Analysis of Jokes

Contest Observations — The Perfect Pet

What one person finds funny is not the same as the next person.  My favorite line was not picked as a top-three line by the judges.  That doesn’t mean anyone is right or wrong.  That’s just the way it is.  Humor is subjective.

There is more than one angle to a joke.  Just as there are a variety of ways to approach creating a joke…there are just as many ways to receive and “get” a joke.  Not everyone does it the same way.

Let’s look at some of the connections and triggers that helped people write lines for The Perfect Pet.

Key Words:  Words associated with a group or profession.
Stand-up comedian:  Hamster (key word HAM)
Comic:  Mockingbird (key word MOCK)
Bowler:  Alley Cat (key word Bowling ALLEY)
Weight lifter:  Mussels (key word MUSCLES)

Fork (sub-category)
A musician:  A doe, a deer, a female deer (sub-category of DEER–Doe)
Bill Gates:  70 billion male Deer (sub-category of DEER–Buck)

Non-Animals (insects and fish)
Tall fathers:  Daddy long legs (Spider)
Wig fitter:  Heron (Fish)

Non-Animals (but sounds like animal)
Chiropractor:  Charlie Horse
Candy maker:  Chocolate Moose

Similar Sounds
Shakespearian actor:  Two bees (TO BE)
Impatient Uncle:  Antelope (AUNT ELOPE)
Wig fitter:  Heron (HAIR ON)
Master of no trades:  Jackal (JACK OF ALL)

Adding a topper
Shakespearian actor:  Two bees, or not
Noah:  Aardvark, in pairs

Cliche
Shakespearian actor:  Two bees (To be or not to be)
Circus ringmaster:  Dog and Pony (Dog and pony show)
Someone standing on the other side of the road:  A chicken (uses chicken joke cliche)

Implied punchline
Sitcom Producer:  Hyena in a trash can (Canned Laughter–a little work is required on the part of the listener)
Pear farmer:  Partridge (the connector word TREE is not mentioned)
Lingerie designer:  Zebra (Z is an implied cup size)

Song Lyrics
A musician:  A doe, a deer, a female deer (Do Re Mi)
Pear farmer:  Partridge (12 Days of Christmas)

Word with double meaning
Dermatologist:  Mole
CIA Agent:  Mole

Action verb
Boxer:  Slug

Physical object
A baseball player:  A bat
Construction worker:  Crane

Reversal/Palindrome
Dyslexic God:  Dog