James Parker presents a clear analysis of Ricky Gervais and Russell Brand, and their diverse approaches to comedy in this month’s The Atlantic.
As he points out, Gervais is a card-carrying atheist. Brand, too, may well be an atheist, but in Parker’s commentary on this clip, Brand is less focused on metaphysics and more interested in a bit of flirtatious humor with the interviewer. Or, as the author points out, Brand’s “sexual wattage of his grip.”
I admire Parker’s argument that Gervais’ schtick is centered on “littleness”: the details, the micro, the intricacies of his topic. Brand, on the other hand, is driven more by a post-modern, gender-bending approach to humor. Different approaches to a brainy sort of comedy.