If you look at the silliness inherent in early D&D with its anagram names, stuff like Gutboy Barrelhouse, the humor in the AD&D DMG you can tell that D&D was not meant to always be played straight .
I'd be even money that in jokes and the ancestors of the Monty Python References (whatever was hilarious in 1974) probably flew across the table back in Lake Geneva just as they do ours.
In my experience my second best ever D&D campaign was one I have mentioned before (Midrea Unglued) a very extended one shot in 2e where the leads were Hans and Franz from S&L and the rest of the cast included a talking squirrel named Rambo, A Swedish Minder named Inga (who had a Shojo frying pan BTW A Satyr Bard and a Mute Coroner/Psion named Hayabusa. We played the rules mostly straight but laughed our butts off.
Why it was so much better than most is really simple, everyone got involved and everyone had fun.
Those two things are the real keys two a great game.
Let me repeat
Everyone gets involved and everyone has fun
If that works for you like it did for me than let me suggest that you lighten up and let the laughs fall where they may. Laughter after all may be the best medicine for your sick game.
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