Steve Martin GREG LENBURG, RANDY SKRETVEDT, and JEFF LENBURG - Essay

GREG LENBURG, RANDY SKRETVEDT, and JEFF LENBURG

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Much has been written about the "new wave" comedy of the late seventies. It's been defined as a backlash against the comedy of the sixties, which was preoccupied with social and political commentary. New wave comedy is not concerned with political issues. It's only concerned with silliness. In fact, Steve [Martin] has spoken proudly of deliberately weeding out anything in his act that has legitimate meaning. (p. 113)

Steve has said that comedian Jack Benny was one of his idols when he was growing up. He sees a similarity between his character and Benny's. Both characters have glaring flaws, yet they pretend to be unaware of them, even though they really know better. Benny perpetually insisted that he...

(The entire section is 1046 words.)