Most good comics know the cosmic power of the punch line. That's the line you deliver that switches everything up or drops the audience off at the ol 'I didn't see that coming' station. It's so easy to gauge the strength of such a resolve! BAM! There is is! The audience is doubled over in laughter and applause!! The place is rockin'! Yeah baby!! The verbal torpedo is on target....the PUNCH LINE is delivered! Mission accomplished! It's what we live for correct??!
But let's back up just a bit before the punch line was crowned king. A word to the wise, the truly great comics know and honor the power of the 'Set-up' just as much as a hilarious punch payoff. And I'm not kidding! Without that great misleading set-up the punch line is... well, not so cosmic and certainly not a torpedo of any kind. Consider that the set-up is what everything is built on, the tension and passion must be there, the character, you're winding a spring as tight as you can get it. The set-ups are where the audience enters the shoes of the comic....or so they think!
To some degree anybody can spout out a punch line. I think it takes a true comic to deliver a great set-up!
;) See what I did there???!