be funny under the correct circumstances. Now those circumstances are pretty much 1 out of a billion, but even .00000001% is still a percent.
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Old 07-18-2012, 04:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Anything goes at comedy shows and edgier material is often better.

And yes, Louis CK has a fine selection of rape jokes. There's some good stuff in here:

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Old 07-18-2012, 04:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoathsomePete View Post
I'm kind of surprised that comedians haven't learned from Michael Richard's 2006 career destroying outburst in an attempt to make things funny by taking them to the extreme. I doubt this is going to ruin Tosh's career in quite the same way, but it may well cancel his show. I think the problem with this though is Tosh pretty much just jumped to the extreme rather than try and gradually build his way up there and with the building you can gently poke at the logic behind the heckler while simotansiously making yours seem more sound.
I doubt it will cancel his show. It's the most popular show on Comedy Central right now. I also think this is very different from the Michael Richards incident because (a) Tosh is already known for being extremely offensive, not for being a goofball like Richards was, and (b) it doesn't sound like Tosh lost his cool and went crazy like Richards did, it sounds like he was saying something sort of typical for him.
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A Night in the Life of the Invisible Man

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Old 07-18-2012, 05:30 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Comedians can say pretty much whatever they want as long as it's funny. I like Daniel Tosh, and think most of his 'over-the-line' jokes are hilarious. The specific exchange isn't that great, but I will definitely admit to having laughed at rape jokes before.
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What? No. No. No. No no no.
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