Slapstick comedy has been entertaining audiences for centuries. Within slapstick, comic pain and comic violence are performed to provoke laughter. This book explores just how and why the performance of pain and violence can make us laugh. It examines thecentrality of the double act, the importance of morality and the techniques used by slapstick performers. In this engaging new book, Louise Peacock provides a detailed consideration of the ways in which slapstick is structured and performed, exploring a range of examples drawn from theatre, film and television including Commedia dell'Arte, Punch and Judy, Circus Clowns, television sitcoms like Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em and a wide range of films from Charlie Chaplin's Modern Times to The Hangover.