Why Is Shrek Funny?: DreamWorks and the Intertextual Gag

  • Sam SummersEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Animation book series (PAANI)


This chapter looks at comedy in DreamWorks’ films and in particular the pop-culture references which characterise their approach to humour. Through comprehensive discussion of these gags, delineating the different forms that they can take, it employs and reformulates existing theories of comedy to explain the humour behind them. The chapter applies a variety of approaches to three very different intertextual gags from Shrek 2. It engages with the notion that comedy derives from incongruity and therefore from the contrast between these intertexts and the contexts in which they are used, combining this theory with the little-explored idea of the ‘comedy of recognition’, to explain the basic comic appeal of specific familiar intertexts.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of SunderlandSunderlandUK

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