So, Yesterday I discussed stretching a joke out by employing the newly invented rule of 6 (thank you thank you). Today I’m going to quickly discuss another way to subvert the Rule of Three… not that it necessarily needs subverting.
Now, today’s topic is the Overly Long Gag, a name I pulled from tvtropes.org. In the words of tvtropes: “The concept is that something happens repeatedly, to the point of boredom. Then it keeps going, to the point where it, in theory, actually becomes funny again. Essentially, the sheer length of the gag becomes the gag.”
The article goes on to mention the Sideshow Bob-Rake gag from the Simpsons. Knowing that The Boy loves the Simpsons I decided to see if he thought this extended gag was funny to him.
Me: So I was reading about Overly Long Gags online, like Side-Show Bob and the rakes.
The Boy: Oh My God! I love Side-show Bob and the Rakes. The noise he makes is so funny, seriously. It’s like a oooh!, well no it’s more like mmMGNGN! and he like shudders….. like this… and it just keeps going and now everytime he’s in an episode he steps on a rake and it hits him in the face. It reaches the point where you’re watching a sideshow bob episode and you’re just waiting for him to step on the rake- you actually feel cheated if he doesn’t, I think there was one episode when he didn’t step on one, and I was like: WHat?! but then the next episode with him he stepped on a rake I was like: Ok , there we go. And then I think there’s even one where his son steps on a little rake and you’re like: YES YES YES YES.
As I walked next to him I was thinking to myself: this is getting so overly long I feel like gagging myself. I also think he may have scared away a woman while punching the air on the YES YES YES’s.
Usually I am hard to please using the extended gag, but I do love traditions. And There is something to be said that comes from the pleasure of predicting what’s coming up. That said, nobody could have predicted or explained why the only video of Sideshow Bob and the Rakes is in black and white and in German.
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