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Comedy Week: 20 Comedians To Watch In 2014

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Michael Che is a new comedian to watch We have our comedic icons like Richard Pryor and Jim Belushi, and living legends such as Eddie Murphy and Jerry Seinfeld. We’re clear that our Kings of Comedy are masters like Chris Rock and Louis CK. But which funny men and women will make up that next generation of genius jokesters isn’t so clear. This is where we come in. To cap off our gut-busting #Comedyweek we’ve decided to inform our entrusted who got next in the world of comedy. Here’s our Top 20 list (in order). Warning: do not consume food or beverage when viewing, or while in an environment which asks for quiet. No joke.

1. Michael Che @CheThinks

Born: New York City

Current Fame: SNL, writer (NBC)

Style: Fresh & Direct

Funniest memory before the age of 10…

When I was six, I saw a porno and the guy put his dong in a hot dog bun. I laughed uncontrollably. but then when I saw the lady try to eat it, shit got real.

Favorite SNL character

I have so many favorites, but if I had to choose it'd probably be Tracy Morgan's “Woodrow.” He lives in a sewer and writes sweet nonsensical ballads about “doo-doo pies.” It’s perfectly insane.

First time on stage

An open mic in the west village. I got really drunk beforehand. I have no idea how well or bad I did. It was probably a terrible set, but it just felt right. I got onstage every day for the next however many years.

Who is hilarious but doesn't realize how funny they are?

Any bigot. Bigots are hysterical, and they have no idea. I can talk to a bigot for hours, and not even in a condescending way. I just love ridiculous sweeping generalizations.

If you weren’t a comedian, which occupation would you have?

I’d be a guy at a job he hated, daydreaming of ways to sue the city, and never work again. I used to do that all the time: sit and wonder, “How hard do I have to get hit by a city bus to sue for millions, yet still have functioning limbs and penis?”

While masturbating, what ethnicity is the person you're envisioning?

When I'm masturbating, I envision my women like my coffee: dark, hot, foreign, and hiding cocaine.

Your Miss Right loves comedians. When you meet her, your first line will be…

Knock knock, bitch!

What’s next?

Hopefully, I'll keep writing for [SNL] and tour on the off weeks. It’s a fun pace. Next year, I'd like to record a comedy album titled, Beyonce's New Album. Catch the Lucas Brothers on FOX2. The Lucas Brothers (twin brothers, Keith and Kenny) @Lucasbros

Born: High Point, North Carolina

Current Fame: The Lucas Bros Moving Co. (FOX ADHD)

Style: Lazy and clean

Brief synopsis of your animated show

Kenny: It’s a show about two dudes who run a small business in Brooklyn. They’re ordinary, but live in a world where their decisions often lead to chaos. Most times their logic is incredibly valid, but not very sound.

Is it true that one of you wanted to be a wrestler and the other a lawyer?

Kenny: We both wanted to be professional wrestlers, but realized that there weren’t many opportunities for 5’7 skinny black twins in professional wrestling. So, we eventually gravitated toward academics, and decided on law when we were in college.

Why did you two make the joint decision to pursue comedy?

Keith: We both hated law school. Kenny started doing comedy first.

Kenny: Yeah, I convinced Keith to drop out toward the end of law school. He was apprehensive, but he didn’t want to take his finals.

Before FOX your biggest check as comedians came from…

Keith: We shot a web series for NBA 2K (videogame) in Las Vegas.

Favorite twins historically

Keith: Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito (from the movie Twins). They helped change our minds regarding fraternal twins. We use to believe that they didn’t count, but after the movie, we believed in them. Roy Wood Jr. puts on a mean stand-up show3. Roy Wood Jr. @roywoodjr

From: Alabama

Current Fame: Sullivan & Son (TBS)

Style: Charismatic Crankiness

Why are you so cranky?

I spend a lot of time on stage irate about things that don’t matter. Most of society is fixated on Obamacare and the war. I choose to ponder why a small soda at the movie theatre ($8) costs twice as much as a gallon of gas ($4). It’d be cheaper to just drink gas.

Scariest moment ever in Alabama was…

About two years into my career, in Dothan, AL, I did a show with four other comedians for a group of drug dealers turned party promoters. Some black promoters are slow to pay, as was the case this night. The drug dealers offered to pay us in COCAINE. We declined the drugs and demanded cash. Within 30 seconds three men pulled out Glock 9mm pistols and “begged” us to reconsider. I agreed to do the show, but then asked for permission to go to my car to get my cell phone charger. I hopped in the car and drove off.

You are funnier than…

Everyone in my family, except my Uncle Derix. Only person I know who makes Kool-Aid on a stovetop. He tells me, “The secret to good Kool-Aid is the warm the water!”

Biggest check as a comedian came from…

I got cast in a pilot for FOX. The show didn’t get picked up but I still saw a five-digit check. Damien Lemon provides hilarious commentary on MTV's Guy Code4. Damien Lemon @dlemoncomedy

From: Harlem

Current Fame: Guy Code (MTV2)

Style: Emotionless insight

Funniest memory before the age of 10…

My mother sent me to school on Halloween as Nick Ashford (from Ashford & Simpson)––just my Easter suit and a placard that said “Nick Ashford.” It's only funny in retrospect. My white teacher didn't know who the hell I was.

Your biggest check as a comedian came from…

I won't name the company, but I will say they don't write checks, they write swooshes.

You're a better comedian than…

I was yesterday. (Damn! That was diplomatic) No Kendrick Lamar “Control” verse controversy over here.

Your Miss Right loves comedians. When you meet her, your first line will be…

I hear you like comedy, why don't you open for me and let me do a solid 15 minutes. Lil Rel is hilarious.5. Lil Rel @LilRel4

Born: Chicago

Current Fame: In Living Color reboot (FOX)

Style: Chicago storytelling

What the hell happened to the In Living Color reboot?

One of the greatest experiences of my life was working with Keenen Ivory Wayans. Honestly, it opened a bunch of doors for me, but at the end of the day you have to ask Keenen.

You knew comedy was your calling when…

In high school––my senior year. I did a play in high school and it was really rocking. After the last show I sat in the auditorium by myself and asked God to guide me to do what I love which was making people laugh. True story. God is faithful and keeps his word!

If you weren’t a comedian, which occupation would you have?

I would be a teacher. Come on, I wear glasses, that's the only job for me [Laughs].

What’s next?

I'm on the new Shaq’s Comedy All Stars, which airs Saturday Feb. 1st on Showtime, I just shot a pilot with Tru TV––it’s a sketch show; I'm currently touring and I'm on a lot of TV this year. It’s my time! Check out Jerrod Carmichael and the other funnymen of the future6. Jerrod Carmichael @NotoriousROD

7. Jermaine Fowler @jermaineFOWLER

Watch Jermaine here

8. Baron Vaughn @Barvonblaq

9. Seaton Smith @SeatonSmith

10. Owen Smith @OwenSmith4Real

11. Chris DiStefano @chrisdcomedy

12. Kevin Barnett @Fatboybarnett

Watch Kevin here

13. Dan Soder @DanSoder

Watch Dan here

14. Yannis Pappas @yannispappas

15. Carmen Lynch @Lynchcarmen

16. Joe Mande @JoeMande

Watch Joe here

17. Sheng Wang @shengwangtime

Watch Sheng here

18. Marina Franklin @marinayfranklin

19. Aperna Nancherla @aparnapkin

20. Kamial Nanjiani @kumailn

Watch Kamial here

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