Thursday, July 16, 2009

let's all take a break for two seconds

Hi guys, I thought I might distract you all with something vaguely related to our purposes here - recently it was brought to my attention that a writer for The New Republic had taken to critiquing the jokes in Thomas Friedman's New York Times column. Obviously, that column is not nearly as important as the humor we talk about here, but still, it is rare enough that someone in the famous popular media attempts some humor criticism, so go, read the article, and tell me what you think. Myself, I like think most of analysis is pretty good, though the few jokes this author liked I would have been less forgiving with. But most were judged to be poor, and well, they deserved it.

Go! go forth and decide for yourself.
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In other news, I got a ton of people who want to guest post, so it looks like what we'll do is just have a different writer every day for like 3 weeks! maybe more. This is going to start possibly as early as next monday. Maybe it will be a huge failure - but maybe not. Who knows? Anyway, they can't all IM randall and change their minds...

105 comments:

  1. Ohhhhh DrHorrible just got burned!

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  2. You should have tried this earlier, Carl. Get someone to FAIL HORRIBLY at guest posting in order to get a good rotation of guests who realize they can't be any worse.

    I'll wait a little while to throw my name into the hat.

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  3. Look at the last 2 dr horrible messages at the end of the screenshot. He asks randall a programming question for the sole purpose of licking randy's balls and then bragging to his no doubt legally retarded programming professor that he got advice from teh randzorz.

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  4. Can we please *not* have this thread be about Dr Horrible? He's been excoriated thoroughly in the previous thread; I'm pretty sure that people's minds are made up on that subject. If you want to keep talking about this guy, maybe you could do it in the thread where his resignation was announced. You'll have plenty of company.

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  5. So who's doing today's comic?

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  6. I suggest Doctor Horrible does it.

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  7. ...I like your thinking.

    "First I would like to thank Carl for letting me continue to guest post, and also Randall for making this comic (I love you Randall) (Randall isn't Carl) and to all of you for contintuing to support me in my time of emotional weakness, I love you guys! <3

    So first up, man, this xkcd! LOL! Look at all those words he's given us the joy of reading, truly a master at work, here (<3 Randall), and the way he takes Schadenfreude and makes it WACKY is just hilarious, today, right? I mean, my friends do those kind of things all the time and I totally just go "I realized a while back that we're having entirely different conversations." when they admit to murdering people in cold blood. Haha, get out of my head Randall! <3<3<3"

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  8. I propose Rehoboam does it.

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  9. Come on guys. Stop picking on me. Can't you see that I lost my license to practice Horrible? That's punishment enough.

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  10. Oh, I'm so sorry IMPOSTER. It certainly won't happen again.

    captcha: tents. What, did you run out of nonsensical non-words?

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  11. That TNR review keeps forwarding me to some bullshit "you have a virus let me scan your computer for you" scamware page which is SO TOTALLY CONVINCING what with it looking like Windows XP on my Mac.

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  12. fluffy, thank you for bringing that up, I just got that page too and started using my actual security programs to look into it. Funny how today's "security warning" pages are like home improvement scammers -- "No really, everything's broken and you need my help!"

    My guess is TNR got hacked?

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  13. Wow, that was probably about the scariest scam I've ever seen. It's a good thing I'm not on an administrator account here; who knows what they would have installed?

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  14. I'm guessing you don't browse through much random porn then, eh?

    -Jman

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  15. I don't know what advert either of you are talking about. What browser are you using and did you take note of the originating website (of the advert, not anything about TNR)?

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  16. It looks like TNR found and eliminated what was probably a site hack, so it's not doing it any more. Phew.

    I'm guessing it was something dumb like them having some HTML sanitation bug in their comment engine or the like.

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  17. Holy crap, Friedman is such a hack. All of those jokes are so old they've been found in the fossil record. All I see there is a bunch of word-count padding.

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  18. Agreed. When I first started reading the NY Times, I was a real Friedman devotee. But then more months went by, and he started saying...the same things. Both in humor and in political analysis, his work tends to be repetitive and formulaic. I stopped reading Friedman's column once I realized that based on the title, I already knew everything he was going to say.

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  19. What kind of liberal latte-sipping QUEER reads newspapers?

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  20. @fluffy happened to me under linux. I love those that make an effort to make it look real but then fuck it up by making it shaking or blinking in red

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  21. Hey, lookit that!

    Astute xkcd readers will note that this is very similar to 541. But what's really cool is that the author noticed that (well, his readers did, and Kellett admitted it right there in the newspost; scroll down a sec and he explains it and is embarrassed and apologizes.) While I don't agree that XKCD did it funnier--really, neither of them are that funny--it is cool that he immediately acknowledges that and apologizes to Randall. Straight away! Much, much classier than the events of XKCD's own 461. Thanks, Dave Kellett, for at least being honest.

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  22. Maleloth (Mal from xkcdsucks)- thank you for linking to that. That is EXACTLY what randall should have done on several occasions. Doesn't this Dave fellow ending up looking super-classy when he wrote that? I think so. And Randall looked super-un-classy for not doing it.

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  23. Malethoth, please consider changing your name from "Malethoth K." to "Malethoth (Mal from xkcdsucks)".

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  24. yes i second that plea

    also thanks for showing us that example, that is exactly what we want from randall when he rips off other jokes, unintentionally or not.

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  25. what really pisses me off is that he hardly ever talks about his comic, right? like in his blag? having never ventured there, i have no idea... okay so wait someone please verify this for me first and then maybe i will explain how that pisses me off if it is true.

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  26. It don't look like it, no.

    Explain away, Amanda! The stage is yours.

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  27. WOO AMANDA RANTS

    yeah he pretty much never even updates the blog

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  28. I ventured there once. I came back with that fucking electric skateboard horsepower science loove thing that still haunts me to this day. Don't even think about going to the blog. Turn back I say.

    So yeah, just assume that what you assumed is true. I want to hear the rant.

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  29. You guys, how could I refuse such a perfect request.

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  30. Hahah. Not really a rant, I was a little more pissed off an hour ago than I am now (why is it so humid on the east coast).

    Okay so if he doesn't ever talk about the comic in his blag, doesn't that mean he sort of distances himself from the comic? Isn't that what someone said artists are supposed to do? So he makes a conscious effort to NOT discuss the comic, he never explains his errors, he never really brings up how he thought of a strip (/especially/ if he accidentally copied another comic)... yet he gets insulted when other people talk about the comic? And he guilted Doc H into not writing critiques (at least for the time being?) by saying that people were slamming something he 'cares about.' Someone was very hesitant to use the h-word earlier but the more I think about it, the more Randall Munroe is very seriously a hypocrite. He doesn't talk about his work, and doesn't get upset when people praise how great he is and credit him with shit that isn't even his original work. But he gets miffed when there is a site that offers ways to improve the comic, a site that says "hey Randy, we know it's possible that you didn't steal this joke on purpose but when you do it twice in a row and then make no mention of it on your blog it sounds kind of fishy, hey maybe say something about it every so often"? (This isn't to say that we aren't pretty snarky about it, but I think it's pretty obvious that most of the snark is in the name of humor!) Why is it okay to mindlessly adore everything he does, but not okay to take a step back and realize that sometimes he sucks?

    It really bothers me that he's only half-done what he should as a guy who lives off a webcomic--realize that he has become popular and accepted it, and realize that he should be open to criticism. He has only done the first half: he accepts the fame, but not the idea that some people don't like his "art." The phrase "if you don't like it, don't read it" is much too overused when it comes to xkcd and Randall Munroe's work. If we don't like it, we have every right to say what sucks about it. If he is profiting off of this shittastic five-minute-a-day job, he ought to suck it up and not completely ignore criticism because ow it hurts his feelings when we say the latest comic stinks.

    okay that was a lot longer than I expected it to be sorry you guys, I am not very eloquent.

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  31. My goal is to become a higher-profile member of the xkcdsucks commentariat.

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  32. Cuddlefish PrimeJuly 17, 2009 at 4:00 PM

    That's been my goal for a long time. Unfortunately, I lack both the writing skills and the incisive wit necessary to consistently make interesting comments. So I'm mostly content to just sit back and watch the professionals.

    CAPTCHA: salami

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  33. Malethoth: I may not be high-profile, but at least I'm noticed.

    Note to Randall: classhole is not asshole. I think Mr. Hat stopped being cleverly funny a long time ago. Sadism in a vacuum is a little boring.

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  34. Why are you making a note to him when he specifically told you that he doesn't read this blog?

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  35. Rehoboam: By "note to Randall", I meant "criticism of the comic". But if I had said "criticism of the comic", everybody would've gotten mad at me when I'm just trying to improve and be more callous.

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  36. What happened to your pledge to post anonymously? Isn't the constant sniping at you exactly the thing you wanted to avoid?

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  37. Okay, DH, now people are just intentionally giving you a hard time because they know you'll crack like an egg.

    DON'T GIVE IN!!!

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  38. Malethoth: I took Amanda's advice. I'm just going to try to be as normal as possible now and I'll ignore the irrational sniping. If you have something serious to say to me, even if it's mean, email it to Carl. It must be well-constructed. He can forward it to me. We'll talk like that. But I'll ignore any "LOL RANDY'S BOYFRIEND COCKSUCKER FAGGOT" shit.

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  39. Hey Doctor Horrible...

    "RAAAANNNN.. DAAALLLLLLL"

    "RAAAAAANNNNNNNN.. DAAALLLLLLL!"

    Just kiddin'...

    (watch your back mutherfucka)

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  40. I want a William M. Hughes guest post.

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  41. LOL RANDY'S BOYFRIEND COCKSUCKER FAGGOT

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  42. Dr. Horrible has been known to stroke his pussy to a picture like this. [NSFW]

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  43. I can agree with the first two panels, but the rest of the comic relies on a joke that is old. Two people are talking and one goes off the deep end getting carried away on the subject.

    A variant is then making the conversation to be a metaphor for a personal issue, then replacing words in the coversation with what you're thinking about.

    I point to Professor Farnsworth wandering off talking about atomic monsters that suck blood on Futurama, and Stephen Colbert's interview with Paul McCartney where he replaces John Lennon with Jon Stewart. Those were funnier because they relied on the context of the wider show, facial expressions, or the spontenaity involved.

    Here instead we have an infodump of things that are Black Hat Man-like, and lately most things Black Hat Man-like have involved variants of graverobbing. The confusion involved in Black Hat Man's tirade peaks in the fourth panel.

    In the fifth, I don't see what is so funny about horseback or "like men do," mostly because I have heard it so many times before, in the form of Vin Diesel jokes, Chuck Norris jokes, and just a few days prior in the #xkcd channel as several pages full of nothing but one-liners beginning with "real men do X," that was started as a critique of someone asking if they should take their pain medication or "be a man" and bare it. Perhaps the humor arises from the eccentricity involved, like using a Rube Goldberg machine to cook a waffle, but this, too, has been overdone in the comic.

    In any case, "I can see a while back you and I were having entirely different conversations" appears to be the punchline, which refers to the idea that Black Hat Man is obliviously drifting off into his own world. Here, the same joke is essentially being told not once, not twice, but three times over the last two panels, AND you are explaining why it is funny.

    So not only does it take a really old joke, but it explains why it is funny and repeats itself as well. Repeats itself as well. Ass swell.

    You can post this on your next entry if you want. I'm too lazy to make a Blogspot account when I don't blog. --- Hannah.

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  44. Dr. Horrible, if you want to shape up, saying how you just want to be normal! might not be the best plan. Sayin'.

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  45. @Amanda: Phew! I thought that 'the h-word' was hentai.

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  46. -Awesome-.

    And by that I mean Mal's name change.

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  47. If you have something serious to say to me, even if it's mean, email it to Carl. It must be well-constructed. He can forward it to me. We'll talk like that. But I'll ignore any "LOL RANDY'S BOYFRIEND COCKSUCKER FAGGOT" shit.

    You've also ignored all other, well-constructed criticism. So all in all, it looks like you don't want to deal with ANY critical remarks, not just the crude ones. Which just reminds me of Randall.

    WHO IS YOUR BOYFRIEND LOL!

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  48. That's not entirely true, Fred.

    Did you even read the last thread?

    I don't blaim you; it got way too long, way too quickly.

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  49. *blame

    And I generally only read this blog as I'm posting my comments, so unless your comment is near one of my posts or has my name in it, I wouldn't hold out on me reading it.

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  50. I haven't ignored well-constructed criticism! Jay talked about how I cared too quickly and I then admitted that it was a fault of mine on which I am working. That was hardly ignoring.

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  51. Well, true. You haven't been ignoring -all- criticism. But on the ones you do respond to, your basic response is "I know, I am just such a considerate human being and I need to work on that." That's hardly getting into the matter.

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  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  53. Fred: What would be getting into the matter? (I'm not being a dick or anything, I'm now curious as to what you mean.)

    Captcha: Ashoul. What all of you have been! (Just kidding.)

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  54. This blog (and particularly the comment section) is like a bad sitcom.

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  55. Person #1: Does that mean a middle-aged woman here has to go back to school? OH AND ALSO WE GET TO GO TO DISNEY WORLD OR HAWAII!

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  56. Everyone should read the last thread. Me and Carl do a Spinal Tap takeoff at the end, it's great.

    oh yeah, comic I guess: Mr Hat has a neck right up until the last panel. And Megan is actually sitting in a chair! So woo!

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  57. The last thread won't make Dr. Horrible being/having a pussy go away.

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  58. Leave "Doctor" Hórrible alone you revolting scum spawn. He is under my protection now, and only a fool would wish to incur my wrath.

    Hórrible, you have insulted me on multiple occasions. You have refused to uphold my reasonable demands (you referred to me as 'Willy' at least twice). Your scathing and vitriolic essay was posted onto this very blag.
    And yet, I defend you.
    Why, you ask?
    Because those of us who like "Xkcd" are persecuted* and limited in number, so we must unite. Or else we fall.
    Come, Hórrible. You are safe from them now.
    You shall not fear them any longer. Now you shall pity them for what they are.

    -William Monty Hughes
    IQ 224
    "Cogito Ergo Sum"

    *By plebians and psychopaths

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  59. LOL RANDY'S BOYFRIEND COCKSUCKER FAGGOT

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  60. How about we stop focusing on me now? This is Carl's blog. It's about xkcd and criticisms thereof. I'm no longer posting and the entire thread about me has been closed. Let's PLEASE drop it; you like me or you don't. Whatever your opinion, you don't need to post it here.

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  61. Ann Apolis is secretly Randall Munroe. His humor is of the same caliber.

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  62. Does that mean I'm Carl too? Awesome. I'll make sure my next post contains the word "placid". I love that word.

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  63. I don't think there's any good reason to be hesitant about calling him a hypocrite. After all:

    http://xkcd.com/606/

    Really, Randall? Really? You think you're in a position to tell us that repeating old memes isn't funny? I knew that already, thanks; I just wish that you'd figured it out before making it a fucking backbone of your webcomic.

    And then of course there's 603 and 610, both of which are essentially saying "If you think that you're better than everyone else, you're probably deluding yourself." This message would resonate better with me if previous comics hadn't convinced me that Randall has a really big fucking ego.

    That said, I still think hypocrisy is at the bottom of my list of problems with Randall/xkcd. He's creepy (558), whiny (601), and a hack (608/609). And yes, I could have found an example of his ripping off someone else for that last one, but I think I'm more amazed that he got away with TWO COMICS IN A ROW that were shallow re-writes of HIS OWN previous work.

    Oh, and most of all, I think he's overrated. Granted, it might be a little unfair to blame him for the fact that way more people read (and, somehow, like) his comic than it deserves, but it still pisses me off.

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  64. Word up bro. ---^

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  65. "How about we stop focusing on me now? This is Carl's blog. It's about xkcd and criticisms thereof. I'm no longer posting and the entire thread about me has been closed. Let's PLEASE drop it; you like me or you don't. Whatever your opinion, you don't need to post it here."

    He said please. Pussy.

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  66. God Dr. Horrible, that guy's a douchebag huh?

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  67. I too would just like to reiterate that Doctor Horrible is the second biggest pussy associated with XKCD, outranked only by Randall himself.

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  68. Cuddlefish PrimeJuly 19, 2009 at 2:32 AM

    I don't like all this drama. Can't we all just be a family again? :( :( :(

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  69. we are a family, it's just

    carl has started drinking again

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  70. NOT THE CHILDREN DON'T HIT THE CHILDREN, CARL

    *runs out of the room crying*

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  71. It's funny; Rob was the biggest loser on the blog for a while.

    Then Doctor Horrible showed up.


    You really should thank him, Rob.

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  72. It's funny; COVIZAPIBETEFOKY was the biggest asshole on the blog for a while.

    Then I showed up.


    You really should thank me, COVIZAPIBETEFOKY.

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  73. Hm. Maybe you're right. Maybe I shouldn't take you guys seriously.

    Okay! From now on, I care about nobody who isn't a real person. Which means I don't care about Randall, and it also means I don't care that you guys are being assholes, since I've been a troll before and I know how fun it is to watch someone squirm.

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  74. Yuk Yuk: You may be an asshole, I did laugh at your blog. The South Park automatons comic was pretty clever.

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  75. But... I was supposed to be the biggest asshole on the blog. :(


    I WANT MY TITLE BACK, YUK YUK! GET OUT OF HERE!

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  76. Was that even the real Yuk Yuk?

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  77. Man, impostering me would be so simultaneously easy and pointless. I should get a profile. Possibly with a less stupid name.

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  78. Person Numbah OneJuly 19, 2009 at 8:21 AM

    Hey guys, I suck ass turd cocks, and Dr. Horrible and Randall and I had a three-way.

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  79. MY NAME IS THE DUMB

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  80. Hey you know what was great about Dr. Horrible? I didn't have to wait until the next comic was up to read about the previous one

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  81. Haha, YukYuk trolled Doctor Horrible so bad that he shat his pants and made a fake YukYuk post to argue against.

    If only he had this much balls when talking to Randall we wouldn't be having this conversation.

    Next time just put on a sockpuppet show for us Horrible you big faggot.

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  82. Let's not blow our entire load on Dr. Horrible's face just yet. I'm sure the IRC chatlog is gayer and even more embarrassing than the IM convo.

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  83. I would pay money to see that. I would regret it immediately and demand you give my money back, but you won't and then I'll go sulk and pretend to be a space cowboy. :( Give it back, man.

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  84. HAHAHA DISREGARD THAT DR. HORRIBLE AND I ARE BEST FRIENDS

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  85. Oh, how horrible that must be.

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  86. And what's up with Amanda? Is that WHORE ABLE to criticize anyone?

    Whore Able?

    Dr. Whore Able?

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  87. Anon 12:09:

    You have 20 seconds before I hunt you down and kill you for making such a whore able pun.

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  88. wait since when was coviza one of my superfans? I DEMAND ANSWERS

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  89. It's simple: Randall has broken the universe.

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  90. i will call you coviza and you will like it, bitch

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  91. you will call me "mistress rob", SIR.

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  92. so far you guys have called me a whore and a seacow-great-white-shark mix.

    the internet hurts =(

    are coviza and rob our resident dom/sub couple now

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  93. i do not approve of where this is going.

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  94. I agree, Amanda's a CLASSY whore

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