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Seriously, what is up with the gags?


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It bewilders me to understand what the mid-century obsession was with the ongoing “man bites dog”, “dog bites man”, and also the, “thats no lady… ______”, repetitions. And there’s also the ever-ready screaming cat that is tossed into frame in the dark alley or dark warehouse  scene right on cue. 

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"Who's that lady you're dancing with?"

"That's no lady, that's my wife."

I think it's from Henny Youngman.

  I hear some of these gags, or just the first part, in old movies and I imagine that generation heard it first in a movie, or knew it from vaudeville routines, and then used it so often everyone knew what it meant, even if only part of the phrase was spoken.  Sort of like we all know "Not that there's anything wrong with that," from Seinfeld, but future generations may not get it.

You know who stole a lot of those wise guy cracks?  Bugs Bunny.

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2 hours ago, AndreaDoria said:

"Who's that lady you're dancing with?"

"That's no lady, that's my wife."

I think it's from Henny Youngman.

  I hear some of these gags, or just the first part, in old movies and I imagine that generation heard it first in a movie, or knew it from vaudeville routines, and then used it so often everyone knew what it meant, even if only part of the phrase was spoken.  Sort of like we all know "Not that there's anything wrong with that," from Seinfeld, but future generations may not get it.

You know who stole a lot of those wise guy cracks?  Bugs Bunny.

I Dunno. I Think to Say Bugs Bunny, Mel Blanc, Carl Stalling (from a Musical Sense) et  al "Stole" Such Shenanigans is a bit of a misnomer perhaps.

  I Think, a lot of this (or fair amount at least) is conceived and "constructed" within the eye of the beholder (both from an artist/performer as well as from a viewer standpoint) if we are to talk upon such Comedic Hallowed Ground as Bugs and Co.

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7 hours ago, oldorange1 said:

It bewilders me to understand what the mid-century obsession was with the ongoing “man bites dog”, “dog bites man”, and also the, “thats no lady… ______”, repetitions. And there’s also the ever-ready screaming cat that is tossed into frame in the dark alley or dark warehouse  scene right on cue. 

You forgot;

"Is that a gun in your pocket, or are you glad to see  me? " ;) 

Sure.  There's plenty of repetitious gags and tropes in mid-century movie making.  But it doesn't stop there.  There's plenty in second half century movies and even 21st century movie making.  Especially in the "horror" genre.  To whit;

Demons with insect-like visages that open distended jaws while tilting their heads to one side like a curious puppy......

Then crawling up a wall and onto the ceiling.

Interior shots of "haunted" houses that quickly cut to an exterior shot just in time to show it's windows blowing outward.

Some "possesed" individual who suddenly(and for no given reason) shakes his/her head back and forth  at a rapidly and blurring rate.

Get used to it.  If it's discovered enough people like these sort of things, movie makers will overuse them to death.

Sepiatone

 

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