Comedian Rankings

11 Jul

It’s impossible to make a ‘Definitive List’ of comedian rankings. There’s always going to be comedians that you like and ones that you don’t, based on your own background/experience/feelings. Certain people will just ‘speak’ to you. But since I always make this list in my head when I hear a new comic (as every one time yeshiva guy does), here’s goes:

Hilarious: Dave Attell, Brian Regan, Greg Giraldo, Dave Chappelle

Classic: Chris Rock, Louis C.K., Kathleen Madigan, Jackie Mason, George Carlin, Ellen DeGeneres, Ray Romano, Jim Gaffigan, Jerry Seinfeld

Very Funny: Natasha Leggero, Joe Rogan, Russel Peters, Kumail Nanjiani, Mike DeStefano, Gabriel Iglesias, Myq Caplan, Stephen Lynch, Daniel Tosh, Jim Carrey, Joan Rivers, Maria Bamford, Patton Oswalt, Mike Birbiglia, Larry The Cable Guy, Demetri Martin, Kyle Ceese, Bill Burr, David Cross, Steven Wright, Doug Stanhope, Dwayne Perkins

Funny: Aziz Ansari, Zach Galifianakis, Sarah Silverman, Whitney Cummings, Nick DePaolo, Bill Engvall, Lewis Black, Ricky Gervais, Richard Jeni, Woody Allen, Sinbad, Rodney Dangerfield, Frank Caliendo, Jim Breuer, Jimmy Kimmel, Jeff Foxworthy

Sometimes Funny: Margaret Cho, Mitch Hedberg, Billy Connolly, Bill Hicks, Carlos Mencia, Norm MacDonald, Robert Klein, John Pinette

Entertaining: Robin Williams, Pablo Francisco

Hackneyed/Old: Denis Leary

Just Not Funny: Dane Cook

Notes on the list:

-Everyone ‘Funny’ and up is actually funny, like A+ to B+.

-Some people are moving positions, up or down. Dave Atell’s latest CD wasn’t ‘Hilarious’, so he’s still riding his first one (it was that good). Ricky Gervais used to be ‘Very Funny’. And Kumail Nanjiani will probably be ‘Hilarious’ soon.

-To be ‘Hilarious’, you need to A) have a unique and perfect act (material, timing, presentation), and B) have some genius bits. If you have one of those, but not the other, you’re either ‘Classic’ or ‘Very Funny’.

-I left off the ‘old greats’ who broke ground in their day, but aren’t very funny anymore.

I know I probably left off a bunch that I just can’t think of, so if you have any suggestions, let me know and I’ll add them to the list.


5 Responses to “Comedian Rankings”

  1. AH July 13, 2011 at 2:57 am #

    John Pinette…

  2. itchemeyer July 13, 2011 at 6:13 am #

    He’s sometimes funny.

  3. Ben July 13, 2011 at 6:13 pm #


  4. Ben Kaye July 13, 2011 at 8:02 pm #

    How did Mitch Hedberg lose to Brian Regan on that list?!

    Mitch is the best! And putting Zach Galifianakis on “funny?” Such an insult to humor, man…

  5. itchemeyer July 13, 2011 at 10:38 pm #

    I know talking about MH and ZG in less than glowing terms is a major faux pas, but hear me out.
    Mitch is popular because he’s dead and has become a cult icon, like Bill hicks. Both aren’t polished comedians. Their acts have funny parts and big holes.
    Zach G. is popular now because he speaks to the hipster crowd. He’s actually funny and has a good act with some original schtick. But he’s not great. Same thing with Mencia. He had a very likeable personality going on, and it made him popular, until people realized he just wasnt funny. (I’m not comparing Galif and Mencia on comedy, G’s actually funny, just the idea.)
    Brian Regan is awesome and original. He’s been mimicked so much you don’t realize it’s all his stuff. He is the father of comedy today: Awkward, honest and silly.

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