Thoughts on Norm Macdonald and Cancelling Comedians

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It might sound simplistic to say that Norm Macdonald was a guy who *loved* jokes, but that actually has pretty deep meaning. Jokes are some of the most complex, intricate, delicate ways we communicate ideas, and Norm Macdonald was one of the best ever. And as legendary as Norm Macdonald was, some people not only don’t get him, but they don’t get humor at all. Seriously.

Comedians have a language of joke-telling, and if you don’t understand that language, you’re a lot more likely to be bothered by their humor. What’s that mean for people trying to be funny on YouTube, Twitter, and TikTok? Are they facing an epidemic of cancellation by people who just don’t understand?

And for the people who do love and appreciate humor, why do so many of them think it’s so easy? No one would think they could ever be like Lebron James at basketball, but too many people think they’re just as funny as who they see on TV or the internet. It’s delusional, but it’s also kind of understandable. 

We wanted to remember Norm and give some extra attention to what he’s done for comedy and for the careers of so many people we know, including his best moments (one of which was making Sarah Silverman severely uncomfortable), and then hit some Patron questions ranging from tone markers on internet speech, an IRL episode, and living out a meme.

Thanks to everyone who showed up to hang out with us, these episodes really are some of the most enjoyable because we get to talk to you through the whole show. And a special thanks to the Patrons who make each and every episode possible. 


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Hosts: Kevin Lieber and Matt Tabor

Produced and Edited by Ben Webster →

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Opening Animation: Kidmograph

City Animation: Eric Langlay

“The Create Unknown” is produced by Unknown Media.


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