History Specials

Season 1 Episode 36

History of the Joke

Aired Unknown Feb 18, 2008 on The History Channel
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Episode Summary

History of the Joke
Get an inside look at the past, present and future of great joke-telling in this provocative journey to discover the secret ingredients of a great joke. Celebrated comedian Lewis Black's side-splitting adventure uncovers what it takes to tell the perfect joke timing, surprise, sex, pain, hard work, and plenty of humiliating failure all elements firmly rooted in ancient comedic tradition. Black not only looks to the past for the greatest joke, but finds living history among America's greatest joke tellers, including George Carlin, Robin Williams, Robert Klein, Kathy Griffin, Dave Attell and more revealing what inspires comedians to get into comedy, the historical elements of joking, including slapstick and physical comedy, and the nature of laughter. Will all this taken together the wisdom of the ancients, plus the experiences of today's hottest comedians reveal the perfect joke?moreless

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