ENG 3U: Applying the Scientific Method to Comedies

The next sentence is one of the strangest I have ever written.

Today, your goal is to apply the Scientific Method to comedies.

Still with me? Good. Let me explain. Yesterday, you listened to a lecture about the Journey Pattern. Remember? Orphans, talismans, thresholds, and shadows, right? Well, there is another kind of narrative that is just as important in storytelling: the comedy.

But, you may say to yourself, I get comedies. I watch them all of the  time. Well, if this is the case, you should find deconstructing them to be very straightforward

What I don’t get, however, is the Scientific Method. Sure I can use it in Science class, you continue in your head, but in English? No clue, Mr. Pedrech. You have officially lost it.

Fair points. Still, I feel obligated to point out that you have been talking to yourself for the last few sentences, so you are no position to judge me too harshly.

The Scientific Method is really about understanding and solving problems. We take our observations and construct rules that we can use to organize and categorize those things we have yet to observe. Today, we will do the same thing with comedies.

  1. I will ask you a question about some aspect of comedies.
  2. I will give you a few minutes to think about a response. Each response needs a clear and specific reference to any comedy that you think is relevant.
  3. You will post your response to a website called Today’s Meet (I will show you this in a moment).
  4. We will peruse everyone’s responses and construct a general rule about this aspect of comedy (See? The Scientific Method)

The Questions

  • What is the main character of a comedy usually like?
  • How is authority portrayed in comedy?
  • How realistic is the plot of a comedy?
  • How do the actions of the main character isolate him/her from others?
  • What kind of characters get what they “deserve?”

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