This is a humorous list article. It will be roughly 5-7 entries long, each one detailing another piece of factual evidence supporting the claim made in the title. While the list may be factual in nature, it will also be somewhat light-hearted, if not flat-out hilarious, as factoids, historical footnotes, and bits of interesting trivia are presented in a manner that is not only educational, but also, as genuinely funny as possible.
In this opening section a reader will be introduced to the topic, perhaps being told that their preconceptions on the topic are either somewhat incomplete or entirely incorrect – a void of non-circumstantial evidence that this article intends to fill. In other words, that something is pure bullshit, as a great deal of comedy stems from discussing subjects that are irksome and are ideas or experiences shared by many.
The first entry usually sets the tone for everything to come, setting up the structure and format of each entry.
In this paragraph, the writer will present the reader with a bit of background information on the topic at hand, and will explain what it has to do with the topic at large. After the writer feels the information supplied is sufficient, the writer will then transition in to the humorous explanation as to why everything you previously thought about this subject is, bullshit.
This is followed by a funny picture that acts as punctuation to the overall joke of the previous paragraph, or a funny picture that visually brings to life a concept or mental image brought up in the previous paragraph, for instance…
By this point in the entry, most of the entertainment value will give way to historical or scientific expository explanation that is rather dry and dull. There will probably be a dick joke tossed in here to liven up the learning experience and make it feel less like a lecture and more like a profanity-laced intellectual conversation with a friend.
The entry ends on a final note that reinforces the overall theme, while at the same time working in a joke that comments on the entire entry – possibly having something to do with how the subject of the entry is full of shit and should not be trusted, or is super cool and should be followed to the ends of the earth and back. Also, a dick joke.
Hyper links are provided to source the information being discussed to prove that the writer isn’t providing you with the same kind of bullshit they claim to be debunking. It usually helps if the links are from a well-trusted source, and not some random person’s blog, unless the subject of the article deals with the hysterical bullshit one can find on a random person’s blog. If the latter is the case, the more bullshit the better. In fact, if the overall theme of the article is absurd bullshit of any kind there almost isn’t even a need to add the following:
1) Researchable facts that disprove claims – if the bullshit is so extremely dense, then a majority of readers will understand and recognize the bullshit without being told
2) Jokes – sometimes the bullshit people actually believe is much funnier than the jokes a writer can provide as commentary for the bullshit.
Entry #3 – 4,5, or 6
The following 2 to 3 entries follow the same pattern explained above: factual evidence supported by the findings of trusted sources, all of which are wrapped in a dick joke candy coating with the occasional curse word thrown in for good measure to remind readers of the “every man” tone most humorous list articles aim for.
If this list is numbered in descending order, each entry should be more grandiose in its proving of the overall theme, each being a better example than the last.
Also, it is around this section of the article that a pop cultural reference can be found. The pop cultural reference acts as a point of familiarity, as mentioning something currently happening or something that has happened fairly recently (movies and TV shows from the past 20 years, for example) give the reader a deeper understanding of the subject, framing the possibly difficult concepts of the subject in a way that is easily recognizable. For example, the bullshit found in the subject of the article can be related to the bullshit one experienced when watching the final episode of LOST.
Do you remember that bullshit? Well, this bullshit is exactly like that bullshit. The only difference here is time: this bullshit happened a few centuries ago, whereas that bullshit happened within our supposedly modern, technologically and intellectually advanced time.
Isn’t it crazy that the same bullshit keeps happening yet we never learn that that bullshit is bullshit?
This theme carries throughout, until…
The Final Entry
The final entry is the brightest star in the bullshit nebula. Nearly every sentence of this article should be filled with factual information relating to the overall theme that is so absurd or unbelievable that jokes are almost unnecessary.
This entry should have a “I don’t believe people actually believe this” quality that the writer plays off of by proving that it is A) real, B) bullshit, and C) ripe for making fun of stupid people.
A majority of this entry will be dedicated to letter C.
On the other hand, if the article’s purpose is to highlight how great or “awesome” something is, this final entry will employ the usage of hyperbolic adjectives to punctuate just how insanely, awesomely badass the subject is.
Though, very few humorous list articles are about praising a subject, as mining humor from bullshit is much easier (and, frankly, more fun) than mining humor from something that is generally well liked.
Bullshit is funny, which is why most humorous list articles are full of it. Whether or not the article is itself bullshit is up to the individual reader. If it is, perhaps this bullshit-filled humorous list article that attempted to debunk bullshit will itself be one day placed on a list of humorous list articles that are filled with bullshit.