In my previous blog, How to Be a Comedian – Tip 31: Stop Using Comic’s Clichés – Part 1, I discussed those overused phrases comics constantly use. In this blog, How to Be a Comedian – Tip 32: Stop Using Comic’s Clichés – Part 2, I’ll delve into the physical comic’s clichés.
How to Be a Comedian – Tip 32: Stop Using Comic’s Clichés – Part 2
To reiterate from my previous blog, comic’s clichés are all those annoying phrases and behaviors comics pick up from other comics. These clichés fulfill certain functions the comic needs to perform, such as greetings, segues, and what to do when the audience is laughing. I’ve covered the verbal comic’s clichés, now I’d like to delve into the lesser known physical comic’s clichés to try to convince you to never use them.
Physical Comic’s Clichés
These are all those recurring actions and behaviors that comics do because they haven’t taken the time to write something original, so they adopt the comic’s clichés. Real people don’t act like this. Here are a few:
Placing one hand on the top of the mic stand.
The mic stand is for holding the microphone, not the comic.
Pacing back and forth looking down at the floor.
The most important thing about stand-up comedy is the comedian’s relationship with the audience, not the floor.
Leaning forward into the audience to deliver a line.
Remember your show in pictures, sounds, and feelings and you’ll tell the story of your jokes, instead of repeating memorized words.
Picking up and smacking down the mike stand to indicate a punch.
Try taking a pause after the punch to give the audience room to laugh, instead of trying to pound the laugh out of them.
Nodding “yes” to the audience between every joke.
Trying staying in the scene of your joke and responding to it, instead of doing a repetitive action.
These aren’t all of them. Each generation seems to add a few more to the ever-growing ranks of the overused and tired. If you really want to be a comedian, then attend to every aspect of your show and create something original, instead of copying the hacks who mindlessly repeat these comic’s clichés.
In my next blog, How to Be a Comedian – Tip 33: Stop Using Comic’s Clichés – Part 3, I’ll broach the comic’s clichés used to greet the audience.
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