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‘Anti-jokes’ that definitely won’t make you laugh

Anna Shi
11 марта 2020

Anti-jokes is a kind of specific humor where the speaker telling something in an exaggerating serious manner which is intentionally not funny, or lacking in intrinsic meaning. Anti-jokes lean on the expectation on the part of the audience of something ridiculous, hilarious and when the story is over, the irony itself became comedic value, they are reverse gags that will either have you laughing or rolling your eyes. Different pranks and hoaxes could be determined as anti jokes. Have you ever heard about regular jokes, but what about making up some ‘anti-jokes’?

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1. What means “anti” in anti-jokes?

The highlight of such type of the jokes is based on the absence of surpise climax. The narration, predicted as a joke in the end has no a punchline in it. This kind of narrative based on the expectation of funny conclusion.

The most common example of anti-joke is the story of a shaggy dog. Linguists counted many variations. There are many variations of the beginning of the story, from surreal to frightening. The storyline itself is very confusing, long. It can abound in unusual plot twists. Some events in a comic story may be repeated several times. The listener is easily involved in the story, follows the twists of the plot. The denouement may be different, depending on the mood of the storyteller.

The story may end with the weak spoonerism. It can also break off at any place, without any rationale. The listener is waiting for the denouement, the final funny chord, the place after which it is meant to smile or laugh. The listener, instead of laughing, remains in a deep misunderstanding. He wants to know the end of the joke, the minutes of anticipation are wasted.

2. Antijokes: the most common ones

The magical atmosphere of anti-joke is that the listener is waiting for a smart conclusion, perhaps even with a philosophical connotation. The climactic is completely absent and forces a person to invent something for further imagination. As eye-roll-inducing as they can be they completely negate the idea of a funny story. Some jokes of this kind can actually be funny, but more often they laugh at the fact that jokes, in fact, are not.

Knock knock joke.

— Who’s there?

— To.

— To who?

— No, “to whom.”

What is this joke about? In fact, that someone came to someone. He knocks on the door. Instead of answering the question of who has come, who stands behind the door, the guest begins to point out to the owner to grammatical mistake. Did he come for this? There is a climax and denouement.

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A horse walks into a bar. Several of the patrons quickly get up and leave, realizing the potential danger in the situation.

What is this joke about? is there even a little grain for laughter? Or is it like stating a fact? If this is a fact, then what could be funny? The listener wants to hear the continuation of the story, or an explanation, why the regulars were scared of the horse. They hurt the horse and it came to take revenge? In any case, the information is not enough to have fun.

What did the farmer say after he lost his tractor?

— “Where’s my tractor?”

This is very logical and not funny. The first answer that came to mind after the question should be just that. It is ridiculous that the answer is devoid of zest, it is too obvious and predictable. But such logic makes you smile because of the evidence.

— What did Buzz Lightyear say to Woody?

— A lot. There were three movies, and a couple short films too.

This is another striking example illustrating the logical answer that formed the basis of the joke. It's ridiculous that the answer is so obvious! If you pause between the question and give the listener the opportunity to sort out or propose the answer, then he will laugh at the simplicity of the answer. The listener will remember the funny moments of the dialogue between the characters of the cartoon, but still will not give the right answer. Because it does not exist! Any option fits into the storyteller’s answer.

— What does one Frenchman say to the other?

— I have no idea; I don’t speak French.

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To make the joke more ridiculous, you can first describe the appearance of that French, their age, to talk about their marital status. The denouement will be really funny then! The secret and magic of success lies in its simplicity.

Were you expecting another punch line from this anti-joke? It can be everywhere: confused in a too deep philosophical sense, or completely devoid of this meaning. Trading traditional humor for groan-inducing literal punch lines, these anti-jokes challenge the idea of what a joke can be—and we bet they’ll still make you laugh. A joke that puts you in an awkward position makes you wonder if everything is okay with a sense of humor? If a joke was announced, but it’s not funny for you and there is no smile on your face, then maybe not everything is in order? This is a big question mark for sensitive people.

What’s the best anti-joke you know?

Keep up your health eat an apple a day and add to your diet an avocado.

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