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658143 Posts in 9262 Topics by 3396 Members Latest Member: - vlozan86 Most online today: 64 - most online ever: 494 (Jul 01, 2007, 02:59:53 PM)
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Author Topic: who is your favourite comedian?  (Read 4859 times)
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william
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Posts: 493


« on: Jan 04, 2005, 11:42:06 AM »

okay, so we just had one of these 'fifty greatest' things on tv, and it was about comedians. now, these usually suck cos the people who vote for them are kind of stupid and sentimental (see the 'hundred greatest britons' list, which placed princess diana above shakespeare). this one, however , was the fifty greatest comedians as chosen by comedians, so it was a little more interesting. all the pythons were there somewhere, i think, as well as morecambe and wise and the old 'entertainers', but at the top was peter cook. this was amazingly cool because even though some of his stuff is terrible (by which i mean not groan-worthy, but actually horrific), he was actually an incredible comedian who doesn't really get enough credit. his sketch about squatter and the ant is one of my favourite pieces ever.

anyway, to cut a long story short (albeit after i've already related the long story anyway) it got me wondering which comedians everyone likes. my favourties are probably john cleese, chris morris and peter cook (but not his really nasty stuff. i'd go about as far as the first derek and clive album).
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william
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« Reply #1 on: Jan 04, 2005, 11:45:47 AM »

ps, i think we can include shows here, and on that note i would also like to mention the simpsons, and to a lesser extent family guy.
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jebreject
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« Reply #2 on: Jan 04, 2005, 12:19:42 PM »

i like bill hicks, george carlin, lewis black, mitch hedburg, richard pryor, and sometimes david cross.

i'm not sure which of those would be my favourite.  probably lewis black.
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Steve
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« Reply #3 on: Jan 04, 2005, 12:23:12 PM »

Mike Nelson. Pure pure genius.  A close second though is Marc Maron.
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Lalitree
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« Reply #4 on: Jan 04, 2005, 12:27:18 PM »

Emo Phillips.
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Scott CE
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« Reply #5 on: Jan 04, 2005, 12:35:59 PM »

I think Louis CK is the funniest comic currently working, I can't even think of someone who approaches him.  

Alltime, I would have to say Pryor and  Cosby are the two without equal.
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terror firma
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Posts: 215


« Reply #6 on: Jan 04, 2005, 12:36:50 PM »

for stand-up:

andy kindler
patton oswalt
louis ck
bob odenkirk
todd barry
jim gaffigan
chris hardwick
sarah silverman
nick swardson
paul f tompkins
mitch hedberg
todd glass
neil hamburger
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william
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« Reply #7 on: Jan 04, 2005, 12:56:22 PM »

elaborations people!

chris morris is one of my favourite comedians, he's kind of a shadowy figure here because he doesn't do any live appearances or standup or interviews, or really appear anywhere at all except for in his own programmes. the programmes are great; there's a tendency toward dark humour, and at least two of his series have been based around satire of the media (spoof news programme 'the day today' and the stupendously brilliant 'brass eye'). he delights in bamboozling celebrities in fake interviews

favourite moments: most of brass eye, particularly the programme on animals ('mankinds obsession with animals goes back to the egyptians, who worshipped cats because they thought they were funny', and the campaign in which he managed to get numerous celebrities to speak out to save a fictional elephant which had got its trunk stuck up its own arse) and the drugs program (he invented a fictional drug called cake, and got people like noel edmunds and phil collins to make short films about the dangers of it - the effects of the drug included time slowing down, so that it took a whole month for a minute to pass)

anyway, come on. more favourite jokes/routines/whatever below
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Steve
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« Reply #8 on: Jan 04, 2005, 01:16:51 PM »

Mike Nelson is my favorite comedian for the obvious reason of MST3K.  His books that he has written post Mystery Science Theater 3000, although being of the observational type (hey i suppose it's what he did best with the riffs on the show right?) are absolutely hilarious.  I suppose it's just his manner of speaking.  I read "mind over matters" constantly and always find myself laughing at it, out loud, in public.  As for MST3K?  Man, funniest show ever.  EVAR.


As for Marc Maron, his book the Jerusalem Syndrome ranks up there as one of my favorites.  Some of the stories in that are just so outlandish that you have to laugh to keep from being real creeped out.  His stand up I think is just as good.  Conan once said something about his ability to engage and then completely alienate an audience in short order.  I like that sort of unabashed honesty.  Though sometimes he can be a little "hey i'm a jew we do this you do that" in his stories but that's okay.  His funnier stuff totally makes up for that.  Not to mention the stuff for Morning Sedition he does on Air America.  Woo.
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giraffe
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« Reply #9 on: Jan 04, 2005, 01:31:21 PM »

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jebreject
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« Reply #10 on: Jan 04, 2005, 01:37:08 PM »

oh, also, larry david.
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trailofmusic
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Posts: 781


« Reply #11 on: Jan 04, 2005, 03:06:19 PM »

I'm not no writing-person, so brace yourself

my favourite standups

Neil Hamburger - Clearly somebody was fed up with bad comics, so they made Neil, the ultimate bad comic.  His CDs can be downloaded (best:  Raw Hamburger and America's Funnyman) but you won't really get a good idea until you see the DVD (which is cheap off of Amazon).  The character of Neil wasn't perfected until sometime before that DVD.  A big part of the joke is that the people that don't "get it" become frustrated, so when I saw him live, I thought maybe I should hold my laughter in, but as soon as he walked on stage I broke.  That was the most I've ever laughed in my entire life, and because of that, he is my undisputed #1 standup.

Todd Barry - I love "dry" comedy, Todd is as good as it gets.  His new CD just came out and it's at least as good as the first.  I don't really have much to say about him, except that with only his 2 CDs, I feel he's one of the funniest people I've ever heard, and that's special.  I wish I could type out one of his jokes here, but (like with Neil) without knowing his delivery...

Others of note - Bill Hicks, Louis CK, Mike Birbiglia, Emo Phillips, David Cross, Norm Macdonald, Fred Armisen, Jim Gaffigan, Patton Oswalt

TV

The Simpsons - My favourite TV show of all time(the first 7 or 8 seasons anyway).  Everyone knows the Simpsons (except kids who are growing up with the bad episodes)

Seinfeld - Obviously.

Upright Citizens Brigade - Sketch comedy written by improv with a thread running them all together in a story eventually bringing us back to where we began.  Geniuses.  They met in Chicago as improv actors and trained under Del Close (one of the "titans of improv") and studied the technique he named The Harold (a longform improvisation made of different scenes all connected and coming back to where it began, sound familiar?).  The show was cancelled after 3 seasons (the first is on DVD now), but the most important thing is the Theater they've opened in NYC which will eventually become what Second City was to Chicago decades ago.

The Office - Stunning!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I'm sure if you don't already know about it, you'll get a better synopsis later in the thread.

Da Ali G Show - Sacha Baron Cohen is a master, surely you know him by now.

Strangers with Candy - Another 3 season show (all on DVD) with rapid fire absurdist jokes.  The idea is that of an After School Special about a disgusting 40something woman who goes back to High School after spending decades as a "boozer, user, and a loser."  She always ends up learning the wrong lesson, confusing it with the right one.

Mr. Show - Mr. Show.

Late Night with Conan O'Brien - Absurdist, self-loathing, ex-Simpsons and SNL writer hosting a talkshow that beat literally ALL odds and is now lined up to take over The Tonight Show in 4 years?  Yes, Conan is amazing.  His style of hosting brings a certain behind-the-scenes angle that you don't get from the others.  Late Night is sort of a hub for many great comedians who have
performed regularly (UCB) or written (Bob Odenkirk [Mr. Show], Dino Stamatopoulos [Mr. Show], Louis CK, Demetri Martin, Jon Glaser, Brian Stack, etc, these are people who went on to shape the current comedy scenes in NYC and LA).  Former co-host Andy Richter went on to have his own show that could have easily made this list if it lasted longer than 2 semi-seasons.  

Other

The Best Show on WFMU with Tom Scharpling - Influenced by UCB (and pals with them!), Scharpling hosts a radio show where he wants the listener to be caught off guard and unsure about the reality of what they're hearing.  I could go on about all of the contributers and bits, but that would take away some of the magic.  Laying low and building a cult following (the Friends Of Tom) The Best Show is sort of like the equivalent of the punk and garage rock Scharpling always plays.

Stella - Stella is a group of 3 men who make short films/sketches and standup acts that can go VERY far into obscene territory, but there's usually an absurdity that keeps me in.  They are working to get a series on Comedy Central, which somebody told me was "tamed only just enough to get on cable"
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jebreject
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« Reply #12 on: Jan 04, 2005, 03:18:36 PM »

The two best, smartest, and funniest shows on TV right now are, in my opinion, Arrested Development and Curb Your Enthusiasm.  And that's all I have to say about that.
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trailofmusic
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« Reply #13 on: Jan 04, 2005, 03:32:12 PM »

Oh God, I knew I'd forget something.  Arrested Development is flat-out great.  Too bad I heard it probably won't get another season (poor ratings, even now that it comes after the Simpsons)
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william
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Posts: 493


« Reply #14 on: Jan 04, 2005, 05:16:31 PM »

From Derek and Clive (Live), by Peter Cook and Dudley moore. Imagine two very posh English accents

CLIVE:
Have I told you about Squatter and the ant?
DEREK:
No, no, no.
CLIVE:
Well, Squatter, Squatter was in a terrible position.
DEREK:
Oh.
CLIVE:
He was in Bahrain, which is a pretty bloody place to be.
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
And there was this ant .....
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
..... which had only one leg .....
DEREK:
God.
CLIVE:
..... and only one eye .....
DEREK:
God.
CLIVE:
..... and it was about two miles away from Squatter.
DEREK:
God.
CLIVE:
So, a pretty bloody menacing position for Squatter, .....
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
..... who was equipped only with, erm, you know, a hydrogen bomb, .....
DEREK:
God.
CLIVE:
..... erm, six grenades, .....
DEREK:
God.
CLIVE:
..... and, erm, a few rifles.
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
And this bloody ant, .....
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
..... one eye, .....
DEREK:
Ye-h.
CLIVE:
..... one leg, .....
DEREK:
Ye-h.
CLIVE:
..... was advancing towards Squatter .....
DEREK:
Ye-h.
CLIVE:
..... at about-, oh, I'd say at about, er, a mile every century, you know.
DEREK:
God.
CLIVE:
Really speeding up.
DEREK:
Ye-h.
CLIVE:
I think the animal was on drugs.
DEREK:
Yes, or heat.
CLIVE:
Or heat, yes, .....
DEREK:
Ye-h.
CLIVE:
..... as you may say.
DEREK:
Mmm.
CLIVE:
And Squatter .....
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
..... with his extraordinary calm .....
DEREK:
Hmm.
CLIVE:
..... took it very smoothly.
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
And do you know what he did?
DEREK:
No.
CLIVE:
Nothing.
DEREK:
Good God.
CLIVE:
He immediately did nothing.
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
And this stupified the ant.
DEREK:
Yes.
CLIVE:
Stopped in it's tracks.
DEREK:
Mmm.
CLIVE:
Didn't move an inch for about, um, three and a half years, yes.
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Andrew_TSKS
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« Reply #15 on: Jan 05, 2005, 12:29:11 AM »

ok, let me just say here that stella is the worst thing i've ever, ever seen. ever. sorry.
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trailofmusic
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« Reply #16 on: Jan 05, 2005, 12:55:00 AM »

Okey dokey
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Nickosaurus
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« Reply #17 on: Jan 05, 2005, 02:05:07 AM »

Probably Zach Galifianakis, since I came damn near to wetting myself when I saw him at giggles.
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Charming Tedious
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Posts: 731


« Reply #18 on: Jan 05, 2005, 02:46:37 AM »

Eugene Mirman takes the format of standup comedy and turns it against itself.   Really great absurdist stuff.  Have a listen:  http://www.eugenemirman.com/Eugene_At_Caroline's.mp3

Also:
Calvin Johnson has been playing solo acoustic shows the last few years where he spends about half of the show just talking and being very very very funny.  Maybe less funny since the horrible van wreck which caused head injuries that left his wit intact but his speech much slower.  poor guy.  still a brilliant and often hilarious performer.
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davy
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« Reply #19 on: Jan 05, 2005, 09:43:47 AM »

mitch hedburg and david cross are the usual suspects, but the funniest stand-up moment i've ever witnessed was a live improv show in new york where horatio sanz was performing with the upright citizens brigade. he was doing some sketch about vampires. i laughed for days.

recently, i saw this guy on conan o'brien who sat on a stool with a guitar and told slow, awesome jokes. i don't usually watch stand-up on late night talk shows, but i watched this, and i wish, wish, wish i could watch it again. he was great. i just looked him up: demetri martin. he has some clips at his site (www.demetrimartin.com) and npr has a good audio file on him. he's gotta be one of my current faves.
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Johnp
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Posts: 380


« Reply #20 on: Jan 05, 2005, 11:25:54 AM »

David O'Doherty:

"I procrastinated for so long, I finished the internet."

"You know the way flamingoes are pink because they eat so much shrimp and the pigment dyes their feathers? Does that mean women who work at make-up counters drink too much Lucozade?"

Jp.

Who the hell is Sam Deese?????
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j-tron
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Posts: 156


« Reply #21 on: Jan 05, 2005, 03:09:46 PM »

I'm a big fan of Stephen Wright.

"You never know what you have until it's gone. I wanted to know what I had, so I got rid of everything."

Check out http://www.stevenwright.com/clips/index.html
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Ah_Pook
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« Reply #22 on: Jan 05, 2005, 03:58:48 PM »

for recorded comedy i'll take Firesign Theater over most things in the world
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Charming Tedious
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Posts: 731


« Reply #23 on: Jan 05, 2005, 07:24:40 PM »

not enough ladies on this thread.

ellen degeneres is kind of conventional but her delivery is sooo good.

i just listened to an old lily tomlin record and laughed a lot.
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John
edit0r
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« Reply #24 on: Jan 05, 2005, 11:26:22 PM »

Margaret Cho is my favorite comic working
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