In a romantic comedy, the search for romance is the central theme of a lighthearted or funny story line. Romantic comedy is generally considered a sub-genre of the larger category of romance in books or films.
The combination of romance and humor is essential to a romantic comedy plot. Two protagonists and potential love interests are often placed in a position of opposition to each other or with difficulties to overcome. In a romantic comedy, the resolution to the conflict of the plot comes through humor.
In film, romantic comedies are often considered of lesser quality by movie critics but they have been popular since the early days of American cinema.