We’re looking at the ten basic elements of writing humor. Number nine is Exaggeration and Understatement. Budweiser’s Real Men of Genius commercials were a great example of humorous exaggeration. Saluting such heroes as “Mr. Tiny Dog Clothing Manufacturer,” “Mr. Movie Theater Ticket Ripper Upper,” and “Mr. Backyard Bug Zapper Inventor,” these 30-60 second ads made the ridiculous sublime. You can see a selection of them here: 

The ultimate understatement occurs in The Naked Gun where a car crashes into a fireworks factory. 

Right. “Nothing to see here.”

In my book, Chasing Adonis (on sale now for 99 cents!), when witness for the prosecution, Adara, has to be moved for her protection, she discusses the particulars with her police escort.

“I’m a little inexperienced at this. What does one pack when running away from criminals?”

“Bare necessities,” he replied without missing a beat. “Enough clothing for at least a week at a time, but no more than ten days’ worth. Sensible shoes. And keep the cosmetics to a minimum. You’ll be spending most of your time indoors anyway so excessive makeup is a waste of effort and space.”

Adara bit her tongue until it hurt. Another poke at the ultra-feminine looking woman who doesn’t have sense enough to leave her favorite purple eye shadow at home when faced with a life-threatening crisis? Did he really think she was that stupid? Well, she couldn’t just let that comment go without giving something back to him.

“I guess that means I shouldn’t pack my g-string and pasties, huh?” 

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