My Top 20 Favorite Funny Things Ever (Non-Stand Up Comedy)
#10 - #1
10 – Asssscat
Not stand up, but sketch. This is pretty high for a stage show I saw just one time. If you’ve ever wondered why anyone would spend money to see improv comedy, this is the reason. From the people who created Upright Citizen’s Brigade (Amy Poehler, Matt Besser, Matt Walsh, Ian Roberts) and a slew of comics and actors along for the ride. They perform; have videos and a podcast with reruns. If you have the chance to see it, you will love it.
9 - Late Night with David Letterman
I guess there’s another guy hosting this show now. He’s supposed to be just fine, but I don’t give a shit. This is the show that I stayed up for when I was a kid. This is the show that was weird and stupid and bizarre and sarcastic and fun. I know Dave’s still on the air on CBS, but it’s not the show that I remember. This show fused itself into my brain.
8 - Conan O’Brien
Oh, Conesy. Coco. Knocked around three networks but still as funny and pale as ever. Conan makes me laugh because even with 20 years of success he still hates himself, just like the rest of us nerdlingers.
7 - The Howard Stern Show
I listened to every single Stern show in Orlando from 1997 to 2002 or so before it was yanked off the air because of conservative complaints. Every single one. Talk radio is as addictive as heroin and Howard started everything.
6 - Tina Fey/Alec Baldwin
This is kind of a cheat, but I replaced 30 Rock with the two people I always want to see. I love Tina Fey. Didn’t give a damn about SNL when she was on, but this show is so self-deprecating, sly, quick, goofy and original I felt like an idiot for not appreciating her before. Baldwin has always been a cool actor, but his scenes steal nearly every episode. I can’t believe he wants to leave the show. What the hell?
5 - The Kids In The Hall
My favorite sketch thing ever. Either you got it, or you didn’t. One thing I will add though; I recently watched a few episodes and I never realized how incredibly dark this show could be. The sketches ooze with rich, thick sarcasm. If you missed it, give it a try. Try to ignore the early 90’s fashion.
4 - The Adam Carolla Show
What’s that you say? Can’t listen to Adam because he’s too manly or loud or right wing? Well you’re correct and incorrect at the same time. I’ve been a listener of the show and podcast for about six years or so and I’m a sensitive lefty. Insanely gifted at improv and jokes and more opinionated than any human needs to be, his show is just plain funny.
3 - The Office
I forgot how good this show has been. It is the pinnacle of anxious, uncomfortable comedy. I believe it made the most of the mockumentary style – the characters are the most fleshed out. It has its cartoony moments, but because of solid writing you go along with it. I always identified with Jim, less the pranking. Watching the relationship of Pam and Jim evolve from a small town affair, to a boring small town couple, to a boring small time married couple with kids may be one of the most genuine stories on TV.
2 -Family Guy
Family Guy isn’t better than South Park. It’s funnier. Get the sticks out of your butts and enjoy a few obscure references and a fart joke or two. It won't kill you.
1 - The Daily Show / The Colbert Report
We owe the creators of these shows a mountain of gratitude. Have you forgotten the past decade? Bush, wars, global financial meltdown and a media gone berserk? Was there anything better than the beacon of humor and satire and sunshine than Stewart and Colbert? I, like the rest of America paralyzed with fear, had to tune into a comedy network for sanity and common sense. It's the absolute best place for comedy and accurate reporting. I don’t mind that people get their news from these shows. Not at all. Jon Stewart will be remembered not like Jerry Seinfeld, but like Walter Cronkite.
I’m proud that my kids watch these show and laugh along. It's opened up years of conversations and trained them to take what they hear in the world with a grain of salt. I love the correspondents, (Steve Carell and Jason Jones among my favorites) and there has never been a dud.
My wife would have an affair with Stephen Colbert. It’s the truth. I’ve been warned. His persona is so perfectly honed, his show is both scathing and sweet, I may have to step aside and let it happen. It's a flawless show in the best hour of comedy on TV.
See, I did it!