Comedy is an art form. It is bred in the most intelligent, the most observant and the most self-hating of people. Add a touch of insanity and you have a genius the likes of Robin Williams, Tina Fey, and Conan O’Brian.
People lust for the funny. Their ability to please halls filled with people make them the subjects of scorn and envy. Nothing feels better than hearing something hilarious, losing your inhibitions and maybe even peeing your pants. The only thing that could possibly feel better is making the moment happen. It’s no wonder that so many Yalies want to be in comedy groups. Making people laugh feels good. The problem is when you think you can and you are absolutely fucking delusional.
It has recently become quite clear that the determination of our classmates has caused them to ignore the truth that all of their friends already know: founding a comedy group with other people who didn’t make it to call-backs will not be creating an opportunity to achieve dreams of fame and fortune. Frankly, it’s a slap in the face of God who is trying to warn people that if they don’t get into one of the seven comedy groups here, MAYBE YOU SHOULD BE DOING SOMETHING ELSE. You could LARP (that’s funny, right?), or maybe compete in Yale’s Last Comic Standing so you can be as unfunny as you want! Really, college is finding out what you are good at, anyway. That, and accepting when you are shit at something.
I remember freshman year thinking that I could just waltz on into an improv audition and come out smelling like roses. I remember the disappointment, and the shame of having been captain of my high school improv team, not being tapped and how I missed it! I did! I can understand wanting to recapture some of the Comedy Sportz glory. Nothing feels better than a solid scene, one where people didn’t cringe at the lack of character development, the lost joke, or the eventuality of incest and death. Good times! But really, this is the big league, you know, where people, like, actually go on to perform professionally. I quickly realized that I was out of my depth and went on to pursue a promising future as the hag that cracks inappropriate jokes at cocktail parties. That is my niche. Sometimes that just needs to be enough.
Maybe more people want to do improv because it is fun and you can play rhyming games and pretend to be dragons. Whatever! That’s fine! Cool, do that! But those are entirely possible without subjecting your friends and other victims to the torture of an hour-and-a-half long groanfest. You could play with children instead. Children think everything is funny. They’re just as likely to laugh at your face as your stand-up act. Isn’t that reassuring?
Some would argue that creating new comedy groups would diversify the options. Yeah, uh huh. We have musical improv, sketch comedy, long form and short form. What else do we need? A troupe of mimes? No, the only difference that matters is between ‘sucks’ and ‘doesn’t suck.’ Some of the groups are on the precipice of sucking, and another group would certainly tip the scales towards all groups becoming truly unfunny.
If I were, say, an Ex!t Player, I would send a horse’s head to the usurpers who want to take my performance spaces away from me. Rooms for shows are a hot commodity on campus and eventually, someone is going to be left out in the cold. Literally, people will be doing shows on Cross Campus in January if the competition for fire marshal-approved spaces gets any worse.
I guess the only argument I could possibly see for adding another group is if it was dry. But then again, a comedian sans blackouts just seems impossible and wrong.
My point is, really, if you can’t get into a group, if you throw a little bitch fit and say, “I can do funny all by myself!” nobody on God’s green earth will want to see you play World’s Worst Improviser. There are so many other things at this school to do, so many things to see. The possibilities are endless, so why have more of the same? Boooooring.