Sometimes just text can’t do a story justice. There are many times when a story or article needs the assistance of an info-graphic to help the reader better understand the story in front of them.
The Pudding uses a variety of info-graphics to explain the anatomy of a stand-up comedy show. Using Ali Wong’s Netflix special The Pudding goes in depth in The Structure of Stand-up Comedyusing a variety of graphics to help readers understand.
What kinds of Info-Graphics are used?
Each graphic is led by chatter to explain what the graphic is showing the reader. The first graphic used is a form of dot chart, where the size of the circles correlates with the volume and length of audience laughter during Ali’s special. There is then a visual diagram showing the dissecting the time at which the audience laughed the biggest and loudest, labeled “the big laugh”. Then the visual diagram is dissected further to show different topics that occur in the special.
The next graphic shown is another diagram, showing the parts of a play script, to then tie back to how comedians structure their shows. How stories in general are structured is displayed on a timeline, comparing most comedy shows vs. full-length feature films.
This visual essay would appeal to audiences that enjoy watching stand-up comedy. When Ali Wong’s special came out on Netflix it received extremely high praise, so many people watched it. This visual essay was able to explain to people why it received that high praise, and why it felt different than other stand-up comedians.
These info-graphics do an amazing job of getting their point across. Without the visual aspects, this concept would be very hard to explain to someone. It needs to be visually laid out in a way that someone can see the whole special in front of him or her without having to watch the whole thing.
This visual essay follows a very natural storyline. Starting with the exposition of the special, and Ali. Then comes the introduction of the climax that the essay goes on to explain. The rising action is built up in the explanation of the story structure and storylines in general. The climax is reached when the audience learns why “the big laugh” was so big.
This story could not have been told well through text alone. This story truly needed the visual aspects of diagrams and charts to help explain the material. Explaining the timeline of a movie or show is difficult to do outside of actually watching it, The Pudding did a great job of taking this comedy special to explain all comedy specials and storylines in general. I would not have done anything differently to explain this story. The Pudding truly has mastered its craft.