comedy The Most Original Comedians  

Lisa Waugh
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List Rules Comedians who were actually groundbreaking and original - not derivative.

Picking the top original comedians may start a bar fight but it's time to weigh in. What is the criteria for choosing some of the top groundbreaking comedians? This list looks at comedians who were the first of their kind, who set trends, established new genres, and broke the comedy mold to pieces. Those who killed while they made some razor sharp points about the state of things. Who had their own style that could not be replicated, try as many might.

Ranked here are original comics who broke down boundaries and changed American pop culture. Which top original comedians shocked the senses, created new comedic wrinkles, and challenged America to challenge itself?

Original comics with an original voice soon get folded into the next generation’s comedy. Milton Berle and Jack Benny were groundbreaking comedians of their time. Bill Hicks called the world out on its very existence. Johnny Carson created late night talk.

Groundbreaking comedians have changed public opinion and influenced politics. Jon Stewart has taken down many an arrogant journalist and political figure by using comedy, logic, and masterful mock news. Tina Fey has done the same. Lenny Bruce and George Carlin questioned every aspect of government and society and pushed limits. Monty Python surrealistically picked apart the British Empire. Amy Schumer brought a brash realism, a fresh voice for women, and taught us all where fudge is made. Dave Chappelle and Richard Pryor will always be considered two of the greats, nearly impossible to conquer.

Then there are those original comedy legends who have fallen from grace. Are they still groundbreaking comedians in light of their misdeeds and scandal? Many think so. Others see original comics like Bill Cosby as icons who did a lot for America’s perception of black families. But in the face of over 35 accusers of drugging and rape, where does he fall in comedy history? How about Woody Allen, who has faced his own public scandals?

Who are your favorite original comics? Do you swing old school or new? Do you mix your original comedy tastes and make choices based on your mood? Upvote your favorite groundbreaking comedians and tell us who should rule the original comics list. Don’t see your favorite original comedy king or queen here? Add it and get the last laugh. We’ll forgive you if you add Dane Cook.
list ordered by

1
840 138
Richard Pryor is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Richard Pryor Died at 65 (1940-2005)

Actors Who Died In The Middle Of Filming Something The Best Female Stand Up Comedians of the 2010s

2
772 128
George Carlin is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Original Comedians
George Carlin Died at 71 (1937-2008)

3
787 166
Robin Williams is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Robin Williams Died at 63 (1951-2014)

4
605 160
Eddie Murphy is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Eddie Murphy age 56

5
523 153
Steve Martin is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Steve Martin age 71

6
500 139
Mel Brooks is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Mel Brooks age 90

7
559 182
Dave Chappelle is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Original Comedians

8
539 157
Bill Murray is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Bill Murray age 66

9
459 164
Lucille Ball is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Lucille Ball Died at 78 (1911-1989)

10
442 158
Monty Python is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Monty Python

11
412 149
Carol Burnett is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Carol Burnett age 83

12
420 143
John Belushi is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Original Comedians
John Belushi Died at 33 (1949-1982)

13
335 140
Charlie Chaplin is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Charlie Chaplin Died at 88 (1889-1977)

14
396 233
Chris Rock is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Chris Rock age 52

15
266 127
Gilda Radner is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Gilda Radner Died at 43 (1946-1989)

Comedians Who Have Won Grammy Awards The Best TV Shows Streaming On Hulu

16
296 130
Don Rickles is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Don Rickles age 90

17
203 87
Chris Farley is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Original Comedians
little-faye added Chris Farley Died at 33 (1964-1997)

18
182 59
John Candy is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Original Comedians
John Candy Died at 44 (1950-1994)

19
295 182
Tina Fey is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Tina Fey age 46

20
270 129
Johnny Carson is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Johnny Carson Died at 80 (1925-2005)

21
272 128
Phil Hartman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Phil Hartman Died at 50 (1948-1998)

22
259 142
Jonathan Winters is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Jonathan Winters Died at 88 (1925-2013)

23
183 97
Marty Feldman is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Marty Feldman Died at 48 (1934-1982)

24
250 152
Andy Kaufman is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Andy Kaufman Died at 35 (1949-1984)

25
243 148
Rowan Atkinson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Original Comedians

26
273 152
Sam Kinison is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Sam Kinison Died at 39 (1953-1992)

27
388 241
Jim Carrey is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Jim Carrey age 55

28
286 193
Louis C.K. is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Louis C.K. age 49

29
235 131
Bob Newhart is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Bob Newhart age 87

Rappers Who Struggle with Mental Illness The 17 Greatest Simpsons Religion Jokes

30
211 123
The Marx Bros. is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Most Original Comedians
The Marx Bros.

31
262 192
Jerry Seinfeld is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Most Original Comedians

32
259 200
Jon Stewart is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Jon Stewart age 54

33
231 145
Mitch Hedberg is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Mitch Hedberg Died at 37 (1968-2005)

34
80 41
Steven Wright is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Steven Wright age 61

35
117 92
Lily Tomlin is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Most Original Comedians
tina-naylor-riston added Lily Tomlin age 77

36
168 124
Phyllis Diller is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Phyllis Diller Died at 95 (1917-2012)

37
103 63
Chevy Chase is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Original Comedians
djoka-dik added Chevy Chase age 73

38
173 135
Lewis Black is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Most Original Comedians
bryan-w-thompson added Lewis Black age 68

39
184 151
Elaine May is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Elaine May age 84

40
160 126
Milton Berle is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Milton Berle Died at 94 (1908-2002)

41
86 53
Peter Sellers is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Most Original Comedians
djoka-dik added Peter Sellers Died at 55 (1925-1980)

42
144 134
Lenny Bruce is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Lenny Bruce Died at 41 (1925-1966)

43
29 5
Bernie Mac is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Johnny B Goode added Bernie Mac Died at 51 (1957-2008)

The Coolest Actors Ever The Best American Actors Working Today

44
189 167
Roseanne Barr is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Roseanne Barr age 64

45
188 169
Joan Rivers is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Joan Rivers Died at 81 (1933-2014)

46
31 9
Madeline Kahn is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Jim_In_Texas added Madeline Kahn Died at 57 (1942-1999)

47
68 48
Bill Burr is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Most Original Comedians
OldSchooler added Bill Burr age 48

48
63 55
Melissa McCarthy is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Most Original Comedians
StephenAlgie added Melissa McCarthy age 46

49
143 175
Woody Allen is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Woody Allen age 81

50
189 185
Bill Cosby is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Most Original Comedians
Bill Cosby age 79