What makes something funny? How come some jokes make us laugh out loud and others leave us with no response at all? I've found two key elements to humor:
1) Surprise - We aren't expecting the punch line.
2) Truth - We recognize ourselves, our thoughts, our perceptions. The funniest comedy is the most truthful.
So then, why is so much comedy based on stereotypes? Look at all the comedians who are Asian, Jewish, African American, Gay. They regularly use stereotypes associated with their ethnicity, sexuality, etc. in their material. So if humor has to be true to be funny - does that make stereotypes true?
(yes, I'm going to pick a fight with myself here. You probably know by now I think stereotypes of women are the number one cause for bad advertising) Let's see whether I win or whether I win. (oh shut up. No YOU shut up)