Edward Blake / The Comedian: Once you figure out what a joke everything is, being the Comedian is the only thing that makes sense.
Doctor Manhattan: The charred villages, the boys with necklaces made of human ears...these are part of the joke?
Blake: Hey, I never said it was a good joke. I'm just playing along with the gag.
[To Moloch] I mean, what's so funny? What's so goddamned funny?
— The Comedian, Watchmen
I don't need no fucking man servant / trying to follow me around and wipe my ass / Laugh at every single joke I crack/ And half of 'em ain't even funny, like / "Ha! Marshall you're so funny man / You should be a comedian, god damn!" / Unfortunately I am / I just hide behind the tears of a clown.
— Eminem, Beautiful
"With the fearful strain that is on me night and day, if I did not laugh I should die."
"And if Harlequin shall steal your Columbine,
Laugh, Pagliaccio, so the crowd will cheer!
Turn your distress and tears into jest,
Your pain and sobbing into a funny face - Ah!
At your broken love!
Laugh at the grief that poisons your heart!"
— English translation of Canio's Vesti la giubba, from Ruggero Leoncavello's Pagliacci
Warden: This is the part where you deflect questions with humour?
Alistair: I'd use my shield, but I think you'd actually see me hiding behind it.
Hawke: I have a smile on my face. That should be enough for most people.
Aveline: That doesn't work on me.
Bethany: I can't believe [you and Hawke] are joking about this.
Varric: Don't worry, Sunshine. The laughter just...hides the pain.
— Dragon Age II, "Legacy"
Tony: Have you noticed the closer we get to uncomfortable truths, the more jokes per minute you make?
Peter: That's not true.
Peter: So this talking horse walks into a bar -
Tony: I rest my case.
George: "Look, it's Dos Equis the Clown. See him with big red nose and big funny ears..."
Ernie: "But these are my real ears!"
George: "Aw, now it's Dos Equis the sad clown."
"I've taken a good, long look at the world, and I've concluded that if I didn't laugh I'd probably break down crying."
— Silk, The Mallorean
"...look at the blood on the man’s hands. 900 years, countless very selfish choices, and he’s literally blown planets up. His own race, you know, that’s all on his hands. Which is why I think he has to make silly jokes and wear a fez. Because if he didnt, he’d hang himself."
You're quite the funny man - and yet, I think, laughing on purpose at the darkness.
— Mrs Finnegan, Doctor Who
"Although I laugh and I act like a clown, beneath this mask,I am wearing a frown."
— The Beatles, "I'm a Loser"
Aaron Pittman: "And the punchline was the Blackout. When the world went back to being one giant schoolyard, and the Billy Underwood’s are in charge and I am weak and afraid."
"Though your wife ran away with a soldier that day,
And took with her your trifle of money;
Bless your heart, they don't mind —
They're exceedingly kind —
They don't blame you — as long as you're funny!"
— Jack Point, The Yeomen of the Guard
Wolfwood: Well, I'll be. I'm actually surprised that you can smile like that.
Vash: Huh? What do you mean?
Wolfwood: Ya had me kind of worried. I noticed that you always smile and seem really friendly. But the way you smiled was so empty, it hurt to watch you. You're hurting like crazy on the inside, yet you grin and bear it.