I don’t want to be the “I knew them before they were cool” person, but I did start listening to John Mulaney’s stand-up in 2012. So I am declaring myself a person who can spot stars on the rise. And yes, this is going on the ‘special skills’ portion of my resume. My credentials are watching a lot of comedy and doing stand-up once. So I would say I’m very qualified.
This list was compiled by people who have put out work visible on the internet in the last year. There are many amazing comedians who haven’t been on talk shows, had their own special, or been making content for the internet. Unfortunately, this just makes it harder to judge. I think these comedians have the largest reach.
I was introduced to Patti Harrison when I watched Hulu’s Shrill. Her absurdist, flat tone humor throws a wrench in people’s typical opinion on what comedy should be. In addition, she has a podcast “A Woman’s Smile” with Lorelei Ramirez, which explored their hard past with dark humor. However, keep in mind she says herself it is a “very dark, layered podcast that I would not consider ‘entry-level’ listening I guess“.
Joel Kim Booster
Another actor featured on Shrill. I swear this is not a Shrill ad, I just really like the show. You can listen to his podcast “Urgent Care with Joel Kim Booster and Mitra Jouhari” where the pair give “completely unqualified advice to people who apparently have nowhere else to turn“. He also released a podcast with equally hilarious comedian Matt Rogers, called “Matt, Joel, and the Next Elle Woods”. In which they discuss the 2008 MTV reality show Legally Blonde the Musical: The Search For the Next Elle Woods.
Taylor Tomlinson started gaining attention when she appeared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and Conan. She released on a comedy special on Netflix this past March that all twenty-somethings should place on their watchlist immediately. She also has two podcasts “Self-Helpless” and “This is Important to Me with Sam Morrison and Taylor Tomlinson”.
You may know Nate Bargatze from his Netflix special The Tennessee Kid which debuted in 2019. He also recently debuted a podcast titled “The Nateland Podcast”. He performs comedy that feels very relatable and never talks down to his audience.
Naomi Ekperigin co-hosts the podcast “Couples Therapy” with partner Andy Beckerman. She has also worked in the writer’s room of Broad City and Great News. Her style of comedy is upbeat while also avoiding dumbing down her content.
These comedians excel at writing and acting, but their stand-up is not accessible on the internet. However, they produce great comedic content and are forces to be reckoned with.
Jordan Firstman is the powerful brains behind the hilarious video shown above. He has also written for Search Party and The Other Two. I think my favorite thing about his work has to be his Instagram, @jtfirstman, where he does incredibly specific impersonations from “Someone Truly Seen and Accepted for the First Time” to his most popular “The Publicist for Banana Bread“.
Like many comedians, Sudi Green is an Upright Citizens Brigade performer who made her way into the writer’s room at Saturday Night Live. She is an NYU alum who frequently writes for the comedy site, Reductress.
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