The only American magazine that loves making lists more than the exciteable British press is Entertainment Weekly. I’m gonna spotlight some of the choices I agree with, but refrain from suggesting the ten or fifteen more deserving candidates that come to my mind when someone says “America’s funniest people.” Actually, scratch that … the phrase makes me think of Dave Coulier. Everything makes me think of Dave Coulier. Damn you Dave Coulier!

So why not make my own list? Because whenever EW puts out a list — in recent months: “Top 50 Cult Movies,” “Top 50 Tearjerkers,” “More Top Cult Movies We Left Off The First List” — readers respond with the most patheticly obsessive (i.e. unintentionally hilarious) letters to the editor.

It will be more entertaining if we wait two weeks and marvel at the unnecessarily vitriolic reader response EW is prone to printing on page six.

1. Chris Rock
Also EW’s cover boy this week. Here’s an excerpt from Josh Wolk’s profile:

Four days after the Indianapolis gig, Rock is in Aspen, Colo., for HBO’s U.S. Comedy Arts Festival, where he’ll be on a panel about Pootie Tang, a film based on a character from The Chris Rock Show, which has evolved from laughable bomb to cult favorite. “This is what my mother would call ’the real white people,’” he says, walking the lily white (and we’re not just talking snow) streets of Aspen. “This is not the white janitor or the white cop. The guy in every Richard Pryor joke is here, the parody of the rich.” It reminds Rock of why he loved Lost In Translation which metaphorically captured what it’s like to be rich and black. “You’re on vacation, it’s gonna be just a lot of places,” says Rock. “You’re gonna live where you’re one of the only black people. You’re gonna shop in places where you’re one of the only black people.”

2. Jon Stewart and the ’Daily Show’ team
Can’t argue with this. I am a big fan of everyone at TDS. Even Samantha Bee (ever since her “gay penguin marriage” piece last week). I bought a cool Daily Show t-shirt for $1 at a flea market. My girlfriend stole it.

3. Will Ferrell
Must-read: Will’s Class Day speech at Harvard Commencement, 6/5/03

4. Larry David
I wrote about this dude last week.

5. Dave Chappelle
Hustler Of Culture tells me I need to Tivo every episode. I like what I’ve seen so far.

6. Ellen DeGeneres
7. Bill Murray
8. Amy and David Sedaris
9. Robert Smigel
If you don’t agree with this one, watch Smigel (as Triumph The Insult Comic Dog) attack nerds at the Star Wars: Attack Of The Clones premiere, and you will change your mind.
Windows | Real

10. Jim Carrey
11. David Letterman
12. Aaron McGruder
13. Jack Black
14. Wanda Sykes
15. Augusten Burroughs
16. Scott Armstrong
17. Conan O’Brien
18. Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson
19. Bernice Mac
20. Maya Rudolph
21. Demetri Martin
I saw his palindromes bit at Eating It a few years ago. This guy is a riot.

22. Catherine O’Hara
23. Ego Trip
24. Sarah Silverman
Recomended viewing: Sarah Silverman visits the Gay Rodeo. Also, can we agree that Jessi Klein is the new Sarah Silverman? I promise to put at least one Jessi clip here by the end of the week.

25. Dave Attell
25.5. Kelly Ripa
EW winkingly includes a #101.5 or a #25.5 for every list. This time, Ripa gets the nod for a hilarious SNL commercial parody that had her shilling for Tressant Supreme, a shampoo fortified with cocaine. TVTome claims the film was written by Slovin And Allen. I don’t know if this is true.

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If you’re a regular reader (and whiner about) Entertainment Weekly (I am, but I tell myself it’s for my job) I highly recommend the Reviewing Entertainment Weekly Blog for some very funny, well-informed constructive criticism…

Figuring Out Jessica Shaw is sleeping with all of them Wondering which editor Jessica Shaw is sleeping with The Shaw Report

Comments (47)
  1. why on earth would amy and david sedaris be together as number 8- as funny as they both are, they are distinctly unique and i have never heard them do projects together….

  2. Kelly Ripa also showed up in last night’s SNL in the final “Bangkok” commercial parody of the “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” bits. Pants-peeingly funny.

  3. Typo Negative  |   Posted on Mar 15th, 2004 0

    Actually, Ellogoods, Amy and David Sedaris have done countless projects together?they first gained fame onstage in New York billing themselves as “The Talent Family.” I think there’s plenty of justification for giving them a joint entry.

  4. My five big gripes about that list:

    1) Conan should be top five, or at least top ten.

    2) Maya Rudolph shouldn’t be on the list. She’s one of the weakest links of the current SNL cast. It should’ve been Fey or Forte.

    3) Ugh, sorry, I don’t think Sarah Silverman is very funny. She’s a total hack, very one note. There’s nothing but petty anger to her material – she’s lacking in substance, grace, and wit. She has moments here and there, but she’s a marginal talent at best.

    4) Aaron McGruder? Come the fuck on. That guy is one of the LEAST funny guys in America!

    5) Where the hell is the cast of Arrested Development, the best sitcom in the fucking HISTORY of sitcoms?

  5. Let me get this correct…you’re hating on Maya Rudolph? I never really knew you, did I?

  6. Rudolph and Poehlert are the only reasons to watch the show now. I don’t get Will Forte at all.

  7. Maya Rudolph is very funny. I don’t see why David Letterman is up on there. Paul Shaffer is funnier than his ass.

    They should have had Jimmy Kimmel up there.

  8. Hannah  |   Posted on Mar 22nd, 2004 0

    I didn’t know Demetri Martin was well enough known to be on EW’s Top 25. Fantabulous for him. He’s hysterical and a total sweetheart.

  9. Modulok  |   Posted on Mar 23rd, 2004 0

    Where is Dane Cook? Where is Dane Cook? My one and only question. Where is Dane Cook? Will Ferrell, Conan O’Brien, Jon Stewart and DANE COOK!

  10. Aidan  |   Posted on Apr 6th, 2004 0

    Why is Letterman funnier than conan?????????????

  11. Ricky  |   Posted on Apr 9th, 2004 0

    what’s stupid about this list is that all these people on the list are people in the spotlight. meaning, they appear on television or in movies. for all we know, the funniest person in america could be some guy working in a gas station. maybe those idiots at entertainment weekly should change the name of their list to “funniest people in american television”. if there was somehow a way to list the funniest people in america, period, then the top 25 that entertainment weekly listed probably wouldn’t be close to cracking the list.

    but still, this list sucks no matter how you look at it. robert smigel? this guy’s creation, triumph the insult comic dog, is a ripoff of a trash talking sock puppet created by a canadian comic called ed the sock.

    also, sarah silverman? the same person who made that lame joke about Chinese people and jury duty? people who are actually on jury duty use some variation of that excuse all the time. very derivitive. silverman is neither funny or original.

  12. Gloria  |   Posted on Apr 15th, 2004 0

    Maya Rudolph is the reason I watch SNL. She is hilarious and one of the best impersonators in the business. I do think Dave Chappelle should be higher on the list. Have you seen his show?!

  13. Shoe Shine  |   Posted on Apr 15th, 2004 0

    CONAN SHOULD BE 3!!!!!! Maya Rudolph is so not funny its kinda sad. Seriously, how bout Cosby? I kid cause the guys like 70 but hes still better then some of these clowns. Heres mine dudes
    1. Chris Rock + Conan O’Brien
    2. John Stewart
    3. Dave Chapelle
    4. Will Ferrell
    5. Dane Cook
    6. Jim Carey
    7. Jack Black

    • Uh no.

      Chris rock – not funny, untalented and stupid.
      Conan Obrien – complete moron who has never said one funny thing in hist life. He should be shot.
      John Stewart – Boring and unfunny. Waste of TV space.

      These 3 should not be on any list with the word funny in it. If you like them then you have a very low IQ and are most likely mentally disabled.

  14. Nicole  |   Posted on Apr 15th, 2004 0

    I can’t believe you guys are fighting already about who’s funnier than who. Its EWs writer’s opinions. Who the hell cares if you disagree or not? Its great that you want to add your thoughts, but some people find some comedians funny, other people don’t find them funny, why argue about it? Its all relative anyway.

  15. Felicia  |   Posted on Apr 15th, 2004 0

    CONAN should be way higher on the list, at least in the top 10. He definately should be above Letterman (better than having Leno up there though). I am happy for Jon Stewart, he deserves it (did you see Oprah!) Ps. Hey, where’s Seth Myers on this list?!

  16. Dawn  |   Posted on Apr 15th, 2004 0

    Why wasn’t Chris Tucker and Cedric the Entertainer on the list? Both of them are really funny. Why is Bernie Mac so far down on the list too? There are really a lot of Comedians that are on T.V. that should have made the list but I guess it depends on the person who writes it.

  17. Micheal  |   Posted on Apr 15th, 2004 0

    You have to be kidding me. I dont know which idots were making this list but they have seemed to have overlooked the man to created most of the comedic style today and i’m talking about JERRY SEINFELD!!! and the others… tim allen, george lopez. But in reality this is all opion based so ppl are going to disagree with the list. dave attel should be up in the top five also. peace, keep hope alive!!!

  18. Dave  |   Posted on Apr 15th, 2004 0

    Chris ROck is #1 by far. Conan is not as funny as some people like Chris Rock, or Will Ferrell, but shoulda still made the top 10. Kelly Rippa and Maya Rudolph are both pretty funny, but seriously is not as funny as Adam Sandler, Rob Schnieder, Kevin Nielin, David Spade or even some one like Jay Leno. This should be the top 10
    1. Chris Rock
    2. Jon Stewart
    3. Jim Carey
    4. Robert Smigel
    5. Dave Chappelle
    6. Will Ferrell
    7. Ellen DeGeneres
    8. Jack Black
    9. Larry David
    10. Conan O’brien

  19. mike  |   Posted on Apr 16th, 2004 0

    firstly,that list is soooo bad.what about mike myers and adam sandler?i want to see someone watch conan obrian do his little jokes and you not laugh.the guy is the most underated comedian in america.
    1)jim carrey
    2)chris rock
    3)ben stiller
    4)conan obrian
    5)dave chappelle
    6)jack black
    7)eddie murphy
    8)will farrel
    9)owen wilson
    10)ellen degeneras

    also aries spears from mad tv is hilarious.mad tv is by far funnier than saturday night live.

  20. Melissa  |   Posted on Apr 16th, 2004 0

    You guys jim carrey is Candian and on the funiest American list? Anyways here’s my list.
    1.Chris Rock
    2.Jon Stewart
    3.Conan O’Brien
    4.Jerry Sienfeld
    5.Bernie Mac
    6.Adam Sandler
    7.Seth Myers (extremely under-appreciated on SNL)
    8.Ben Stiller
    9.Bill Murry
    10.Jack Black

  21. Aliyah  |   Posted on Apr 16th, 2004 0

    Conan O’Brien Rocks!!!! String dance is so LOL !!!! Conan #1 all da Way!! GO CONAN AND THE LEAFS GO LOL IM CRACKING MASELF up LOL CONAN!!!!!!

  22. Felicia  |   Posted on Apr 16th, 2004 0

    Heres my most funniest canadian list (or should I say continent list).
    1.Mike Myers
    2.Jim Carrey
    3.Eugene Levy
    4.Martin Short
    5.Rick Mercer
    6.Dan Aykroyd
    7.Tom Green
    8.Matthew Perry
    9.Norm MacDonald
    10.Colin Mochrie
    11.Dave Thomas
    and way more…

  23. the real top 10

    1. chris rock
    2. cedric the entertainer
    3. larry david
    4. jim carrey
    5. david chappelle
    6. who ever writes south park
    7. ben stiller
    8. adam sandler
    9. ellen degeneras
    10.will farrel

  24. Cynthia Marquez  |   Posted on Apr 27th, 2004 0

    You forgot the Latin comedians like George Lopez,Cheech Marin and Pedro Rodriguez, just to name some of the funniest people in America.

  25. Cynthia Marquez  |   Posted on Apr 27th, 2004 0

    You forgot the Latin comedians like George Lopez,Cheech Marin and Pedro Rodriguez, just to name some of the funniest people in America.

  26. molly jane  |   Posted on Apr 29th, 2004 0

    I was also kind of thrown off by some of the list’s choices. For me, it would probably be:

    1. The cast of Arrested Development (especially GOB, Buster, Tobias, and George Michael)
    2. The Upright Citizens’ Brigade: Matt Besser, Amy Poehler, Ian Roberts, Matt Walsh (finally released on DVD and getting episodes re-aired)
    3. Jon Stewart
    4. Conan O’Brien
    5. Stella: Michael Ian Black, Mike Showalter, David Wain
    6. Stephen Colbert
    7. David Sedaris
    8. Demetri Martin
    9. Seth Meyers (agree with Melissa – really great doing live improv, too)
    10. Kevin McDonald of Kids in the Hall – showing up in cameos across TV this season, definately hysterical on infinite levels

    Also up there would be Amy Sedaris and Sarah Silverman, if there needed to be a higher female quotient. The finale of Curb Your Enthusiasm was just way too self-indulgent to put Larry David up there to me.

  27. Snewp Dawg  |   Posted on Sep 15th, 2004 0

    This list totally sucks.First of all,Dave Attell should not be 25,he should be at the lowest #11.Dave Chappelle should be #2,but this list is missing someone.Someone who is better than every other comic on this list combined,which is saying something.So I want to ask Entertainment Weekly 1 Question:Why isn’t George Carlin on the List?????????????????????????????????

  28. Howard Stern

  29. priya  |   Posted on Sep 26th, 2004 0

    jim carrey should be on no.1 position. & rest of the list if fine

  30. jake  |   Posted on Oct 23rd, 2004 0

    1. Dana Carvey
    2. Mike Myers
    3. Conan O’Brian
    4. Martin Short
    5. Chris Rock
    6. Robin Williams
    7. Jay Leno
    8. Dan Ackroyd
    9. Seth Meyers
    10. Billy Connoly

  31. where the fuck is david cross??? what a bullshit list!

  32. D.J.  |   Posted on Dec 4th, 2004 0

    People who belong on the list over (no particular order):

    1. Jerry Seinfeld (thank god Larry David got the credit he deserved)
    2. Tim Allen
    3. Tom Green
    4. Michael Richards (well as the Cosmo Kramer character)
    5. Trey Parker & Matt Stone
    6. Mike Judge
    7. Johnny Knoxville
    8. Emo Phillips

  33. Fauxnim  |   Posted on Mar 14th, 2005 0

    Where’s Denis Leary? Wimps

  34. Ali  |   Posted on May 21st, 2005 0

    no this is the best list of the top 10 funniest people:

    1: Conan O’brien
    2: Dave Chappelle
    3: Will Smith
    4: Eddie Griffin
    5: Chris Rock
    6: Will Ferrell
    7: Robin Williams
    8: Matthew Perry
    9: Jerry Seinfeld
    10:Vince Vaughn

  35. Yilu  |   Posted on Nov 22nd, 2007 0

    Well from d list we can see dat a lotta people love chris rock cuz d truth is dat nigga is funni……

  36. mab  |   Posted on Dec 11th, 2007 0

    uhh it should be 1)Jim Gaffigan 2)demitri martin 3)jerry seinfeld…. the rest of those guys suck (sara silverman not evan funny)

  37. david towner  |   Posted on May 21st, 2008 0

    give me a break! The top three arent even on the list


  38. david towner  |   Posted on May 21st, 2008 0

    give me a break! The top three arent even on the list


  39. Paul Sonski  |   Posted on May 21st, 2008 0

    Of course…..5 hours a day for 30 years and highly sucessfll!……but…….. ET hates Howard because of stupid personal reasons.

  40. Pau  |   Posted on May 21st, 2008 0

    Of course…..5 hours a day for 30 years and highly sucessfll!……but…….. ET hates Howard because of stupid personal reasons.

  41. shani  |   Posted on May 21st, 2008 0

    Where’s Seth MacFarlane?!

  42. okay why is Kelly Ripa in there?
    and why isn’t Adam Sandler?
    he should be #1 and Will Ferrell should be 2
    Jim Carey should be 3

  43. Gwen  |   Posted on Feb 19th, 2009 0

    I totally agree with Matthew about Maya Rudolph. I used to find her quite funny, especially her Donatella Versace impersonation. But by the end of her run on SNL, she was unbearable. She did EVERY character the same, somewhere between her Donatella and Oprah impersonations (her Oprah is awful, btw… MadTV does her so much better). For every impression, she does that booming voice with a strange mixed accent, and overacted. Managed to make her characters both bland and over-the-top. Just terrible. Poehler and Wiig put her to shame.

  44. Chris  |   Posted on Jul 10th, 2009 0

    Come on Where is chris farley?

  45. Thomas Wedtle  |   Posted on Jan 20th, 2010 0

    Dave Attell schould be way up there. Period!
    And this is commin from a scandinavian. You know, Europe. Where the polar bears live..

  46. I say Dane Cook should be on here. I just noticed how wierd of his last name is. One reason he should be on here!

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