This blog, brought to you by UPP Studios, discusses how opposites attract, and how partnerships consisting of juxtaposing personalities or types flourish. There is a very special kind of energy created when truly contrasting types collide. The expression "opposites attract" is usually used to describe relationships, but it can actually be applied to business partnerships as well. Time and time again, comedy duos with extremely different body types, work together largely in part due to the wonderful aesthetic this creates.
Laurel and Hardy as well as Abbott and Costello did just this, with one member of the duo being tall and thin and the other short and fat. In addition to the aesthetic, duos like this have sharply differing personalities, which makes for very interesting interactions. More modern duos adopted these concepts as well. Chris Farley and David Spade made several films together. Not only were their bodies very different from one another, but their characters were also polar opposites in terms of intelligence, ambition, interests, etc. Kevin Hart and Duane Johnson recently teamed up for the film "Central Intelligence." Johnson towers over Hart throughout the film, making their partnership comedic gold.
Big archetypal characters playing off of each other have been used in many television shows and movies throughout the history of cinema. It feels to me very reminiscent of Commedia dell’arte, a style of theater in which the performers wore masks that were representative of stock characters and fixed social types. They would often pit opposing character types against each other for the inherent comedic value this provided. Writers have embraced the contrasting dynamic between their characters for some time. Neil Simon’s play “The Odd Couple” was centered around two characters who’s differences drove each other crazy. The result of their collective madness is a romp that is delightful to watch.
Discovery is the most interesting part of art. As things begin to unfold, one becomes more and more intrigued. Using majorly juxtaposing character types inevitably leads to at least one of those characters being forced out of their element. In an effort to adapt, navigating in a world in which they are unfamiliar, they are realistically only capable of one thing, which is discovery. This discovery is fruitful for the character and therefore fruitful for the audience, and makes for captivating material.
UPP StudiosUPP Studios founders David M. Goldman and Adam C. Lively are a perfect example of how opposites attract. Beyond the fact that David is stocky and heavyset while Adam is more lean and muscular, the two come from very different walks of life. Adam, is a country boy from Idaho, that is well versed in fishing, fighting, hunting, and carpentry. David, is a city boy from New York, that is well versed in sarcasm, cynicism, cinema, and sketch comedy. In joining together the two became a force to be reckoned with. They complement each other beautifully, leaning on each others strengths to achieve their goals.
It is not always easy to wrap one’s head around the idea that someone so different from one’s-self might complement and help one to grow and thrive. Only with first hand experience does one come to truly make this realization. There are times in which Adam or David will present an idea that the other can’t envision, no matter how hard he tries. Accepting that their synergy resulted in an extraordinary partnership, they learned to trust each other. They learned that in times of doubt, in times when one of them might be unsure of the direction the two are supposed to be headed, there is no need to feel any sense of panic. Instead, all they must do is rely on the trust that they have built through their partnership. With this trust as a strong foundation, they know that if they simply encourage and help facilitate the clear direction of the other, the possibilities are endless and success is inevitable.
Thank you for your interest in UPP Studios. There is a new blog every Friday and an original, new media sketch comedy video every Monday, right here at uppstudios.com, so stay tuned!