phrenology can predict phunny?

February 19, 2007 at 2:23 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Chortle : The UK Comedy Guide : Funny face

This is the perfect face for comedy, scientists claim.

A new study claims that most successful comedians having similar facial features, with a round face, small forehead, wide nose, large eyes and big lips – as illustrated by this composite picture.

Psychologist Dr Anthony Little, who carried out the research, believes that the contermorary comic who most closely matches this ideal is Ricky Gervais – with features that win over an audience before he cracks his first joke .

Dr Little, an expert in how we perceive facial features, said: ‘The features most likely to mark out male comedians for success are predominately soft and feminine.’ ‘These imply that the person may be agreeable and co-operative. In the same way that infants are pre-programmed to respond to the warmth and approachability of a mother’s face, soft feminine features put us at ease and encourage us to relax. This is conducive to laughter and enjoyment.’

He studied the facial features of 20 leading comics to come up with his conclusion, including Peter Kay, Lee Evans, Jack Dee, Jimmy Carr, Tommy Cooper and Harry Hill. And after morphing all their features together, he created the composite image representing the perfect comedy face – which Dr Little decided looked most like Gervais.

The Extras star told The Independent: ‘I was shocked when I saw the results of the study. All these years I assumed my global success as a comedian was down to my acute observations, expert directorial rendering and consummate skills as a performer. ‘Turns out it’s because I’ve got a fat, girly face.’

Dr Little’s research also suggested that the public figures who might make the best stand-ups – at least based on their face – include David Cameron and Wayne Rooney.

His research at the University of Stirling was commissioned by the Jongleurs Comedy Club chain.

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