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Screen Comedy and Online Audiences

A new book by Birmingham School of Media lecturer Inger-Lise Bore will investigate the criteria we use to judge films and TV shows that are meant to be funny.

'Screen Comedy and Online Audiences', set for release on Thursday 1 June through Routledge, explores how we evaluate screen comedy, the methods on which we judge a show to be funny, and what it has to do with our social and cultural backgrounds. The book examines these questions through a study of audience responses posted to social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, as well as review sites, blogs and message boards.

The book demonstrates some of the ways in which we can adapt theories of humour and comedy to examine the practices of contemporary screen audiences, while offering new insights into how they negotiate the opportunities and constrictions of different online facilities to share their views and experiences.

Inger-Lise analyses a range of questions relating to comedy - what is the opinion of female comedians? How are romcoms, sitcoms and web comedies evaluated? And, conversely, what kind of comedy do viewers despise?

"'Screen Comedy and Online Audiences' is boldly, brilliantly diverse, offering up a multi-text exploration of how different modalities, hybrids and subgenres of screen comedy are valued (or not) by an equally diverse range of audiences," said Professor Matt Hills of the University of Huddersfield. "Inger-Lise also adopts a multi-sited approach, deftly analysing responses and reviews across the likes of Facebook, imdb, Twitter and YouTube. Brimming with insight, this book shows how indispensable fan/audience studies can be for understanding comedy’s cultural politics and affective resonances."

Inger-Lise teaches undergraduate modules on cultural theory, television and reality media, and co-leads our MA in Screen Studies.