slapstick was our Word of the Day on 10/27/2015. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of slapstick in a Sentence
an actor whose roles range from slapstick to serious drama
a lowbrow comedy that relies heavily on slapstick for its laughs
Recent Examples of slapstick from the Web
At the root of the problem is that snoring has for decades been relegated to the realm of slapstick comedy: goofy, crass, funny.
The play, now getting a very kinetic staging at Ion Theatre in Hillcrest, revolves around its own sometimes odd combination of political thriller and almost slapstick-y humor.
He was submerged in pie-in-the-face slapstick from his earliest years.
As slapstick as that may sound, Jonathan Swan of Axios assesses the risk of a train wreck over the border wall as quite high: The wall is no metaphor to Trump.
Before her nuanced, deeply moving performance, plus-size people were just the butt of the joke: unlovable slapstick vehicles designed to shower the lithe protagonist with praise and flattery.
Stealing from the rich and giving to the poor has never been so silly as in this slapstick variation of the folktale about a bow-bearing noble bandit.
Scarlett Johansson, then still a teenager, has grown up into more interesting, less blank roles, and the post-Kingpin, non-slapstick-dependent, late-middle-aged Bill Murray persona has become a little too familiar over the years.
Captain Billy Bones, entertains with magic, slapstick and sound effects. 10:30 a.m. Wolf Trap, Children’s Theatre-in-the-Woods, 1551 Trap Rd.,
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'slapstick.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
The idea that knocking people about made for good comedy dates as far back as the Greco-Roman theater, where clowns rambunctiously "attacked" one another onstage. The object from which the word slapstick derives, however, was invented in Italy in the 16th century. Renaissance comedy typically featured stock characters placed in ridiculous situations, and one such ubiquitous character was Harlequin, whose brilliant costuming made him easily recognizable. Harlequin was given to wielding a paddle which was designed to make a terrible noise when he hit someone, usually to the delight of the audience. This paddle was eventually known in English as a "slapstick," and it became a symbol of that type of highly physical comedy. The word slapstick then came to refer to the comedy itself.
First Known Use of slapstick
SLAPSTICK Defined for English Language Learners
Seen and Heard
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