Character comedy

Character comedy is a method or genre in which a comedian performs as though they were a character created by the comedian themselves. A good deal of comedians have enjoyed fame from character comedy.

Famous comedians who use character comedy


  1. ^ "How long can it go on?". Sydney Morning Herald. 25 October 2007.
Brian Barlow

Brian Barlow is a Canadian comedian and actor, originally from Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. He is known The Loner Show, a monthly solo character comedy show in Toronto, which allowed anything but stand-up performance. The Loner Show was part of "Laugh Sabbath", a collective of comedians that performed every Sunday at The Rivoli. His age is unknown.

Brian's most popular character is Poppa Proppa, Canada's Oldest Prop Comic He currently resides in Los Angeles, California.

Character (arts)

A character (sometimes known as a fictional character) is a person or other being in a narrative (such as a novel, play, television series, film, or video game). The character may be entirely fictional or based on a real-life person, in which case the distinction of a "fictional" versus "real" character may be made. Derived from the ancient Greek word χαρακτήρ, the English word dates from the Restoration, although it became widely used after its appearance in Tom Jones in 1749. From this, the sense of "a part played by an actor" developed. Character, particularly when enacted by an actor in the theatre or cinema, involves "the illusion of being a human person". In literature, characters guide readers through their stories, helping them to understand plots and ponder themes. Since the end of the 18th century, the phrase "in character" has been used to describe an effective impersonation by an actor. Since the 19th century, the art of creating characters, as practiced by actors or writers, has been called characterisation.A character who stands as a representative of a particular class or group of people is known as a type. Types include both stock characters and those that are more fully individualised. The characters in Henrik Ibsen's Hedda Gabler (1891) and August Strindberg's Miss Julie (1888), for example, are representative of specific positions in the social relations of class and gender, such that the conflicts between the characters reveal ideological conflicts.The study of a character requires an analysis of its relations with all of the other characters in the work. The individual status of a character is defined through the network of oppositions (proairetic, pragmatic, linguistic, proxemic) that it forms with the other characters. The relation between characters and the action of the story shifts historically, often miming shifts in society and its ideas about human individuality, self-determination, and the social order.

Chris Elliott

Christopher Nash Elliott (born May 31, 1960) is an American actor, comedian, and writer. He is best known for his comedic sketches on Late Night with David Letterman, starring in the comedy series Get a Life on Fox TV and Eagleheart on Adult Swim, as well as his recurring roles as Peter MacDougall on Everybody Loves Raymond and as Mickey Aldrin on How I Met Your Mother. He has also starred in the films Cabin Boy, There's Something About Mary, Scary Movie 2, and Groundhog Day. He is currently starring as Roland Schitt on CBC Television's Schitt's Creek.

Comedic genres

Comedy may be divided into multiple genres based on the source of humor, the method of delivery, and the context in which it is delivered.

These classifications overlap, and most comedians can fit into multiple genres. For example, deadpan comics often fall into observational boom comedy, or into black comedy or blue comedy to contrast the morbidity, or offensiveness of the joke with a lack of emotion.

Diet of Worms (comedy group)

Diet of Worms is an Irish comedy and theatre group based in Dublin, Ireland and London, UK, made up of Rory Connolly, Philippa Dunne, Niall Gaffney, Shane Langan and Amy Stephenson. They write and perform sketch and character comedy for stage and screen.

Dr. Jack

Dr. Jack is a 1922 American silent comedy film starring Harold Lloyd. It was produced by Hal Roach and Directed by Fred Newmeyer. The story was by Jean Havez, Hal Roach, and Sam Taylor. The film was released on November 26, 1922.

Grossing $1,275,423, Dr. Jack was one of the top-ten most profitable releases of 1922.

Eirlys Bellin

Eirlys Bellin is a Welsh actress, character comedian and voice-over artist from Cowbridge in South Wales.

Bellin trained at the University of Edinburgh and the Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts. She has been a regular on the London circuit starring in character comedy shows like Spank! And Something For The Weekend. In her hit debut solo show Eirlys Bellin: Reality Check, she performed as Welsh celebrity wannabe Rhian Davies at Holyrood, Edinburgh, Edinburgh in 2007, which spawned many reviews in her favour. Her 2010 Edinburgh Show Unaccustomed As I Am was directed by Logan Murray.

Bellin was also a semi-finalist in Funny Women Awards at the Manchester Comedy Festival.

Fred Armisen

Fereydun Robert "Fred" Armisen (born December 4, 1966) is an American actor, comedian, writer, producer and musician best known as a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 2002 until 2013. Armisen has portrayed characters in comedy films, including EuroTrip, Anchorman and Cop Out. With his comedy partner Carrie Brownstein, Armisen is the co-creator and co-star of the IFC sketch comedy series Portlandia. Armisen founded, a website that features the comedy sketches created with Brownstein, and is the bandleader for the Late Night with Seth Meyers house band, The 8G Band.

For his work on Portlandia, Armisen was nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series in 2012, 2013 and 2014 and for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series in 2014. He has also won two Peabody Awards, one in 2008 as part of the Saturday Night Live political satire cast and one in 2011 for Portlandia.

I Ought to Be in Pictures

I Ought to Be in Pictures is a comedy-drama play written by Neil Simon, his 18th. The play opened on Broadway in 1980. It was subsequently made into a film, released in 1982. The play involves a film screenwriter who has abandoned his family, and his daughter who arrives at his home, seeking his help in becoming an actress.

Jamie Kennedy

James Harvey Kennedy (born May 25, 1970) is an American stand-up comedian, television producer, screenwriter, and actor, He is best known for playing Randy Meeks in the Scream franchise and playing various characters in The Jamie Kennedy Experiment on The WB.

Jim Breuer

James E. Breuer (born June 21, 1967) is an American stand-up comedian, actor, musician, and radio host. He was a cast member on Saturday Night Live from 1995 to 1998 and starred in the film Half Baked.

Jim Carrey

James Eugene Carrey (born January 17, 1962) is a Canadian-American actor, comedian, impressionist, screenwriter, musician, producer, and painter. He is known for his energetic slapstick performances.Carrey first gained recognition in America in 1990 after landing a recurring role in the sketch comedy television series In Living Color. His first leading roles in major productions came with Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994), Dumb and Dumber (1994), The Mask (1994), and Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls (1995), as well as a supporting role in Batman Forever (1995) and a lead role in Liar Liar (1997). He gained critical acclaim starring in serious roles in The Truman Show (1998) and Man on the Moon (1999), with each garnering him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor.

In the 2000s, he gained further popularity for his portrayal of the Grinch in How the Grinch Stole Christmas and for the comedy Me, Myself & Irene (both in 2000), as well as Bruce Almighty (2003), Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) for which he was nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events (2004), Fun with Dick and Jane (2005), Yes Man (2008), Horton Hears a Who! (2008) and A Christmas Carol (2009).

In the 2010s, he has starred in Mr. Popper's Penguins (2011) and The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013), Kick-Ass 2 (2013) and reprised his role as Lloyd Christmas in Dumb and Dumber To (2014). Since 2018, he has portrayed Jeff Piccirillo on the Showtime series Kidding.

Katherine Jakeways

Katherine Jakeways is a British comedian, actor and writer. Her television appearances include Extras, Horrible Histories, Sherlock, Episodes, Trying Again, all 3 series of BBC1's The Armstrong and Miller Show and Miranda. She is also notable as one of the regular cast in the radio series Deep Trouble and Look Away Now and plays Mrs Pepys in Radio 4's continuing Woman's Hour Drama "The Diary of Samuel Pepys". She appeared onstage as Sandy in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest at the Garrick Theatre in 2006, and was the Entire Supporting Cast in Armstrong and Miller's 2010 national tour.

Wednesday 16 June 2010 saw the first episode of her debut radio comedy, North by Northamptonshire, broadcast on BBC Radio 4. The second series was broadcast from 2 December 2011 and the 3rd series was broadcast from December 2013. North by Northamptonshire stars Sheila Hancock, Penelope Wilton, Mackenzie Crook, Kevin Eldon, Geoffrey Palmer and Felicity Montagu. Katherine also plays several parts in the show and after the first series was broadcast the Radio Times said "Katherine Jakeways is the new Victoria Wood. And that’s official. Her character comedy is so acutely observed and so sharp that it’s in danger of causing permanent injury". The second series of North by Northamptonshire was nominated for a Sony Radio Award.

Laura Solon

Laura Madalene Solon (born April 1979) is an English screenwriter, comedian, actress, and winner of the 2005 Perrier Comedy Award. She was the second woman to win as a solo performer, after Jenny Eclair in 1995.

Lolly Adefope

Ololade Adefope (born 14 September 1990 in London) is an English stand-up comedian and actress, specialising in character comedy.As an actress, Adefope has appeared on Together, Josh, Plebs, Rovers and Sick Note. She has also participated as a guest on Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled, The Last Leg, Don't Ask Me Ask Britain, QI, and Taskmaster.

Adefope was selected for the 2015 BBC Writersroom comedy programme.Adefope first performed a solo show at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2015. In 2016 she was nominated for two Chortle Awards.In November 2018, Adefope criticised a comedy gig organised by Harry Hill, raising funds for Duchenne muscular dystrophy, for having an all white line up, saying of the gig: "...if diversity isn't important to you that's fine, that's your prerogative. But I'm still going to call it out when I see it." Jason Manford reported that Omid Djalili had originally been scheduled but was unable to attend. Romesh Ranganathan also reported that he had been asked to take part but was unable. Adefope later made a donation to Action Duchenne.

Mitchell and Webb

Mitchell and Webb are a British comedy double act, composed of David Mitchell (born 14 July 1974) and Robert Webb (born 29 September 1972). They are best known for starring in the Channel 4 sitcom Peep Show and their sketch show That Mitchell and Webb Look. The duo first met at the Footlights in 1993 and collaborated for the 1995 Revue while at Cambridge.

Newman and Baddiel in Pieces

Newman and Baddiel in Pieces is a sketch comedy television show written by and starring comedians Robert Newman and David Baddiel, produced by Harry Thompson, and broadcast on BBC2 from 20 September to 20 December 1993.

A Spin-off from The Mary Whitehouse Experience, the show combined monologues and observational routines from each of the two comedians (often with very dark themes) and character comedy. Its title sequence was an animated version of Munch's painting The Scream (to the tune of "Another Flavour" by The Sundays), with Newman and Baddiel revealed as the artist's friends in the background, standing near a waterfront theatre in which they were appearing. Audience applause between sketches was frequently accompanied by an animated theatre full of applauding The Scream characters.

The series was repeated under the title Newman and Baddiel: Rest in Pieces, with new title animation showing the duo lying in state in an open grave. The new titles were due to the Munch estate still owning copyright on the image of The Scream, as used on the original version.

Terry Crews

Terry Alan Crews (born July 30, 1968) is an American actor, activist, artist, and former American football player. Crews played Julius Rock on the UPN/CW sitcom Everybody Hates Chris and Nick Kingston-Persons in the TBS sitcom Are We There Yet? He previously hosted the game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire and starred in the BET reality series The Family Crews. He appeared in films such as Friday After Next (2002), White Chicks (2004), Idiocracy (2006), and the Expendables series. Since 2013, he has played NYPD Sergeant Terry Jeffords in the sitcom Brooklyn Nine-Nine. He is currently set to host America's Got Talent in 2019, following his involvement in the same role for the program's spin-off series America's Got Talent: The Champions from January 2019.

Crews played as a defensive end and linebacker in the National Football League (NFL) for the Los Angeles Rams, San Diego Chargers, and Washington Redskins, as well as in the World League of American Football with Rhein Fire, and college football at Western Michigan University.

Crews, a public advocate for women's rights and activist against sexism, has shared stories of the abuse his family endured at the hands of his violent father. He was included among the group of people named as Time Magazine's Person of the Year in 2017 for going public with stories of sexual assault.

Todd Durham

Todd Durham is an American filmmaker, comedy writer, and novelist, known as the creator of the Hotel Transylvania film franchise for Columbia Pictures, which he based on his book of the same name. He became the sixth sole-creator of an animated movie franchise that went on to generate over $1 billion from theatrical and ancillary markets after only one sequel. Durham's works, including over forty screenplays and books, frequently combine fantasy storylines with character comedy.

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