When the straight man serves no specific comic purpose, but acts as a device to make the comic look good, he is known as a stooge. The pair had never worked together on stage (they did as of 1940), though both had worked in vaudeville—Stan Laurel with Charlie Chaplin as part of Fred Karno's Army and Oliver Hardy as a singer. Light entertainment in Britain in the 1970s was dominated by Morecambe and Wise, who enjoyed impressive ratings, especially on their Christmas specials. Most of the most successful double acts in the early 2000s take their inspiration from the odder strain of double-act comedy spearheaded by Reeves and Mortimer. Their characters are a pair of sad, pathetic losers forced together by their mutual hopelessness. The double act format can also be used in presenting noncomedic information in an entertaining manner, such as Savage/Hyneman pair of the Discovery Channel's MythBusters (which Savage stated was unintentional when they began the series but naturally grew into a double act as the result of their own conflicting personalities). In Germany Tünnes and Schäl (since 1803/1850s), two Cologne puppet theater characters, fit to the concept of fool and straight man.
They provided the link between music hall and modern comedy for double acts. The series I Love Lucy was known for its double acts, and Lucille Ball served as foil to both her husband Desi Arnaz and to Vivian Vance. A common trend in sitcoms is to place the double act in a situation where they are forced together through uncontrollable circumstance.
Many modern-day YouTube Channels like to use this trope to their advantage.
During WWII Tran and Helle appeared in a number of short films to deter Germans from actions detrimental to Germany's war effort or security.
The two would bicker but endured a relationship of mutual respect. Find out with this psychology quiz. Even male-female sketch troupes seem hard to sustain, to judge by the experience of Fat Tongue. Further acts followed. In many of the sketches (especially the Pete and Dud exchanges) Cook played the domineering know-it-all (who knows nothing) and Moore the put-upon dimwit (who also knows nothing). In fact, Smith and Jones showed blatant disregard for their predecessors, openly mocking the Two Ronnies (this may have been a factor in Ronnie Barker's decision to retire from comedy in the late 1980s.). Laurel could loosely be described as the comic, though the pair were one of the first not to fit the mold in the way that many double acts do, with both taking a fairly equal share of the laughs. This often leads to slapstick violence, such as hitting each other with frying pans. Witness Ade Edmondson milking the Southampton live theatre audience below. A double act (also known as a comedy duo) is a form of comedy originating in the British music hall tradition, and American vaudeville, in which two comedians perform together as a single act. As the partnership progressed into the often-improvised Derek and Clive dialogues, these light-hearted attempts to make Moore laugh became, as a result of Cook's growing insecurity and alcoholism, aggressive attacks on the defenseless Moore. Despite the names often given to the roles, the straight man is not always humorless, nor is it always the comic who provides the act's humor.
The Simpsons, The Wicker Man (original! You can watch their ‘experimental’ home makeover below. Though vaudeville lasted into the 1930s, its popularity waned because of the rise of motion pictures. Are you secretly a sadist? The mid-to-late 1970s saw a resurgence in American double acts.
Morecambe and Wise had dominated British light entertainment throughout the 1970s, but their presence waned in the early 1980s. Rik Mayall and Ade Edmondson combined their success in sitcoms (The Young Ones) and as a double act (The Dangerous Brothers) in 1991 when they created Bottom. Watch a selection of ‘Fantasy Football League’ clips below. This dominance was accentuated by the difference in height between the two, and the speed of Cook's mind, which meant that he could ad lib and force Moore to corpse in a Pete and Dud dialogue, leaving him helpless to respond.
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