I saw a post on Imgur about a Chewbacca mask that you could buy. I went and researched it and saw that it became famous because of a “Laughing Chewbacca Mask Lady.” I had to watch. (NOTE: just watch half way through, the first half isn’t the funny part).
I figured it would be funny… but not that gut-wrenching funny! I haven’t laughed like that in a very, very, long time. I literally cried. Cried. AT WORK!
I started watching other people’s reaction videos and most of them had the same reaction as me – cracking at the seams.
Then I came across a video where a dad watches it with his kids. Shown below:
And I found it interesting that the kids generally didn’t find it funny. I’d guess that if they watched it alone and didn’t have any laughing stimulus from dad then they would have barely cracked a smile. So I started thinking, what made this so incredibly funny to adults but almost irrelevant to kids?
The only thing I could think of is that the thing that is funny about this isn’t her laugh but rather the situation of the laughter and how crazy it gets. As adults we are always forced to be pillars of seriousness. Seldom do we just lose ourselves to laughter. Sure, we might laugh but never do we laugh so hard that we can’t stop laughing. So to see another adult find pure, unadulterated joy to where they couldn’t stop laughing over something as silly as a toy mask for a good 2 minutes is just pure joy to everyone. It doesn’t hurt that her laugh is contagious.
But for kids, they don’t quite have the life experience of “being and adult” so they don’t understand how silly this whole thing is nor do they understand how much adults probably envy her just losing it for once. To them it is just some lady laughing in a mask like a mad-woman.
Another way to think about it is if someone tells a joke you don’t get (either over your head or inside-joke) and everyone that is “in” on the joke thinks it is funny while you are lost on the outside because you don’t quite know what it means. You might chuckle a little at other people, but you don’t relate to the joke. I think the same thing is going on here with the kids – they just can’t relate to Chewbacca Mask Lady like adults do.
What do you think?
Also, on a side note… can you watch the video without laughing?