Stand-Up Comics

Greetings, friends. For today’s list, I thought I would discuss some of my all-time favorite stand-up comics. These individuals have influenced me greatly in both my writing and my improvisational comedy. Of course, this is based on my opinions, but I hope you all somewhat agree or use my thoughts to discover new comedic bliss. As with just about anything, these opinions change with the passing of time, but the influence that these individuals have had will never be forgotten. Lastly, I can’t exactly say that these are in any particular order, so pay little attention to the numbers. Here goes…

1. Louis C.K. – I did not discover Louie until about a year and a half ago when I first watched his television show. I was immediately captivated by the fantastic writing and story lines, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that the scenes involving his stand-up comedy (unlike those in Seinfeld) were utterly hilarious. I began to check out his stand-up specials and found that his style of family and adult comedy was unlike anything I had ever seen. You do not need to be a father, husband, or middle aged man in order to understand his humor. You simply need to be human. He is a breath of fresh air, and I am happy that he has received so much praise. It is nice to be a fan of someone who seems to be a genuine and kind person in all of his awkwardness.

2. Eddie Murphy – I will never forget the first time I watched “Raw” on DVD. I was hooked. He did not fall into the trap of one-dimensional comedy. You did not need to grow up in a black neighborhood in order to understand his humor. His jokes were powerful, and his laugh was infectious. His impersonations of Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby were stellar, and his memories of his drunken father caused me to convulse with laughter. I can’t help but wish he would make a comeback (and not with another shitty movie).

3. Bill Burr – I love his style. His personality and approach to comedy are dear to my heart, as I feel that I have a similar style. He pushes barriers and jokes about whatever he feels is funny. He does this without the appearance of caring if people are offended, and that is part of what makes him amazing. Humor is not a weapon. It is a tool for escapism and a way of acknowledging that life does not need to be so serious. I love edgy comics, and Bill Burr is a great example.

4. Woody Allen – My friend let me borrow a CD compilation of Woody Allen’s stand-up several years ago, and I was giddy with excitement. His story telling and dry humor (while constantly silly) remains as the pinnacle of perfection in the realm of comedy. His movies are pretty fantastic as well…

5. John Cleese – While not a typical stand-up comic, I saw this legendary Python perform in his one-man show a few years ago. It was typical Monty Python humor combined with the story of his life. Since the Pythons are more or less my comedic heroes, it’s only fair that I add him to this list.

That’s about it. Until next time…

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