With reference to movies, horror and comedy are two well-known genres. A walk around a cinema foyer will be enough to convince most people of this.
Perhaps the most obvious contrast between the two is the range of emotions that each is designed to evoke.
Comedies feature light-hearted plots and subject matter. They are designed to amuse viewers and provoke laugher. They achieve this aim by using humorous language, including jokes and one-liners and exaggerating situations, sometimes with over the top action. There are many different types of comedy, some of which include slapstick, spoofs, parodies and black comedy.
Horror movies are, conversely, designed to frighten their viewers, often resulting in a terrifying finale, while simultaneously continuing to entertain and capture. Like comedy, there are many different forms of horror. Some of these include teen terror, satanic, slasher, and Dracula.
Horror and comedy appear, on face value, as opposite as two genres can be. Someone who likes one does not always like the other. Nevertheless, they are both high-profile, well-known movie genres. Both provide the viewer with a sense of escapism, as neither tends to tackle serious issues like some other genres, for example drama. This factor makes either an horror or a comedy movie ideal with which to unwind at the end of a hard day. Comedy and horror are both genres with which viewers are likely to have their minds taken off their everyday lives and concerns. Both are watched for entertainment value and not, generally, for educational purposes.
Movies of both genres contain plot and tend to follow the basic story structure of beginning, middle and end. Also, both comedies and horrors are works of fiction and therefore are not true to life unlike, for example, documentary-films.
Both genres contain characters that express human emotion and reactions. It is important for a movie to contain at least one believable character, so that the audience has some way of personally relating to the film. This is perhaps even more vital in an horror where the plot and other characters may be more far-fetched.
Interestingly, another thing that the two genres have in common is that each sometimes uses elements from the other. For example, dark comedies often feature horror material, and spoof horrors are comic versions of original, more traditional, horrors.
What’s more, comedy horror, also known as horror comedy, combines traits of comedy and horror. Comedy horror seems to be becoming a stand-alone genre.
In terms of which is more likeable, it is very difficult to compare. The two genres are very different and often appeal to different audiences. Also, it is arguable that the each is ideal for different situations. For example, if a group of high school friends get together for a fun evening, they may find it more exciting to watch an horror movie together. On the other hand, if an individual is home alone and feels that they need cheering up then a comedy would probably be more suitable.