Hmmm, Czech humor?
Kafka and his cohorts apparently laughed themselves sick when he read out early drafts of “The Trial” in Prague coffeehouses.
More than a few writers bemoan the fact that everyone (well, almost everyone) takes Kafka so seriously. Not hard with all that existential despair and constant, looming sense of dread.
Ask a Czech and they’ll tell you they read Kafka for a laugh. Czech humor lies in a sense of ironic absurdity, a coping mechanism for being historically invaded by outsiders and told what to do by everyone else.
It’s not light-hearted and frothy. It’s not farce. It’s not comic.
It’s dark and wry and a little twisted. So how could you do “The Trial” as a comedy? Set in a circus? Pick on the new clown? Cast it with midgets?
How about glove puppets? Funny people? Funny accents? Funny subtitles?
How can you draw out the humor?