Dead Ant

Comics on Quora: 6 Sensible & Surreal Answers to The Internet’s Burning Questions

By DA Staff 13 April 2019

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While most standup comedians regularly upload content on their Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts, not many are active on Quora—the platform where users can throw out questions to be answered by other users. The ones who have surfaced there occasionally, have taken on a variety of questions. The questions and answers are usually pretty straightforward, but some have ventured into more absurd waters.

1.Why did Kanan Gill do the Shaadi.com advert?

Some years ago, Kanan Gill appeared in what can only be described as a cringe-worthy advertisement for the matrimonial website Shaadi.com.

A Quora user demanded to know why Gill had taken up such a clearly off-brand assignment, and Gill himself stepped up to answer the question. He explained that he had agreed to do it “to not piss off some important people.” And that he had not collected his cheque, though the amount was later transferred to him. The lesson for him, Gill said, was “Sometimes it’s better to piss off people.”

2. Why do some people hate Shah Rukh Khan?

Ok, Manik Mahna’s Quora answers are nothing like the others on this list. For one, he has only two. But both of these are so delightfully dark and absurd, that we just had to include them here. Nobody has a deader deadpan than Mahna on stage, and these answers too sound of a piece with that style. One is an answer to “Why do breakups hurt so much?” to which Mahna launches into an utterly bizarre tale that begins with the story of “one policeman’s struggle to avenge an entirely personal thing which has nothing to do with the police department as such, but he’s the kind of cop they support wholeheartedly because he isn’t corrupt, and that makes everyone else feel guilty.” Go here to read that one in full. And here’s his explanation of why some people hate Shah Rukh Khan.

3. Do you tailor your stand up act towards bookers/TV?

Sumit Anand has a pretty well populated Quora page, where he takes on questions ranging from “What Spanish stand up comedy shows do you suggest?” (Answer: “I recommend the ones with English subtitles.”) to “What inspired you to start as a stand up comedian?” (Answer: “Supreme failure in everything else.”) In one instance, he addressed the question of whether comics adapt their material depend on the audience or situation.

4. What is the best way to save money every month from my salary?

Anand also took it upon himself to answer this question about personal economics from a Quora user. His answer is remarkably practical for someone who, in his comedy, boasts about always staying in bed till it’s time to sleep again.

5. What is the role of a director in a standup special?

Aditi Mittal has been generous with her answers on Quora, putting out detailed posts about getting started in standup comedy. She also took the time to explain the importance of a director in a filmed standup special, which perhaps is less than obvious to the lay viewer, who assumes that all you have to do is position a camera and record the proceedings.

6. How do I promote my standup comedy special in a month’s time to draw the maximum crowd? I am a new comedian.

Reuben Kaduskar is known to most comedy viewers as a participant on Comicstaan’s first season. But to comedians he’s been known for years as a key figure in Mumbai, who has organised open mics and curated events and helped nurture what is now a thriving scene. Given that he’s a veteran who knows how much hard work it takes to make it, it’s understandable that he had little patience for an amateur with a question on promoting a special.

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