Top 10 Stand Up Comedy Shows of 2020

Microphone Stage Shadow Curtain Stand Up Comedy
Microphone Stage Shadow Curtain Stand Up Comedy

Comedians are creating a sensation for comedy. Comedians have become a big part of our lives, especially now, and these comedians have become integral to the social commentary of the world. Comedy is becoming the new wave of entertainment and is gaining the much-deserved respect from the people all over. It gives a realistic presentation of people, society and hypocrisy juxtaposed with humour and music.

Hey, guys welcome back to Watch Tank, today we are counting down our picks for top 10 stand-up comedy shows.

10. Yvonne Orji, Momma, I Made It!

Comedian -  Yvonne Orji At NAACP Image Awards
Comedian – Yvonne Orji At NAACP Image Awards

Momma, I Made It is a surprise for Yvonne Orji’s fans, from a TV show called Insecure to a comedian. She plays the role of Molly in the series, so much that the fine line between Molly and Orji is blurred. She confesses how she is often referred to as Molly at home. The show is mostly about her Nigerian background and her family. Her experience as immigrants is touched upon. There are some hilarious moments when she differentiates between a Nigerian American and African American. She adds clips from a trip she took back home when she went to visit her family. This simply acquaints the audience with her roots and pride her family feels in Orji’s work. This stand up may not be like most shows dealing with society or realism. Still, it lets you appreciate one of the many talents of Yvonne Orji, beyond a particular role and respecting her background.

9. Taylor Tomlinson, Quarter-Life Crisis

Taylor Tomlinson climbed the ladder of a successful comedian at an early age. She was a part of Netflix’s The Comedy Line up two years ago. It was her performance in Last Comic Standing, in 2015, after which her comedian appearance began to rise. She has also appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and Conan. Quarter-Life Crisis is a fun and easy watch. She mocks people announcing social media breaks on social media and the concept of online dating. She points out the illogical comparison some women make between getting pregnant to having a dog. She has a lot to say about young adults, even though she belongs to the same age. Her experiences are limited, and so is her humour. She has foresightedness, but a polish in her tone is yet to be developed. She can be referred to as the Goldilocks of comedy, and she has a show planned just right.

8. Leslie Jones, Time Machine

Comedian - Leslie Jones at The Stress Factory
Comedian – Leslie Jones at The Stress Factory

Time Machine has been probably one of the most honest stand-up comedy of 2020 so far. This is proved in the very beginning as we see Leslie Jones enter with a knee brace visible over her jeans. She will make things comfortable right from her appearance to an energetic show. The apt use of the title takes us back to her twenties where she tries to have a conversation between her younger self and present self. While she touches upon the tales from her 20s, she also draws a comparison of people in their 20s in recent times.

Like she pointed at one girl in the front row in her twenties wearing Little House on the Prairie sweater, where she was supposed to show more skin in that age. Leslie Jones is both raw and savage, and most importantly, she is enjoying herself. Time Machine is Leslie Jones’ first Netflix special. We have also seen her giving an outstanding performance on Saturday Night Live. Leslie will leave you with a smile and more of a life lesson, to just live your present.

7. Fortune Feimster, Sweet & Salty

Comedian - Fortune Feimster
Comedian – Fortune Feimster

Fortune has not been a new face on Netflix, and she performed in the first season of The Stand-ups in 2017. Fortune Feimster has also made an appearance in shows like The Mindy Project.

Chelsea Fortune Feimster is a writer, actor and a seasoned comedian and her first stand-up comedy special portrays comfort on stage. Her show Sweet and Salty aptly describes her journey from childhood to her realization that she was a lesbian. She describes serious issues in a casual tone.

Her experiences range from her first birthday party, her relationship with the church, appreciating her love for food and most importantly appreciating her body. She talks about her swimming misadventures and experiences with Hooters. Fortune confesses she was a tomboy while her mother couldn’t come in terms with the fact that her daughter wasn’t “lady-like” and didn’t like dressing up the way other girls would. Her mother’s sense of feminine style was imposed on her.

Fortune didn’t realize she was a lesbian till she attended a women’s college, and she discovered the truth of her personality while watching The Truth About Jane. The show is an honest experience of how to come in terms with ourselves. It is her truth that the LGBTQ crowd can connect to.

6. Maria Bamford, Weakness Is the Brand

Comedian - Maria Bamford
Comedian – Maria Bamford

Maria Bamford’s greatness is proved in this show where she talks about her flaws. Weakness Is the Brand touches upon mental health and people who are entwined with anxiety and depression. While the world thinks they are doing better, they are just doing worse. Maria Bamford’s mastery in delivery is seen when she jokes about such serious stuff. She also touches upon suicide, alt-right trolls, sexual roleplay and labour. She confesses how she is stuck between being a good Christian and a good mother and is unaware of which role she plays better. Maria Bamford also compares herself with a blind pug who is stuck in a kitchen while searching for dog food. All her personal experiences are framed, and she looks right into the camera to deliver it just right.

5. Marc Maron, End Times Fun

Comedian - Marc Maron
Comedian – Marc Maron

Marc Maron hosted Air America as a seasoned comedian and actor who waxed his 7th comedy special about the end of our times. The show came out on the 10th of March, right at the cusp of America’s time with Covid-19 and after the massive violent protests about racism and the police system. He brings forward the harsh realities and provides a bigger picture of serious issues we all are supposed to be worried about.

From global warming to the disturbing politics of the right-wing, he got us all covered in the full 1 hour and 30 minutes to his show. All of this is presented in a perfect amalgamation of witty observation juxtaposed with subtle humour. He states how all of us are out of answers or reasons as to why we follow certain norms. All of us are powerless against the cacophonous lunacy. In the end of the show, we are taken to Marc Maron’s imaginative apocalyptic scenario. It was surreal, though a little vulgar. It is a world where The Avengers and Jesus become A-team, which adds on to his hour of honest comedy. The show was initially titled ‘Jeremiad’. But Netflix voted for End Times Fun, a far more reasonable name.

4. Patton Oswalt, I Love Everything

Comedian - Patton Oswalt Speaking At The San Diego Comic Con
Comedian – Patton Oswalt Speaking At The San Diego Comic Con

Patton Oswalt has previously done two comedy specials on Netflix and had been nominated for both a Grammy and Emmy. Talking for Clapping won both awards.

He is also known for providing voiceover for famous shows like Netflix’s BoJack Horseman and ABC’s The Goldbergs. He starts his presentation by confessing that he’s in his 50s. He IS not happy with 50, so he wishes to be on his 90s soon. He has weird yet hilarious reasons to substantiate his choice.

Patton Oswalt is seen drawing a comparison between people in their 20s and 40s. We will see him go back in time and have a good laugh. He makes some bizarre comparison between his sexual powers at 50 to an understaffed McDonald’s during rush hour. He also compares cereals to unpopular teenage poetry. He seems to be most comfortable and at his best when he makes such comparison, and all we are left with is laughter.

3. Hannah Gadsby, Douglas

 Comedian - Hannah Gadsby Speaking At The TED2019
Comedian – Hannah Gadsby Speaking At The TED2019

Hannah Gadsby is just like many women who have been hiding and holding down their anger about social issues they have been a part of. Gadsby has confidently used the platform of a stand-up to bring out the common bugs of society wrapped in the foil of humour. While you can laugh at her jokes all you want, it will subtly leave behind a thought-provoking message. In Nanette, she publicly quit stand-up. However, in 2020, she made her entry back as a comedian in Douglas. Hannah mentions that this show, Douglas, was named after her dog.

She made a similar revelation about her previous show Nanette, which was named after a woman she met. Such out of the box ideas or names or connection can stick through an entire conversation. She is so realistic, especially with the way she brings out the shape of patriarchal society. She talks about these nuances but never seems to question them. She generates more applause lines than laughter and generates admiration through comedic discussion versus just stating ideas. The audience that has appreciated her since Nanette was expecting a little too much from Douglas. Hannah does want us to understand her humour, but Douglas definitely lacked some. It’s not the traditional comedy, she will make you rethink the misunderstood concepts, but the question is how many shows does she require to do that?

2. Eric Andre, Legalize Everything

Comedian - Eric Andre FYF Fest 2012
Comedian – Eric Andre FYF Fest 2012

Eric Andre is the most audience-friendly stand-up comedian you will ever notice. He doesn’t just simply perform comedy; he does comedy. You will see him jumping to the crowd and indulging in a lot of audience interaction that you will ever witness. Every time you watch him, it gets funnier, crazier and more energetic. In Eric Andre’s Legalize Everything, his first Netflix comedy special, he makes you question the society’s racism problem and the legal authority affecting it at large. He talks about the drugs he has taken while he is all over the stage and mocking the police. He is so loud and boisterous, you can’t avoid the chuckle.

Before we take you to our number 1 pick, here are some special mentions.

  • Pete Davidson: Alive From New York
  • Bert Kreischer: Hey Big Boy

1. Tom Papa, You’re Doing Great

Tom Papa marks his debut on Netflix with his comedy special, “You’re Doing Great”. Tom has genuinely got your back as his show promises some inspirational upliftment. He is a famous radio host of Sirius’s “Come to Papa” and a head writer of “Live from Here” for APM. The top gives us a reality check in a humorous tone. He makes us reflect on the times when life was not guided by social media.

He appreciates people in the younger times, mostly in their adolescent period, enjoying a box full of doughnuts and a bunch of friends and being satisfied in the limited number of choices. He reminds and makes us revisit the good old days and draws a comparison between her himself and his two daughters who enjoy the privilege of ‘choices’. They have choices to make between the ice-creams too, while he thanks sample spoons. The talks about the negativity news channels keep spreading in the name of news, and despite all the odd times in our lives and difficulties, Tom reminds “You’re Doing Great”.

The title of the show lets you be at ease and tells you to ease out. He leaves us not only with a smile but some hope too. “You’re Doing Great” can calm you down and shake you back to your senses while you got carried away with otherwise avoidable cacophony.

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