Leonid Gaidai’s comedies of the 1960s owed their phenomenal success to Gaidai’s visual style of humor, which starkly contrasted to verbal instantiations of official Soviet ideology within narrative-driven Soviet cinema. An attentive comparison between Gaidai’s comedies and the satirical films of El'dar Riazanov accounts for the outstanding popularity of the former and the more modest success of the latter. What makes Gaidai unique is his interest in visual, especially physical, humor. Gaidai privileged key elements of physical comedy, such as the primacy of visual over verbal humor, an exhibitionistic enlargement of the human body as a comic attraction, the transition from a still image to a moving picture as a visual attraction, and, most important, a chain of loosely connected sight gags (which became his signature structure) over a coherent and cohesive narrative. By contrast, Riazanov’s satires tended to mock social vices and therefore relied heavily on a goal-oriented ideological narrative.