Do You Have to Work Blue? Seven Clean Comedians


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The world of stand-up comedy has done a complete 180 from what it used to be, with so called ‘dirty’ comedians being the norm as apposed to comics that work clean. A comic that refuses to swear or talk about taboo topics might seem strange in a world where ‘shit in your mother’s cunt’ has become an acceptable punchline. Here are seven that go against the mold and have acts that even your mother could enjoy.

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Gaffigan has been performing for years and won over audiences with his attitudes toward being lazy and his gluttony. Touching on topics that every American can relate is part of the reason why Gaffigan is so popular and has helped him release his 2012 special independently and land a television pilot at CBS.

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Even the most vulgar and disgusting comedian will admit how gut-bustingly funny Brian Regan is. Using observational humor that reaches on self-deprecating, Regan has developed an act that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and has had him playing theaters all across the country for years. Regan’s ability to find humor in the most basic of topics has put him into the upper eschelon of comics and many consider him to be the ‘comedians comedian’.

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You may not expect someone who toured with Dane Cook & to make this list, but Gary Gulman’s fine tuned act has made him one of the funniest and most likable touring comedians. Being a clean comedian is somewhat of an art form, and Gulman shows that in his his perfectly fleshed out bits, which include a 13 minute closing bit about cookies on his 2005 album ‘Boyish Man’.

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John Hodgman may not have much choice when it comes to be labeled as a ‘clean’ comedian as it’s tough to touch on topics like sex and drugs when you’re discussing Ragnarök and Norse mythology. A graduate of Yale University, Hodgman has been a contributor on ‘’, and written three books in addition to working as a touring comedian.

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As the youngest member on this list, Ron G will make no qualms about his status as a clean comedian. A recent finalist on ‘’ in 2008, Ron G has quickly made his way to becoming a touring comedian in a business where young age brings the expectation of vulgar humor.

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Arguably the most famous impressionist of the last decade, Frank Caliendo has amassed a large fan base with a seemingly endless array of recognizable impressions that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and backgrounds. A cast member on MADtv for five seasons, Caliendo has had his own TV show, a two year stint in Vegas, a trip to the White House correspondents dinner, and a regular on Fox’s NFL countdown proving that working clean can get you places.

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Ryan Hamilton has established himself as one of the best up-and-coming comedians working today, even performing as a regular at NYC’s Comedy Cellar, despite being a ‘clean’ comedian. Hamilton has performed on several TV shows as well as being named one of Rolling Stone’s five comedians to watch and has developed an act that makes you forget that he is even working clean.

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10 comments
AntonioJB
AntonioJB

What about Tom Papa, I saw him live opening for Jerry Seinfeld and he's one of the funniest guys I've ever seen..

Deafhead
Deafhead

Seinfeld, Kathleen Madigan are obvious big name omissions

Juniorsampled
Juniorsampled

" It's the aristocrats..."  They won't be telling that joke.

sstellwagon
sstellwagon

I'm going to see Regan for the first time this weekend in Philly, should be a lot of fun

cal5000
cal5000

Funny is funny, one sound/word over another makes no difference to me. 

Clover leaf
Clover leaf

Gaffigan get's a little more risque every time I see him.That being said  I still think the worst thing I've ever heard him say is "ass" though so it's not like he's setting crosses on fire or anything.

Vickroy
Vickroy

Love Brian Regan. Pretty much how i introduced comedy to my son. He'd play his youtube videos ad nausaum. We eventually saw him live. I've seen him a bunch.

Recyclerz
Recyclerz

This is probably Shelby's list. He scoffs at the contributions of those that came before him. It's his pleasure.