What is Absurd Humor – Your Guide to Surreal Comedy

Among the various types of humor that we have covered on our blog so far, one particularly stands out. Due to its unusual nature, this type of comedy received a unique name – surreal or absurd humor.

In today’s article, we will cover everything you need to know to:

  • understand what is absurd comedy;
  • how to appreciate this type of humor;
  • and how to start getting good at it if it is your cup of tea.

Also, we will give you quite a few examples of surreal jokes so that you can see absurd humor in action.

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

What is absurd humor and surreal comedy?

What is Absurd Humor?

Absurd humor (or surreal comedy) is the type of humor that revolves around illogical situations, behaviors, and absurd characters that make you laugh simply because they are ridiculous and unexpected.

The main focus of absurd humor is to create weird extremes in rather common situations. What makes it funny is the element of surprise and unpredictability.

The more unlikely and weird the situation is, the funnier it gets.

Just like other forms of humor, surreal or absurd comedy is likely to:

  • exaggerate things,
  • mislead the audience,
  • be sudden and take you by surprise,
  • go in unexpected directions, etc.

What makes absurd humor different is its absurdity, which means that there is always an illogical factor in surreal jokes. It’s what we like to call an element of nonsense.

You can spot surreal humor in stand-up comedy shows, movies, dramas, and works of literature.

Before we move forward, let’s take a look at a quick example of an absurd joke here:

What is the difference between a lawyer and a table?


The unexpected and entirely ridiculous punchline catches you off guard and can sometimes be incredibly funny.

Truthfully, quite a few of these can be considered stupid or even anti-jokes. That doesn’t mean they are not hilarious, and if you find that you enjoy this type of humor, have fun reading the collections of our favorite anti-jokes:

How to Figure Out an Absurdist Joke?

How to understand an absurdist joke?

Now that we have a clear understanding of what is surreal comedy, let’s move on to the next step: noticing the absurd joke when it takes place.

How do you know someone is cracking a surreal joke?

Usually, they will try to intentionally violate common logic and get you to laugh by:

  • blurting out silly comments in mundane situations,
  • saying completely unrelated thoughts in regular conversations,
  • answering questions nonsensically,
  • taking advantage of unlikely scenarios.

You might have noticed a pattern here – absurd humor thrives in common, everyday situations where nobody expects a joke. The more unpredictable it is, the larger potential it has to be funny.

You can rarely see an absurd joke coming (although it is hard to predict a joke in general), but we hope you can now appreciate it when it does happen.

Examples of Absurd Jokes to Crack You Up

My clever friend said that onions are the only food that can make you cry. So I threw a coconut in his face.


Yesterday my boss told me:

Don’t dress for the job you have. Dress for the job you want.

Today when I turned up at the office dressed like a Ghostbuster he told me I was fired.


I went to a psychic the other day and asked her if I was going to go to jail in the future.

She said no, so I robbed her.


I have just discovered I have superpowers: I can actually melt ice cubes by staring at them.

It takes me quite a long time, though.


A recent scientific study showed that out of 2,293,618,367 people, 94% are too lazy to read that number.


I’ve lost my home, I’ve lost control, and I can’t see any escape.

It’s time to get a new keyboard.

How to Start Implementing Absurd Humor

First of all, it is important to note that surreal comedy is unique, and many people don’t enjoy it even in the slightest. Like with anything else in life, different people have a different appreciation for various types of humor.

You should never force yourself to become better at a comedy form that you do not truly enjoy. Keep exploring all the things that can make you laugh and spend more time doing those that do the best job.

For those of you who do wish to become experts at absurd humor, we have created a quick guide on how to start getting better at it today.

Let’s start with the first step:

How to get better at absurd humor?

Step 1: Begin with a Relatable Scenario

The first and foremost step is to choose a context that most people listening to you can relate to easily. A joke that only a few people can relate to will only make those few laugh and leave the rest wondering what on Earth are you talking about.

How can you do this?

It depends on your approach and the kind of joke you are trying to tell:

  • If you are cracking a ridiculous comment in an unexpected situation, look for the perfect timing. Try to find a moment where everyone will expect it the least. In this case, the relatable scenario is the mundane situation you are all experiencing.
  • If you are telling a longer surreal joke through a story, put it in a relatable setting that most of your listeners are familiar with. The more common and pattern-like the situation is, the higher the chances that nobody will see your joke coming.

Therefore, to get started, you need to set a proper base for your bizarre yet funny joke.

Step 2: Build a Bridge

The second step to crack a surreal joke is to find an element that helps you build a bridge between the rational world to an irrational or absurd one.

You can choose any element from the given scenario, as long as you can make it work. It can be a word, a number, a person, an idea, etc.

Anything that will help you catch people off-guard and surprise them with the absurdity of what you are saying is a great pick.

Step 3: Get into the Depths of Absurdity

The third and final step is to take the element that you selected in step 2 and exaggerate it as much as you can. Exaggeration is an important technique in all humor types, and surreal comedy is no exception.

However, there is one particularly great circumstance here. There are no limits when it comes to absurd humor, so you can let your imaginations go wild in any direction!

The less sense it has, the better.

As you start getting more experienced, all of these steps will come more naturally to you, and you won’t even have to think about it.

Your Turn

Now, we would like to hear from you.

Do you enjoy absurd humor, and what is your favorite joke?

Let us know by leaving a comment down below right away!

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2 Comments. Leave new

  • One time my friend told me that absurd humor is weird
    But later I replied him one absurd joke and he thought it was funny
    So then he died of laughter, period.

  • Turns out I’ve written an entire memoir and only realize now, after sharing it with my sister, it’s absurd humor. I thought it was about nothing…I guess not knowing your life was absurd is absurd.


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