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.

Genre Description Notable examples
Alternative comedy Differs from traditional punchline jokes which features many other forms of comedy such as observation, satire, surrealism, slapstick and improvisation Tony Allen, Alexei Sayle, Mark Steel, Dan Harmon, Dave Gorman, Linda Smith, Jeremy Hardy, Ron Sparks, Alan Davies, Ben Elton, Jo Brand, Stewart Lee, Sean Hughes, Rik Mayall, Adrian Edmonson, Malcolm Hardee, Kristen Schaal, Kevin McAleer, Simon Munnery, Arthur Smith, Arnold Brown, Robert Newman, Kenny Sebastian
Anecdotal comedy[2] Named after the word anecdote (which stems from the Greek term meaning “unpublished”); refers to comic personal stories that may be true or partly true but embellished[2] Kevin Hart, Louis CK, Patrice O'Neal, Russell Peters, Aries Spears, Hannibal Buress, Deon Cole, John Mulaney, Bill Burr, Roy Wood, Jr., Dave Chappelle, Cedric The Entertainer, Bernie Mac, Gabriel Iglesias, Alonzo Bodden, D.L. Hughley, Jamie Foxx, Eddie Griffin, Hasan Minhaj, Patton Oswalt, Jim Gaffigan, Tom Segura, Trevor Noah, Daniel Kitson, Chris Rock, Biswa Kalyan Rath,[3] Zakir Khan
Anti-humor A type of indirect humor that involves the joke-teller delivering something which is intentionally not funny, or lacking in intrinsic meaning Andy Kaufman, Norm Macdonald, Ted Chippington, John Thomson, Andy Milonakis, Neil Hamburger, Tim & Eric, Eric Andre, Edward Aczel, Paul Putner, Albert Brooks, Steve Martin, Martin Mull, Bill Bailey, Bo Burnham. TV shows: The Big Bang Theory, Family Guy, The Inbetweeners.
Black comedy or dark comedy Deals with disturbing subjects such as death, drugs, terrorism, rape, and war; can sometimes be related to the horror movie genre Coen brothers, Jim Norton, Lenny Bruce, Bill Hicks, Dave Chappelle, Frankie Boyle, Jimmy Carr, Louis C.K., Denis Leary, Richard Pryor, Ricky Gervais, George Carlin, Chris Rush, Mike Ward, Penn & Teller, Joseph Dale, Seth MacFarlane, Christopher Titus, Sacha Baron Cohen, Trey Parker/Matt Stone, Quentin Tarantino, David Cross, Peter Kay, Anthony Jeselnik, Seth Rogen/Evan Goldberg, Bobcat Goldthwait, Brendon Burns
Blue comedy Typically sexual in nature (risqué) and/or using profane language; sometimes using gender or race based humor. Roy 'Chubby' Brown, Jim Davidson, Frankie Boyle, Eddie Murphy, Bernard Manning, Martin Lawrence, George Lopez, Doug Stanhope, Joe Rogan, Seth MacFarlane, Redd Foxx, Bob Saget, Ron White, Dave Attell, Chris Rock, Sarah Silverman, Chappelle's Show, Jim Jefferies, Lisa Lampanelli, John Valby, Frank Skinner, Jenny Eclair, Robert Schimmel, Derek and Clive, Amy Schumer
Character comedy Derives humor from a persona invented by a performer; often from stereotypes Phyllis Diller, Andy Kaufman, Bob Nelson, Catherine Tate, Paul Eddington, Andrew Dice Clay, Rich Hall, Tim Allen, John Gordon Sinclair, Lenny Henry, Sacha Baron Cohen, Christopher Ryan, Joseph Dale, Steve Guttenberg, Jerry Sadowitz, Steve Coogan, Bip, Jay London, Larry the Cable Guy, Sarah Silverman, Paul Reubens, Rob Brydon, Rowan Atkinson, Peter Helliar, Harry Enfield, Margaret Cho, Little Britain, Stephen Colbert, Al Murray, Paul Whitehouse, Charlie Higson, Kevin Hart, Alex Borstein, Vadivelu, Barry Humphries, Paul O'Grady, Caroline Aherne, Mary Tyler Moore, Kate McKinnon, Mo Collins, Chris Lilley, Michael McDonald (comedian), Kristen Wiig
Cringe comedy A comedy of embarrassment, in which the humor comes from inappropriate actions or words; usually popular in television shows and film, but occasionally in stand-up as well Ricky Gervais, Richard Herring, Rufus Hound, Larry David, Alan Partridge, Bob Saget; TV shows: Curb Your Enthusiasm, Peep Show, The Proposal, The Larry Sanders Show
Deadpan comedy Not strictly a style of comedy, it is telling jokes without a change in facial expression or change of emotion Milton Jones, Jack Dee, Bob Newhart, Jimmy Carr, Steven Wright, Peter Cook, Craig Ferguson, Dylan Moran, Christopher Walken, W. Kamau Bell, Buster Keaton, Bill Murray, Jim Gaffigan, Les Dawson, Mike Birbiglia, Mitch Hedberg, Bruce McCulloch, Demetri Martin, Elliott Goblet, Aubrey Plaza, Zach Galifianakis, Michael Redmond, Judah Friedlander, James Acaster
Heritage comedy A method or genre in which a comedian discuss humorous traits or stereotypes about their own culture or heritage. Richard Pryor, Jeff Foxworthy, George Lopez, Jerrod Guillory, Bill Engvall, Gabriel Iglesias, Jackie Mason, Pat Cooper, Yakov Smirnoff, Henning Wehn
Improvisational comedy Improvisational (sometimes shortened to improv) comics rarely plan out their routines; television show examples: Curb Your Enthusiasm, Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Thank God You're Here Robin Williams, Jonathan Winters, Eddie Izzard, Bob Nelson, Paula Poundstone, Paul Merton, Tony Slattery, Josie Lawrence, Jim Sweeney, Steve Steen, Lily Tomlin, Wayne Brady, Ryan Stiles, Colin Mochrie, Drew Carey, Greg Proops, John Sessions, Neil Mullarkey, Kathy Greenwood, Brad Sherwood, Chip Esten, Jeff Davis, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Jonathan Mangum, Mark Meer, Larry David, David Lawrence, Paul Spence, John Valby, Kaneez Surka
Insult Comedy A form which consists mainly of offensive insults directed at the performer's audience and/or other performers Don Rickles, Andrew Dice Clay, Ricky Gervais, Bob Saget, Frankie Boyle, Jimmy Carr, Jerry Sadowitz, Sam Kinison, Seth MacFarlane, Triumph, the Insult Comic Dog, Roy 'Chubby' Brown, Marcus Valerius Martialis, Jeffrey Ross, Lisa Lampanelli, D.L. Hughley, Greg Giraldo, Goundamani, Kathy Griffin, John Valby, Gilbert Gottfried, Joan Rivers, Jeremy Clarkson
Mockumentary A parody using the conventions of documentary style Films and TV shows: Fubar & Fubar 2, Borat, This is Spinal Tap, The Monkees, The Rutles, Summer Heights High, Electric Apricot: Quest for Festeroo, The Office, Brüno, Parks and Recreation, Modern Family, Come Fly with Me, Angry Boys, The Compleat Al, "Trailer Park Boys" 'The Office
Musical Comedy A form of alternative comedy where humor is mostly derived from music with (or sometimes without) lyrics Bill Bailey, Denis Leary, Tim Minchin, Ninja Sex Party, The Lonely Island, Flight Of The Conchords, Les Luthiers, Mitch Benn, Tenacious D, Spinal Tap, Stephen Lynch, "Weird Al" Yankovic, Joseph Dale, Bob Rivers, Bo Burnham, Wayne Brady, the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, Tom Lehrer, Victor Borge, John Valby, Jasper Carrott, Boothby Graffoe, David O'Doherty, Rachel Bloom, Adam Sandler, Victoria Wood, Allan Sherman.
Observational comedy Pokes fun at everyday life, often by inflating the importance of trivial things or by observing the silliness of something that society accepts as normal George Carlin, Jerry Seinfeld, Louis C.K., Craig Ferguson, Larry David, Mitch Hedberg, Billy Connolly, Michael McIntyre, Russell Howard, Cedric the Entertainer, Steve Harvey, Gabriel Iglesias, W. Kamau Bell, Ray Romano, Chris Rush, Dane Cook, Ricky Gervais, Chris Rock, Jim Gaffigan, Kathy Greenwood, Ellen DeGeneres, Russell Peters, John Mulaney, Peter Kay, Victoria Wood, Sapan Vermacho ramaswamy
One-line joke A joke that is delivered in a single line. A good one-liner is said to be pithy - concise and meaningful Tommy Cooper, Rodney Dangerfield, Ken Dodd, Stewart Francis, Milton Jones, Tim Vine, Henny Youngman, Mitch Hedberg, Jimmy Carr, Steven Wright, Demetri Martin, Anthony Jeselnik, Doug Benson, Jim Gaffigan, Zach Galifianakis, Shappi Khorsandi, Dan Mintz, Groucho Marx, Jay London
Physical comedy Somewhat similar to slapstick, this form uses physical movement and gestures; often influenced by clowning Michael Richards, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Jacques Tati, Jim Carrey, Bob Nelson, Norman Wisdom, Jerry Lewis, Robin Williams, Chevy Chase, John Ritter, Conan O'Brien, Kunal Nayyar, Mr. Bean, Michael Mcintyre, Lee Evans, Bill Irwin, David Shiner, Joseph Dale, Max Wall, Matthew Perry, Brent Butt, Kathy Greenwood, The Three Stooges, Lano & Woodley, Lucille Ball, Chris Farley, Sebastian Maniscalco, The Dangerous Brothers, Danny Kaye
Prop comedy Relies on ridiculous props, casual jackets or everyday objects used in humorous ways Bob Nelson, Carrot Top, Jeff Dunham, Gallagher, Timmy Mallett, The Amazing Johnathan, Jerry Sadowitz, Red Skelton, Tape Face, Howie Mandel, Tommy Cooper, Harpo Marx, Bruce Baum
Shock humour A style of comedy that that uses Shock value to invoke a strong negative emotion as well as a comedic Howard Stern, Eric Andre
Sitcom Scripted dialogue creating a thematic situation; commonly found on television series "The Big Bang Theory", Seinfeld, Fawlty Towers, Black Books, Porridge, Dad's Army, Blackadder, Gavin & Stacey, My Wife and Kids, I Love Lucy, Friends, Corner Gas, That '70s Show, Laff Riot, The Office, The Cosby Show, The Simpsons, Open All Hours, Only Fools and Horses, Dinner Ladies, Modern Family, Melissa & Joey, All in the Family," The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air"
Sketch A shorter version of a sitcom, practised and typically performed live Armstrong and Miller, Jennifer Saunders, Lorne Michaels, Dawn French, Craig Ferguson, Catherine Tate; TV shows: Monty Python, Armstrong and Miller, Saturday Night Live, Chappelle's Show, Firesign Theatre, In Living Color, A Bit of Fry & Laurie, Mad TV, Key & Peele Lenny Henry
Spoof The recreating of a book, film or play for humor; it can be used to make fun of, or ridicule, a certain production Mel Brooks, French and Saunders, Mitchell and Webb, I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue, Peter Serafinowicz, Weird Al Yankovic, Zucker, Abrahams and Zucker; Films and TV shows: Hot Shots, Frankie Boyle's Tramadol Nights, Shriek, Look Around You C. S. Amudhan
Surreal comedy A form of humor based on bizarre juxtapositions, absurd situations, and nonsense logic Spike Milligan, Jay Kogen, Eddie Izzard, J. Stewart Burns, Ross Noble, Bill Bailey, Brent Butt, The Mighty Boosh, Steven Wright, Eric Andre, Trey Parker, Monty Python, Seth MacFarlane, David X. Cohen, Vic and Bob, The Goodies, Jack Handey, Derek Drymon, Wallace Wolodarsky, Harry Hill, The Kids in the Hall, Conan O'Brien, Tim and Eric, Paul Merton, Mitch Hedberg, Firesign Theatre, Shaun Micallef, Emo Philips, Hans Teeuwen, Tony Law, Chic Murray
Topical comedy/Satire Relies on headlining/important news and current affairs; it dates quickly, but is a popular form for late night talk-variety shows George Carlin, Bill Hicks, Dick Gregory, Chris Morris, Dennis Miller, Conan O'Brien, Russell Howard, Craig Ferguson, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Dan Harmon, Andy Hamilton, Dave Allen, Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, John Oliver, Ian Hislop, Brent Butt, Paul Merton, Mort Sahl, Kathy Griffin, Stephen Colbert, Stewart Lee, Mark Thomas, Matt Groening, Rory Bremner, W. Kamau Bell, Ben Elton, David Cross, Lewis Black, Chris Rock, Dave Chappelle, The Chaser, Punt and Dennis, Jon Holmes, Tanmay Bhat, Hari Kondabolu; TV shows: The Daily Show, Have I Got News For You, Mock The Week, The News Quiz, Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons, The Tonight Show, Late Show with David Letterman, Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!, South Park
Wit/Word play More intellectual forms based on clever, often subtle manipulation of language (though puns can be crude and farcical) Groucho Marx, William Shakespeare, Harry Hill, Jay Jason, Oscar Wilde, Woody Allen, George Carlin, Tim Vine, Stephen Fry, Demetri Martin, Bo Burnham, Firesign Theatre, Myq Kaplan, Crazy Mohan, Coen brothers, Ronnie Barker


  1. ^ Cite error: The named reference undefined was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  2. ^ a b "20 Types and Forms of Humor". Retrieved 2016-11-14.
  3. ^ "What are some good stand-up comedians that tell stories from their lives? - Quora". Retrieved 2016-11-14.
Archetypal literary criticism

Archetypal literary criticism is a type of critical theory that interprets a text by focusing on recurring myths and archetypes (from the Greek archē, "beginning", and typos, "imprint") in the narrative, symbols, images, and character types in literary work. As a form of literary criticism, it dates back to 1934 when Maud Bodkin published Archetypal Patterns in Poetry.

Archetypal literary criticism's origins are rooted in two other academic disciplines, social anthropology and psychoanalysis; each contributed to literary criticism in separate ways, with the latter being a sub-branch of critical theory. Archetypal criticism was at its most popular in the 1940s and 1950s, largely due to the work of Canadian literary critic Northrop Frye. Though archetypal literary criticism is no longer widely practiced, nor have there been any major developments in the field, it still has a place in the tradition of literary studies.

Comedy (disambiguation)

Comedy is a genre of dramatic works that have happy endings, in contrast to tragedies that have unhappy endings.

Comedy may also refer to:

Comedy (anime), a short anime film from 2002

Comedy Channel, Channel in MNC Channel

Comedy (drama), in the performing arts

Comedy film

Comedy music

KTV (Indonesia), Previously name KOmedy TV (Comedy TV), Television in Indonesia

Radio comedy

Sketch comedy

Television comedy

The Comedy Network, a Canadian speciality channel

Comedy (Black album)

Comedy (Paul Kelly & The Messengers album)


Stand-up comedy


Comicstaan is an Indian stand-up comedy competition television series created by Only Much Louder for Amazon Video. It is a nine-episode series that includes seven Indian comedians in search of a fresh and talented Indian stand-up comedian. The judges include Biswa Kalyan Rath, Tanmay Bhat, Sapan Verma, Kaneez Surka, Kanan Gill, Kenny Sebastian, and Naveen Richard. The series is hosted by Abish Mathew and Sumukhi Suresh.The season premiere, and three following episodes, on 13 July 2018 and, in its first week, Comicstaan became the most watched show on Amazon Video in India. The grand finale of season 1 was released on August 17 2018 and Nishant Suri, a contestant from Noida, emerged as the winner.On 6 August 2018, Comicstaan was renewed for a second season. Reportedly, all judges but Sapan Verma and Naveen Richard are to return, with the addition of comedian Zakir Khan as a judge and mentor.

Jon Stewart

Jon Stewart (born Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz; November 28, 1962) is an American comedian, writer, producer, director, political commentator, actor, and television host. He hosted The Daily Show, a satirical news program on Comedy Central, from 1999 to 2015.

Stewart started as a stand-up comedian but branched into television as host of Short Attention Span Theater for Comedy Central. He went on to host The Jon Stewart Show and then You Wrote It, You Watch It, both on MTV. Stewart has also had several film roles as an actor but did few cinematic projects after becoming host of The Daily Show in 1999. He was also a writer and co-executive producer of the show. After Stewart joined, The Daily Show steadily gained popularity and critical acclaim, and during his tenure, The Daily Show won 22 Primetime Emmy Awards.

Stewart is known as an outspoken, humorous critic of personality-driven media shows, in particular those of the U.S. media networks such as CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. Critics say Stewart benefits from a double standard: he critiques other news shows from the safe, removed position of his "news satire" desk. Stewart agrees, saying that neither his show nor Comedy Central purport to be anything other than satire and comedy. In spite of its self-professed entertainment mandate, The Daily Show has been nominated for news and journalism awards among its accolades. Stewart hosted the 78th and 80th Academy Awards. He is the co-author of America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction, which was one of the best-selling books in the U.S. in 2004, and Earth (The Book): A Visitor's Guide to the Human Race, released in 2010.

Off-color humor

Off-color humor (US spelling) or off-colour humour (Commonwealth English spelling) (also known as vulgar humor/humour, crude humor/humour, or shock humor/humour) is humor that deals with topics that may be considered to be in poor taste or overly vulgar. Many comedic genres (including jokes, prose, poems, black comedy, blue comedy, insult comedy, cringe comedy and skits) can incorporate vulgar elements.

Most commonly labeled as "off-color" are acts concerned with sex, a particular ethnic group, or gender. Other off-color topics include violence, particularly domestic abuse; excessive swearing or profanity; "toilet humor" / scatological humor; national superiority or inferiority, pedophilic content, and any topics generally considered impolite or indecent. Generally, the point of off-color humor is to induce laughter by evoking a feeling of shock and surprise in the comedian's audience. In this way, off-color humor is related to other forms of postmodern humor, such as the anti-joke.

Philippe Gaulier

Philippe Gaulier (born in Paris, 4 March 1943) is a French master clown, pedagogue, and professor of theatre. He is the founder of École Philippe Gaulier, a prestigious French theatre school in Étampes, outside Paris. He studied under Jacques Lecoq in the mid-1960s and was an instructor at L'École Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq in the late 1970s. As well as performing as a clown, he is also a playwright and director. He has published The Tormentor (Le Gégèneur), a book discussing his thoughts on the theatre and containing exercises designed to develop an actor's skill.

Gaulier is known for performing both clown and bouffon comic genres and is thought by some to be the world's leading authority on the "Bouffon", a comic genre he holds as a sort of inverted Clown, where a balance is struck between grotesqueness and charm.


Starz (stylized as STARZ; pronounced "stars") is an American premium cable and satellite television network which serves as Starz Inc.'s flagship service. Starz's programming features theatrically released motion pictures and first-run original television series.

The headquarters of Starz, and its sister networks Starz Encore and MoviePlex, are located at the Meridian International Business Center complex in Englewood, Colorado.

As of January 2016, Starz is available to 31 million households in the United States.

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