When the Department of Defense constructed ARPANET as the primordial Internet in the late 1960s, the real idea was to build a network of computers on which office workers might one day share all manner of funny-ha-ha undetected by office managers and other killjoys.
And the project has proven to be a resounding success!
After searching high and low through the YouTubes, Tumblrs, Twitters and podcasts, we've cobbled together a list of funny places on the web for today's desk jockies to laugh at--in lieu of actually, you know, working. Just as the Department of Defense intended!
Take note that we kept out hilarious, but reliable venues such as The Onion, FunnyOrDie, and CollegeHumor, instead focusing on less traveled material. Enjoy! Just remember to keep some spreadsheet open for when the office snitch walks by.
NOTE: We promise not to include anything NSFW below, but we can't guarantee that other content you might find on these sites will be completely "SFW" in every office environment.
Bad Lip Reading
What is it? A brilliant YouTube channel featuring exquisitely re-dubbed clips of music videos, TV shows, political debates, and sports events. All the dialogue is seamlessly replaced with nonsensical words that might be coming from the subject's mouths.
Why is it funny? Because it works so perfectly. It has that subtle level of not-rightness because the wrong words fit in so well.
Rating: R: Mostly clean, however sometimes the familiar characters say things you wouldn't say in front of your grandma.
Where can I find it? Over on the YouTube.
Animals Being [email protected]
What is it? Being a jerk is not endemic to our species. In fact, as this collection of GIFs shows, many animals have their jerky sides, too.
Why is it funny? Because the Internet's strong pro-animal bias demands a counterweight. This site meticulously details the little incidents that prove animals are just as horrible as people--if not worse. For example, perhaps this puppy shouldn't have been licking this turtle, but that turtle didn't have to take it there.
Rating: PG-13: Mostly clean, but there are some feces-oriented posts.
The Eric André Show
What is it? Adult Swim's surreal--and occasionally nightmarish--anti-talk show from comedian Eric André. The show does a spot-on impersonation of a 1980s public access talk show's bottom shelf production value, right down to the vintage era cameras. When André isn't harassing the occasional B-list guests, the show--perhaps cruelly--brings on people from the fringes of society who shouldn't be on TV to impersonate celebrities.
Why is it funny? Because André and company have made a high art of not making sense. Viewers can't help but have a few genuine (if not, guilty) belly laughs along the way. The show is a series of bizarre non-sequiturs peppered with jump cuts to man-on-the-street interviews (usually consisting of André being a jerk to the unsuspecting public).
Brow: A low-brow show for high-brow people.
Rating: R: Due to language and cartoonish violence.
Where can I find it? Adult Swim's website features various clips in addition to full 11-minute episodes from the first season. Episodes can also be purchased through iTunes and Amazon. The second season airs in October.
Reasons My Son is Crying
What is it? A crowd-sourced photo/caption blog that makes fun of small children for crying over things that small children cry about (so, absolutely everthing and absolutely nothing).
Why is it funny? Because it is a subtle release valve for the pent-up truth that society keeps hidden: Children are petty, horrible, vain, and bizarre little creatures.
Where can I find it? Over on Tumblr.
The Jo(h)n Daly Project!
What is it? A web prank experiment in which comedian Jon Daly tasks visitors to blog, like, and link Photoshopped images of him combined with pro-golfer John Daly to affect Google's search algorithm. Jon has been kind of successful with it: Try a Google image search "Jon Daly" as opposed to "John Daly."
Why is it funny? It's fun to participate in a group prank that can have real effects on a Web service that we all use every day. Being a jerk as part of a group is fun.
Rating: R: Not due to the actual site, but because if you conduct an unfiltered image search for the golfer "John Daly," you are linked to images of him with topless golf groupies--which apparently really exist.
Where can I find it? Over here.
Small Celebrity Faces
What is it? A Photoshop blog consisting of famous celebrities whose faces have been digitally altered so as to appear shrunken, while the head remains intact. The small face scheme has become a genre onto itself--there are other tiny face blogs out there--but this blogspot venue is the best.
Why is it funny? That's a good question. It is funny. But perhaps it works because it's so disorienting. Things are sometimes funny just because they force our brains to expand the concept of reality. If you enjoy this blog, you may also be entertained by the far more disturbing Actress Without Teeth tumblr.
Rating: G, although this might scare the pants of some small kids and celebrity public relations people.
Where can I find it? Over on Blogspot.
Sandwiches Replacing Phones
What is it? If I tell you Photoshop was involved, then the name basically explains it all.
Why is it funny? It makes us question our relationship to a ubiquitous facet of modern digital life. And for some reason, any meme involving sandwiches tends to work, no matter how labored.
Where can I find it? Over on Tumblr.
What is it? A twice-weekly podcast featuring comedians Kulap Vilaysack and Howard Kremer as they welcome guests to deconstruct the week's top charting movies and songs. The majority of guests are stand-ups and sitcom writers that those outside of comedy circles may not be familiar with (though past stoppers-by have included Patton Oswalt, Zach Galifianakis, and Sarah Silverman).
Why is it funny? Good conversation. The main force of show is Howard Kremer (who perceptive listeners of a certain age will remember from the short-lived MTV series Austin Stories) as he uses the charts and his guests to offer his particular riffs on life and pop culture. Note: Like most podcasts, you may not find Who Charted? funny on the first listen, but it gets better once you understand the spirit of the show--so, give it three listens before passing judgment.
Rating: PG-13: It's mostly clean, though is prone to the occasional sex talk.
Neil Hamburger (@NeilHamburger)
"CLOSED FOR VIOLATION OF PUBLIC HEALTH CODE 3.29A (RATS/VERMIN)" @Wendys: What does the sign in front of your local Wendy's say today?
What is it? The tweets of comedian Greg Turkington's (officially Twitter-verified) character Neil Hamburger, a hack lounge comedian stuck in the wrong decade. Hamburger viciously attacks any corporate brand tweet that dare asks a rhetorical question. @TacoBell and @Axe are singled out for particular ridicule. As a side note, the real Greg Turkington's personal Twitter account boasts a good 70 thousand fewer followers than Neil Hamburger's.
Why is it funny? Because watching someone troll the hell out of corporations attempting to be hip online is just funny. Big warning: Neil's brand of humor is not for everyone. Hamburger's "stand up" is more of a NSFW performance art featuring extremely tasteless jokes about pop culture figures that only occasionally makes sense: "What do you get when you mix The Red Hot Chili Peppers with an Octopus? A junkie with eight arms to shoot-up into." #Boom. But the Hamburger Twitter feed is somewhat cleaner.
Hamburger's brand of comedy buried deep below multiple strata of irony won't be for everyone's taste. However, the larger joke of Hamburger's heroically antisocial tweets is that someone out there is sufficiently dedicated to take time out of his busy day to troll the poor freelancer or intern charged with manning @HormelFoods' Twitter account.
Brow: So low that it became high again.
Rating: R: Most content here is quite NSFW. It is intentionally offensive, so just know that going in, or avoid it altogether.
Where can I find it? Over on the Twitter.
Full House Reviewed
What is it? A blog that provides needlessly in-depth reviews of each and every episode of the horrible Clinton-era television program, Full House, which ran for eight logic-free seasons.
The blog, which has tasked itself with taking on all 192 episodes in chronological order, has made its way through only the 23rd episode of season 7, so it still has more than a full season's worth of cornball fodder to work with.
Why is it funny? First of all, the show itself is bad to the point of being flat-out bizarre. That alone is good for a few laughs, especially because the blog points every rediculous detail in the shows.
Secondly, it's funny how the blog treats this thin subject matter with a seriousness that borders on obsessiveness. Take this line, pulled pretty much at random from one of the episode posts: "Making sure that Michelle gets whatever she wants is all this show is even about anymore."
The writer of this blog seems far more serious about the show's characters than the writers of the show must have been. I imagine a group of people sitting around a conference table eating Bob's Big Boy burgers, casually tossing off storylines and one-liners while they watch a Dodgers game on TV.
Rating: PG-13: Caution: there's some salty language here and there in the blog, so avoid this one if you don't like that kind of language.
Where can I find it? Over here.
Bad Joke Cat (@BadJokeCat)
What do you call a fake noodle? An impasta!
What is it? A twitter account by a cat who tells really bad jokes.
Why is it funny? You're being told a horrible joke by a cat who has just told you you are about to hear a horrible joke (told by a cat). Comedy gold!
Rating: G. Everything is clean here.
Where can I find it? Over on the Twitter.
Jash: This video site from truly talented comedians Sarah Silverman, Reggie Watts, Michael Cera, Eric Wareheim, Tim Heidecker, and Reggie Watts should be funny, but isn't quite. Yet! So watch this space, because all those talented people should make something funny soon. A monkey left in a room with a typewriter and all that...
White Ninja: This brilliantly non-sensical, one-step-above-a-stick-figure web comic never got as popular as it should have beyond Web comic circles, though Matt Groening is reportedly a fan. It has been on official hiatus for more than a year, but if you've never seen any of it's 1,300+ comics, then it's all new to you!
Sad And Useless: A good collection of (mostly Tumblr-centered) web-memes making their rounds. It's good to know because you're busy and don't have time to search for the latest Vin Diesel photo mash-ups.
Comedy Central (website): They have lots of bad shows, but their website features full free episodes of the good shows such as The Daily Show, Colbert Report, South Park, Workaholics, and some new and promising shows like The Jeselnik Offensive, and Inside Amy Schumer.
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