Some of the best comedy moments defy categorization but that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve recognition. Some of these ‘awards’ are genuine and some of them are a little tongue in cheek. Here are some of our favorite award-worthy happenings in comedy in 2018.
As all CQ fans know, Twitter kind of sucks. But every now and then you uncover a gem of a Twitter account. This year’s award goes to someone who is hilarious every damn day whether she’s posting great clips commenting on the rest of us idiots or just being silly. It’s Jessica Kirson! Give her that follow @jessicakirson.
Last year we gave Judd Apatow an award for being the most active activist on social media. But sometimes the hero we need is a Re-Activist. This year’s award can only go to Corrinne Fisher for her unselfishly stepping up every time there’s a bullshit controversy and backing up her fellow comedians who have found themselves in the crosshairs of the social media mob. Nobody is right all the time on Twitter but we love that Corrinne is never afraid to say what she thinks and we love it. In 2019, that’s what bravery looks like.
The biggest news in comedy buddies this year that we can’t get enough of is Jerry Seinfeld taking a liking to Mark Normand. It started with a comment on a podcast that Jerry had been hearing good things about Mark Normand. Then later in the year, Seinfeld called Mark Normand the best young comic we should keep our eye on during an SNY broadcast. The next thing you know the two are having lunch, and then in November Normand joined Seinfeld on stage at the Beacon. There was even footage of the two running across the stage like kids playing tag. We love this bromance and can’t wait to see where it goes next.
We hate to rip on any good effort, we’ll usually just ignore shitty comedy. But sometimes you just have to call out garbage. NBC’s Bring the Funny was the networks attempt to recreate the success of their comedy competition show Last Comic Standing. LCS was not brilliant but it was watchable and gave exposure to some really talented comedians. But NBC wanted more- a bigger and broader audience- and tried to create a show that was closer to America’s Got Talent, but only covered comedy with a new series called Bring the Funny. The show did not bring funny or a broad audience. It was so bad, that reviewers didn’t even want to acknowledge its existence. The show threw into one big box stand up comics, sketch groups, musical groups, and improv and the result was just awful. We tapped out after watching the judges slam Ian Lara, whose a great young up and coming comic who had a great performance. Please go away, Bring the Funny. We’re ready for LCS 10.
Jim Norton wins this one for ripping off the great Don Rickels in his stand up performance in the movie The Irishman. He’s doing Rickels material, Rickels mannerisms, the whole thing. He’s not going to get away with this!
Most Valuable Podcast Guest, also known as the “everyone wants you on their podcast or radio show” award goes to Kerryn Feehan. Is there a show that doesn’t have Kerryn as a guest? If there is, its only because they’re afraid to ask.
Tim Dillon proved to be the king of the holy shit, wtf, that’s fucked up viral video in 2019. They’re hilarious and sometimes imitate celebrities. They almost always include wigs. And its a guarantee that someone’s going to be insulted by them. And that’s why we love them so much. Whether its a Boomer Christmas, channeling Meghan McCain, posing as Hollywood’s top agent, talking about #titantrump or dressing up as Jeffrey Epstein’s temple. Never change Tim Dillon you’re the best of the best.
The best festival drop ins are total surprises- a comedian shows up at a show that you would never expect to see them at. Nothing fits that description better than Louis C.K. dropping in at Skankfest. It was a showcase show, with killer comedians on the lineup in the main room at Skankfest NYC in Brooklyn. Behind the scenes there were whispers that Louis was onsite, but wasn’t planning to perform; he was just coming to hang out and see the festival. While Ron Bennington was on stage, he made the decision to pop on stage and when Luis J. Gomez announced him, the place went bonkers. A video of the standing ovation went viral and everyone in the room felt like they were lucky to be there.
This award goes to Pete Davidson who took the trend of comedians finding new ways to protect their material to the most ridiculous level possible, requiring ticket purchasers to sign a contract that subjects them to liquidated damages of 1 million dollars if they record material, distribute material, quote material, post about the show, give opinions about the show or even compliment the show. The bar association, of course, is thrilled and can’t wait to start getting those billable hours.
This also qualifies as the winner of the “Biggest Overreaction to a Shitty Audience Member” award, since it came out of an encounter where Pete lectured a young audience about not following rules. You’ll show them Pete!!!
Forget Al Gore, the best recycling is comedy recycling. And this year’s very best instance of bringing something back goes to Colin Quinn for re-releasing Cop Show on his Instagram account. It’s the best thing on television, that’s not on television.
Every year there’s a new comedian who can’t stay out of the tabloids. Everything they do is news- where they eat, who they date, if they got tattoos, what they’re wearing, what sports team they want to win, where they’re working out, what they’re doing with their kids. This year’s award for the most pervasive self promotion goes to Kevin Hart. Hart’s every move is news and the gossip rags can’t get enough. This year Hart had plenty of actual news to cover, but when there wasn’t anything newsworthy happening, we knew what he was doing.
Eddie Murphy is back! How long have we waited for Murphy to come back and be funny for adults? It feels like forever. 2019 brought Murphy back with a great movie, Dolemite Is My Name, a nostalgia-filled episode of Saturday Night Live, the most interesting episode of Comedians in Cars Drinking Coffee yet, and (fingers crossed) a return to standup for 2020?
Also could have been titled as the Best Choice Of A Middle Name for a Baby Award. Congratulations to Dave Attell for having the world’s most famous baby take your name as his middle, and Congratulations to Gene Attell getting a middle name that is comedy royalty. And of course, big congrats to Amy Schumer and her husband Chris Fisher for choosing such a great name. You could have gone with Gene Keith Fisher but it just wouldn’t have had the same ring to it.
Last year we started this award to give recognition to Joe Rogan, who changed the direction of a major billion dollar company after talking Elon Musk into getting a little ripped with him and the news went viral. This year’s most dangerous podcast award goes to Ari Shaffir. And you all know why.
Larry Charles: The Dangerous World of Comedy is the most info-taining show out this year. It’s brilliant and funny and you won’t hate learning something.
Comics have toured with friends since comedy began. It became more popular in the 80’s and disappeared for a bit, but the multi-comedian tour has become more common again, and we’re loving it. Bumping Mics with Dave Attell and Jeff Ross; Kreeps with Kids with Robert Kelly, Ron Bennington, Rich Vos and Jim Florentine; Bobcat and Dana Gould; Luis J Gomez and Kurt Metzger; Roseanne and Dice we love all of them. Two or Three or Four Headliners for the price of one? You can’t get a better ticket.
The album is the new podcast. Everyone has one! Or two! Or three! Now that the secret’s out that streaming services will pay comics for streaming recorded tracks, everyone is in a hurry to record an album. With literally hundreds of albums released this year, the market is being crammed full of mediocre to just plain bad recordings and it’s not a good look. It also means that anyone putting out really good albums that are worth hearing get swallowed up by the sea of shite. The good news is, it’s temporary. With thousands of new tracks coming out every year, the spin count is about to go down sharply, so this trend should be just about done.