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#239- Yet Another Call from Ricky Gervais

 
Nhoj Morley
 
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Nhoj Morley
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24 February 2021 17:34
 

Ricky Gervais calls Sam to ask if AI will replace comedians. They also discuss the implications of not having free will and if a chimp has ever asked, “what does it all mean?” They agree that bears are dangerous.

#239- Yet Another Call from Ricky Gervais


This thread is for listeners’ comments.

 
 
MARTIN_UK
 
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MARTIN_UK
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01 March 2021 04:37
 

Good to see this thread taking some traction.

I had a discussion with a “friend of mine” who might want to join in here about why Sam has chosen to do these podcasts with Mr Gervais, I did offer my view on the matter for what it was worth. Which is not much.

The conversation kind of remind me of the Project Reason podcasts I did with Nhoj years ago, only Sam and Ricky have less whiskey and no singing, which is probably a good thing, and Ricky is funnier. But the dynamic is there.

I like his view and explanation on comedy, explaining the distinction between the subject and the target of a particular joke and how people might be offended by getting this wrong. It’s all about context and what/who is the target.

Well… my work here is done for now, is breakfast too early to eat chicken? Au revoir.

 
Ptbq
 
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Ptbq
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03 March 2021 03:30
 

Thank you for including Gervais’ point about the distinction between the subject of a joke and the target of a joke in your post, Martin.

May I ask whether anybody here is familiar with the radio show and later podcast The Ricky Gervais Show?

One aspect one might be curious about is what explains it making it in the Guinness’ Book of World Records for the world’s most downloaded podcast at one point. For what it’s worth, according to Ricky Gervais Trivia on Twitter, it has been downloaded over 600 million times.

I’m interested in people’s communal sense making about the show. I can post in the ‘Multimedia & Other Podcasts’ sub-forum. I don’t mean to narrow this thread down at the expense of other interesting things to discuss related to Ricky Gervais.

 
MARTIN_UK
 
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MARTIN_UK
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03 March 2021 13:01
 

You are welcome.

Maybe it was funny and free? What are your thoughts on Gervais’ podcasts popularity?
It was 15 years ago so it might be difficult to capture the zeitgeist of the time.

 
Ptbq
 
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04 March 2021 12:12
 

Absolutely, but I wonder if not there is a third factor also: Ambiguity. Factual ambiguity and moral ambiguity.

How fruitful a comparison to professional wrestling is, is something I wouldn’t mind exploring a little bit. When I survey people on Reddit or Facebook or elsewhere, they differ in their interpretations of what is going on and such different arguments are provided, as well as seeming attempts to shut down conversation, that my intuition is there is something here worth writing about.

An interesting exercise would be if people wrote down a keyword or two about their ideas on this subject, then watched the first two minutes of this interview with the men in the podcast, and then compared. The title for that part of the video is called “On the bullying of Karl…” Were your ideas confirmed? Did they change? The link is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5cDBRjipYM  Or disregard it. No problem.

 
MARTIN_UK
 
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04 March 2021 12:47
 

Yes ambiguity is a part of the appeal to people I suppose, but you must realise the three participants in these shows are all very well paid actors, comedians and producers who found a formula that basically points out to their audience how some people say and believe silly things, and they riff off that.

I think it odd that anyone might think it is all real, but I suppose I have the benefit of being British and understanding that type of humour.

If you have ever watched Laurel and Hardy, did you think it was wrong the way Oliver Hardy Treated Stan Laurel? They were actors and comedians who found a winning comedy formula, Stan Laurel was a comedy genius.

 
Ptbq
 
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11 March 2021 13:19
 

Thank you, Martin.

Gervais is clear about Laurel and Hardy’s influence on him (1). There was a Laurel and Hardy between Brent and Gareth in “The Office” (and between Gareth and Tim). There was a Laurel and Hardy between Maggie and Andy in “Extras.” There was a Laurel and Hardy between Derek and Kev in “Derek.” I had heard this before but may have failed to see its relevance here (and I had not sought out their material).

However, if you have the patience, let me push back some. I think.

Apparently Karl Pilkington considered leaving the radio show because of how he was treated, as discussed at the beginning of the show 12 April 2003. How do you make sense of that? The first five minutes. (2)

(1) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XAnfoOBSb0Y
(2) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GGchV5a1qeM

 
MARTIN_UK
 
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12 March 2021 01:23
 

They are actors, acting.
Doing a great job of it too, by the looks of things.

 
Ptbq
 
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14 March 2021 07:51
 

Thank you, Martin.

I watched “County Hospital,” “Sons of the Desert” and the Stan & Ollie biopic from 2018. I’m not ready to comment on that right now. Do you have a suggestion for what I might check out next?

 
MARTIN_UK
 
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14 March 2021 08:39
 
Ptbq - 14 March 2021 07:51 AM

Thank you, Martin.

I watched “County Hospital,” “Sons of the Desert” and the Stan & Ollie biopic from 2018. I’m not ready to comment on that right now. Do you have a suggestion for what I might check out next?

“Way out West” is another good film if you are into Stan and Ollie.

Have you ever heard of Morecambe and Wise? Comedy duo from the 1970s? They might expand the scope of understanding English humour. Or even Vic and Bob from more recent times?

Well done for doing some homework in any case, good effort.

Well, I’m here ‘til Friday, try the veal. (comedy reference)

 
Ptbq
 
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19 March 2021 07:40
 

Thank you, Martin. No, these were unfamiliar to me. I have watched some of their sketches on YouTube and checked out their Wikipedia pages. The contract with the audience seems very clear. Isn’t it? We may return to them. (I watched “Way out West.” Thank you.)

‘I love blurring that line between reality and fiction,’ Gervais has said in an interview. His Extras series partly consisted of celebrities playing twisted versions of themselves. He takes on a persona on his stand-up show Politics. And The Office was a fake documentary. Still, if you’ll indulge me, does your description fit this example? Here, Gervais says: “OHHH! I d- listen, right, o- okay listen, right I- I can’t—Can I just explain to people, right, some people have said, ‘Oh, why are you cruel to Karl?’ He drives me mental with things like that.”

From 5:47: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Se2RN1t-XVI

 
LadyJane
 
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19 March 2021 12:04
 

David Brent: Life on the Road

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0z6-TK07SF8

 
 
MARTIN_UK
 
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20 March 2021 03:44
 
Ptbq - 19 March 2021 07:40 AM

Thank you, Martin. No, these were unfamiliar to me. I have watched some of their sketches on YouTube and checked out their Wikipedia pages. The contract with the audience seems very clear. Isn’t it? We may return to them. (I watched “Way out West.” Thank you.)

‘I love blurring that line between reality and fiction,’ Gervais has said in an interview. His Extras series partly consisted of celebrities playing twisted versions of themselves. He takes on a persona on his stand-up show Politics. And The Office was a fake documentary. Still, if you’ll indulge me, does your description fit this example? Here, Gervais says: “OHHH! I d- listen, right, o- okay listen, right I- I can’t—Can I just explain to people, right, some people have said, ‘Oh, why are you cruel to Karl?’ He drives me mental with things like that.”

From 5:47: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Se2RN1t-XVI

The blurring of lines is all part of the comedy, playing a character that bares your real name helps this along.
Are you convinced that some of it is real? Because I can’t help you with your perception.

 
Nhoj Morley
 
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20 March 2021 06:06
 

Let’s not mention Penn and Teller.

Is this a promotion for Mr. Gervais?

 
 
Ptbq
 
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23 March 2021 03:41
 

Thank you, Martin.

Toward the end of the first interview I mentioned, Gervais and Stephen Merchant say the conversations are all real (9:44). How do you make sense of that?

 
MARTIN_UK
 
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23 March 2021 12:25
 
Ptbq - 23 March 2021 03:41 AM

Thank you, Martin.

Toward the end of the first interview I mentioned, Gervais and Stephen Merchant say the conversations are all real (9:44). How do you make sense of that?

Are you sure you understand how comedy works?

Let me tell you what happened to me last week Ptbq, I swear down it’s true, it might just clear up the confusion here. I was looking for something good to read online and I came across this book that caught my attention, it was called ‘The world’s worst thesaurus’, not only was it awful; it was… awful. True story.

[ Edited: 23 March 2021 12:30 by MARTIN_UK]
 
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