Did Johnny Depp And Tim Allen Prove Dan Aykroyd’s Point? Why Goldie Hawn’s Comedy Got ‘Snatched’ [Opinion]

Johnny Depp, Tim Allen, and Goldie Hawn have all experienced the bite of anti-comedy, and the loss of humor in America, and perhaps the world. Dan Aykroyd recently addressed the plight of comedy in recent years. Aykroyd, quoted in Variety, proclaimed it vital for humanity to fix their anxiety about comedy.

“[Laughter] is psycho-chemically necessary for mankind to survive,”

Johnny Depp and Tim Allen’s comedy failures are at vastly different ends of the spectrum. Tim Allen’s conservative comedy got viewers and laughs. Still, Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing was taken off TV.

Johnny Depp’s Glastonbury attempt at liberal humor didn’t make anyone laugh. Johnny Depp’s joke became another “witch hunt,” to use one of Johnny Depp’s favorite phrases.

Tim Allen’s Friday night ABC hit Last Man Standing has been canceled, disappointing 8 million Tim Allen fans who still want to know why Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing was canceled despite stellar Friday night ratings.

If Johnny Depp and Tim Allen represent opposite ends of the spectrum, Goldie Hawn and Amy Schumer should be the middle. Johnny Depp and Tim Allen saw the downside at both extremes.

Goldie Hawn and Amy Schumer’s recent film Snatched did not do well at the box office. Goldie Hawn’s Snatched joined all the other recent comedy movies made in recent years in its lukewarm box office reception.

Johnny Depp, Tim Allen, Goldie Hawn, and Amy Schumer are striking out. The question has to be put forward for the sake of mankind according to Dan Aykroyd: why is America’s comedy, whether good, bad, raunchy, clean, liberal, conservative, PC or not, failing?

Johnny Depp didn’t get any laughs for his bad joke. No one really knows what Johnny Depp was even talking about, from the tiny sliced-up clips of Johnny Depp on the news, but it was interpreted as liberal and even an assassination threat. Johnny Depp maintains that it was merely a poorly constructed joke.

Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing was conservative, morally traditional, and got a lot of laughs, but Tim Allen’s show also got shut down. Was Tim Allen’s cancellation, as the ABC network claims, just ABC moving away from comedy on Friday nights and nothing personal toward Tim Allen’s views?

Johnny Depp, unlike Goldie Hawn, Tim Allen, and Dan Aykroyd, isn’t a professional comedian. Johnny Depp’s films aren’t comedy films.

Goldie Hawn and Amy Schumer experienced first hand the failure of comedy in the box office. While Snatched isn’t exactly “a train-wreck” at $45.6 million, that figure is far from stellar according to Deadline. Not only that, but Amy Schumer’s Netflix special also bombed really badly in its viewer reviews.

Johnny Depp, when he is humorous, in moments of Pirates of the Caribbean or Sleepy Hollow, is removed from the current culture. It’s fantasy, so it is OK to laugh.

Johnny Depp, Tim Allen, Amy Schumer, and Goldie Hawn are all having trouble with 2017 comedy. Deadline writer Anthony D’Alessandro offered a hint or two for comedy writers. Citing Bad Moms, one of the few successful comedy films of this century, D’Alessandro suggests most comedies aren’t relatable.

“Many say that the key to [Bad Moms’] success stems from being a relatable comedy for the underserved older female crowd. Aside from serving as wish-fulfillment escapism for women over 25, [Bad Moms] touched on key domestic issues — work, marriage and raising kids —that mothers balance. And therein lies the trick to succeeding with a comedy in the current marketplace: Create stories that moviegoers can relate to.”

Are Tim Allen, Goldie Hawn, Amy Schumer, Dan Aykroyd, and even Johnny Depp free to say relatable things? Old-school comedians have expressed a lot of dismay with PC and say it is ruining comedy. For more on PC vs. comedy, see this from the Inquisitr.

Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing was something viewers could relate to. Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing was about a family. The family seemed realistic. Audiences related to the show, but perhaps that’s not what ABC wants to put forth to the divided audience.

Tim Allen Celebrating 100 episodes of Last Man Standing

Dan Aykroyd explained on PopPolitics that defusing political divisions is a major function of comedy in society according to Variety.

While Johnny Depp’s bad joke shocked and appalled audiences, Disney’s feathers remain unruffled by Johnny Depp’s comments. Even the Secret Service remained unconcerned according to Snopes. For more on the official response to Johnny Depp’s odd humor, see this from the Inquisitr.

Johnny Depp was not funny because his statement was shocking. Amy Schumer is said to be too mundane. Tim Allen gets viewers and laughs, but ABC canceled the show anyway. Many comedians complain that when politically correct standards prevent them from being funny, the end result is a decline in comedy.

Ben Stiller, quoted in Deadline, expressed his opinion of the troubled comedy industry.

“The movies and the general landscape have changed. [The studios are] making less of everything that’s not making them money.”

Tim Allen, Johnny Depp, Goldie Hawn, Dan Aykroyd, and Amy Schumer, as well as countless other comedians and comedy writers, are struggling with changes, according to Deadline. Deadline makes the point that what is funny has changed dramatically just in the past year, as they quote an unnamed movie distribution pro.

“Ya know, by the time these movies are greenlit two years out, a lot can change in regards to the nation’s sense of humor by the time of release. And you can definitely say that plenty has changed in America in recent months.”

Far from Tim Allen’s conservative family-friendly comedy, Aykroyd’s 1970s style views, Goldie Hawn’s adorable exploits, and Johnny Depp’s clumsy speaking style, Jordan Keppler is being heralded as the future of Comedy Central. So what is Keppler’s secret to success? Keppler is quoted in The Atlantic.

“I’m enlightened, I’m progressive, and I feel like I was put on this Earth to enact righteous change. a.k.a.: I’m a 2017 comedian. I have four brown-rice cookers, 12 gay friends, and five podcasts. I tweet blogs, meme thinkpieces and tumble GIFs. Powerful, thought-provoking GIFs.”

Johnny Depp doesn’t do social media, and Goldie Hawn would never find the time for a podcast series. Tim Allen might find all that stuff totally counter to his persona. So is all that really necessary? What about the demographic that doesn’t find the Daily Show and its clones like Jordan Keppler’s new show funny? What are they going to be given, to laugh about?

Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing was the last stand for comedy for a huge segment of society. Snatched, starring Goldie Hawn and Amy Schumer, wasn’t as well received as action and horror films that prosper without as many PC constraints.

John Stamos said everything is “so different” now, in an interview with Movie Fone.

“Now more than ever, is the time to celebrate who we are, try to figure out what being an American means to us now, right? Versus last year, even — it’s so different.”

Johnny Depp certainly noticed this, and so did Tim Allen. Amy Schumer and Goldie Hawn also missed hitting the nail on the head, but at least managed not to lose entirely. Snatched didn’t do that badly, compared to Tim Allen’s show being canceled or Johnny Depp’s painfully bad joke.

John Stamos continued.

“Just because we have different backgrounds, and different personal stories, we’re still linked by the values that we share, and by the love of this country that we have, no matter where we’re coming from, right?”

Tim Allen of Last Man Standing might agree with what John Stamos had to say next about the current erosion of values. It sounds like something Tim Allen would say.

“‘Values’ is an interesting word because I think decency is at an all time low now, and discord is high. We need to get together.”

John Stamos says America needs to come together. Dan Aykroyd thinks they need to come together for a laugh because comedy is vital to their health. Tim Allen got the laughs but Tim also got canceled. For whatever reason, Last Man Standing isn’t standing anymore.

Johnny Depp learned the hard way that it’s dangerous to be offensive. Goldie Hawn’s co-star Amy Schumer learned that if she keeps it too clean and PC like her Netflix special, she won’t be funny to most people.

America is divided in their taste in comedy. Hollywood isn’t giving a major segment of the population what they want in a comedy. As Dan Aykroyd points out, a good laugh is definitely needed.

Tim Allen was providing alternative comedy for one side of a polarized society. Is separate comedy really necessary? When can America come together for a good laugh?


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Johnny Depp, Goldie Hawn, Tim Allen, and Dan Aykroyd have their work cut out for them as they try to discover what comedy is in 2017.

[Featured Image by Kevin Winter, Mike Winkelmeyer, and Eric Charbonneau/Getty Images]