Comedy of menace - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
What Is Comedy of Menace? (with pictures) - wiseGEEK
Pinter is credited with the invention of a new dramatic style known as 'Comedy of menace' which is an offshoot of the seminal 'Theater of Absurd'. Comedy of Menace is a kind of psychological drama in which supposedly secure space is contested by characters who are the embodiments of each other fears, insecurities or latent sexuality. It is a kind of comedy in which laughter in some or all situations is accompanied by some impending disaster. The comedy frightens and unsettles. The Absurd in Pinter's plays comes from menace. Some of the many features of Comedy of menace can be summed up as, plausibility of hidden danger, apparent normality, a sense of impending disaster, use of irony where communication is useless, surrealistic confusion that obscure or distort facts, use of place that is violated by outsiders. Menace and fear are not external elements as Pinter opines "they do not come from extraordinary, sinister people, but from you and me, it is all a matter of circumstances"
Help defining "comedy of menace"? | Yahoo Answers
Between 1957 and 1963, Pinter explores the problem of communication in particular, submission to power, isolation, insecurity. These are the works associated with the “theater of the absurd”, and that some call “comedy of menace”.
The term "comedy of menace" comes from the subtitle of one of David Campton's plays, The Lunatic View: A Comedy of Menace. A reviewer picked up on it and used it when writing about certain playwrights.For my drama class I need to write down what comedy of menace is. On all the websites I've been looking on the definition are too complicated for my to grasp exactly what 'comedy of menace' is.But, in certain plays (like those by Campton & Harold Pinter, for example), it is quite possible for a playwright to create both humor and menace in the same play and even at the same time in the play (for instance, a character might joke about a bad situation he finds himself in, while he prepares a gun to deal with his situation - that is an example from one of the comedies of menace). The playwright's objective in mixing comedy & the threat of menace is to produce certain effects (like set up dramatic tension or make the audience think a character is a weasel because they are acting nice or funny, but planning to do something evil) or to convey certain social or political ideas (for ex., don't trust lawyers or politicians) to the audience.This phrase is part of the title of a British play called The Lunatic View: a Comedy of Menace, by David Campton. Irving Ward, a critic in the 1950s, emphasized the phrase when writing a review of the plays of Harold Pinter. Ward used "comedy of menace" in a review of several of Pinter's works, although at the time he had seen only one, The Birthday Party.