"Are you a doctor?"
"Mantis Toboggan, M.D."
It wasn't the actual points he was trying to make that were funny but the sheer ridiculousness of certain situations he created. A couple of examples, without giving anything away, was the protagonist escaping the authorities by threatening to put his knee through a piece of art. Another was after being a murder suspect, instead of easily clearing his name, he blindly follows this women he just met all over Europe merely on a whim while being chased by the police.
Not to mention the standard cliche of the "bad guy" being an albino named Silas.
2) I 100% agree with you on the revisionist part. Id disagree with the "towards the middle" but thats an entirely different debate and i dont want to sidetrack the current topic any further then i have. But i agree with your fundimental point.