Steve Hely writes to me:
I'm a real admirer of your blog. You offer such great recommendations. But it seems you rarely recommend any comedy. Are there any books, TV shows, movies, etc. that have made you laugh in recent years?
It's well-known that comedy hits don't usually export well to other countries, because comedy is so culturally specific and also so subjective. So these are not recommendations. What I find funny is this:
1. On TV: Curb Your Enthusiasm and the better ensemble pieces of Seinfeld and also The Ali G Show. The best Monty Python skits are very funny to me, although I find their movies too long and labored. I find stand-up comics funny only when I am there in person.
2. Movies: The last funny movie I saw was I Love You, Man. I like most classic comedies, though without necessarily finding them very funny. Danny Kaye's The Court Jester is a good comedy which most people don't watch any more. I enjoy the chaotic side of W.C. Fields in short doses. Jerry Lewis is funny sometimes, plus there is Pillow Talk. I like the first forty minutes or so of Ferris Bueller. Stardust Memories is my favorite Woody Allen film, though I like many of them.
3. Books: I don't find books of fiction funny, blame it on me. I do find David Hume, and other classic non-fiction authors, to be at times hilarious.
On YouTube, I find the economics comic Yoram Bauman funny. Colbert can be very funny.
I wonder how many dimensions are required to explain or predict a person's taste in comedy?