After wowing audiences in "Bridesmaids" and all but taking over television comedy in 2011, women have decided that they will no longer be funny.
The shocking announcement has blindsided comedy fans, Hollywood execs and advertisers alike, all of whom recently embraced the notion that ladies could be funny (and profitable). The revelation has also sent shockwaves through the scientific community, who back in October of 2011 discovered not only that women were funny, but also that they were only slightly less funny than men.
"We had a good run, but it's time to move on," said women in a statement released this morning.
Sources close to women say that the decision was based on several factors, not the least of which is "just being over it."
"It's too much pressure," says one former female television writer. "We're under the microscope now because someone found out that we're funny and now everything we say and do has to be funny or else it means that women aren't funny. If 'Whitney' sucks, that's somehow on me. Screw that."
Some women feel that their popularity since 2011 has had negative effects. One female comedian who recently decided to go back to school for a degree in library sciences explains, "I liked it better when people thought we weren't funny. Then it was, like, a surprise. It used to be that every time I did a set, someone would come up to me after and say, 'Hey, I don't like female comedians but I thought you were really great.' Now, when I kill at a comedy show, people are just like, 'Great job.' What does that even mean?"
But for many women, it's simply a question of getting their lives back. Now that they're being called upon to executive produce, write, direct, and star in every single movie and television show, they're finding they have less time for the things that really matter. "I can't write a book without Judd Apatow calling me on the phone wanting to option it," laments one former humorous memoirist. "I have a pet bird. How can I give him the attention he deserves when I'm always working? I can't, that's how."
The ramifications of the decision will be felt far and wide. Calls to "Saturday Night Live" were not immediately returned, but given the recent announcement that another woman had been hired for the cast, it can be assumed that the long-running sketch show will just be cancelled. And while "Bridesmaids 2" will continue being developed, it will be re-written as a Jane Austin-esque romantic drama, with any comedic moments being handled by Jon Hamm.
But, at least as far as one TV executive is concerned, not even Jon Hamm can replace all funny women. "Everything I was working on, my entire schedule, was women. Now what am I supposed to do? Vulnerability in comedy is so hot right now... I don't think Hamm's ever felt a little bit cold, much less vulnerable. And sure, there's Paul Rudd, but people know he's not a woman. Even if they don't know it know it, they know it."
While it remains to be seen what women will do next, they hope their decision will bring some closure to an exhausting debate. "Frankly, we're just tired of talking about it. We couldn't just be funny, we always had to have a discussion about being funny. Are women funny, are women as funny as men, why don't some people find women funny? When does that conversation end so we can just be funny? Spoiler alert: it doesn't. So we're opting out, and now you have your answer. Are women funny? No. Because you don't deserve it."
For more on this story, read the personal accounts of these former funny women, exclusively obtained by The Huffington Post:
Meghan O'Keefe: How Can You Expect Me To Be Funny When The World's Going To End?
We Hope You Had The Time Of Your Life: