Top 10 British Stand-up Comedians

Top 10 British Stand-up Comedians


Jokes, gags, and bossing hecklers. Welcome to WatchMojo UK, and today we’ll
be counting down our picks for the Top 10 British Stand-up comedians. For this list, we’re rolling with the greatest
UK stand-up acts of all time. We’ve focussed our rank on classic joke
and punchline performers, as well as comics renowned for their storytelling. All round entertainers and performance artists,
including the likes of the brilliant Bill Bailey, aren’t included today. For a specialised look at the world’s Top
10 Female Stand-ups, be sure to check out our sister channel, MsMojo. Since starting up in the mid 2000s, Michael
McIntyre has become one of Britain’s most popular comedians. A bright and energetic style shapes his routines,
earning him solid rep as a hilarious host. A presenter for several stand up programs
and a one-time judge on “Britain’s Got Talent”, “Michael McIntyre’s Big Show”
is arguably his most successful vehicle, bagging him a BAFTA in 2017. While today’s audience probably knows him
best for the slightly annoying Premier Inn ads, Lenny Henry’s comedy career dates back
to the ‘70s. A perennial favourite, thanks to his broad
and charming style and his lead role with Comic Relief, he has stayed at the top of
his game for decades. Knighted for his services to drama and charity
in the Queen’s 2015 Birthday Honours, this chap’s a national treasure. A retired stand-up as of 2014, Lee Evans sure
deserves a rest. He leaves behind a twenty-year legacy, including
famously sweat-drenched routines packed with energy. At his prime he was one of the best-selling
comedians in the country, as well as an occasional dabbler with Hollywood. He called time on his career to focus on his family, but didn’t he have a blast! Famous for his brazen approach and unique
wardrobe choices, Eddie Izzard embraces the odder side of life. His often surreal musings can tackle anything
from serious societal topics to plain bizarre run-throughs of everyday life on the Death
Star. He’s also noted for his film and TV work,
his political influence and for undertaking some truly marathon challenges for charity. But Izzard’s stand up shows boast some of
his best and boldest material. Unapologetic. Controversial. But ever-popular. Frankie Boyle made a name for himself by angrily ranting
his way through “Mock the Week”. Never one to shy away from big issues, his
views on the likes of Brexit and the 2016 US election also led to a hosting gig on “Frankie
Boyle’s New World Order”. Setting out to ruthlessly tackle current affairs,
his stand-up shows always promise the same degree of savage pessimism. A
stark contrast from Bolton’s finest, Peter Kay proves that not all jokes need a biting
satirical agenda, or a barrage of bad language. Kay rewrote the record books in 2011 by staging
the most successful stand-up comedy tour of all time, and he has been a staple on British
TV since the ‘90s. From dad dancing to dunking a biscuit, he
turns simple things into ever-quotable yarns, finding the funny side of everyday life. Right down to his iconic fez, Tommy Cooper
is a comic legend. With routines often built on “failed”
magic tricks, he’s still quoted as a leading inspiration for many of today’s comedians. Of course, Cooper tragically died as he lived,
on stage while entertaining a rapturous audience. But, his lumbering manner and ‘just like that’ delivery drives a
lasting legacy, and the ‘cheeky chappy’ persona still holds up today. Thank you very much. Another who’s known for film and TV as well
as stand-up, Billy Connolly worked on the Glasgow shipyards before becoming a folk singer,
and a comedian. His frank, brash and ballsy shows soon saw
him become an icon in Scotland, and an international hit. Affectionately known as the Big Yin, he plays
the belligerent Scot to a tee and became well known for his constant touring in the ‘90s. He’s a man of the people, and a riotous
one-off. If you’re easily offended, look away now. He’s an actor, a writer, a director, he’s
hosted the Golden Globes, but for pure Ricky Gervais, you have to see his stand up. His to the bone gags do tend to divide opinion,
but the guy was arguably the UK’s most influential comedian throughout the 2000s. Forever pushing boundaries for what can and
can’t be said, “Animals” and “Politics” are probably his most famous tours, taken
shortly after the success of “The Office”. Before we reveal our number one pick, here
are a few honourable mentions: His laugh is unmistakable. His deadpan delivery is always on point. His treatment of hecklers is brutal. Jab at Jimmy’s questionable tax history
all you like; he’s always ready with a witty reply. Jimmy Carr has been a face of British comedy
for years, hosting or appearing on a range of shows. But forget the studio, give this guy a stage
and he will invariably own it. To quote his 2008 tour, he’s a Joke Technician,
and nobody does it better.

89 thoughts on “Top 10 British Stand-up Comedians

  1. Billy connolly is no 1 no mention of Sean lock either if world comedians bill hicks Richard Pryor Robin Williams Chris rock etc etc

  2. Number 1 Jimmy Carr, are you absolutley taking the piss. Who the fuck decided that shovel faced twat should tower the other 9!?

  3. No British person thinks Lenny Henry is in the top 100 of stand up comedians. Jack Dee, Les Dawson, Jasper Carrot, Dave Allen, Bob Monkhouse…

  4. Jimmy Carr No 1? That may come as something of a surprise to his scriptwriters, Frankie Boyle and Sean Lock. Sir Lenworth, eh? Having seen him do a 45 minute set without gaining a single titter, his ability as a raconteur, let alone a comedian, has a huge question mark against it. Wretchmongo does it again

  5. Billy Connolly
    Daniel Kitson
    Frankie Boyle
    Stewart Lee
    Kevin Bridges
    Ken Dodd
    Chic Murray
    Johnny Vegas
    Jerry Sadowitz
    Ted Chippington

  6. Sean lock should be on this list. Jimmy Carr shouldn’t be on this list. Eddie Izzard and Peter Kay should be much higher. Love Lenny Henry but he shouldn’t be in top 10 imo.

  7. Um.. not one woman? Miranda Hart? Jo Brand? Sarah Millican? There are so many, like Aisling Bea, Ellie Taylor, Sarah Pascoe… (also, Jack Whitehall's stand up is hysterical, as is Joe Lycett's)

  8. Billy is number 1 and if your even going to have Ricky garvais as top 100 you have to add Karl Pilkington in there as half of ricks jokes are stolen from him. As for Jimmy car….. wtf great host for tv shows but come on

  9. YES! Jimmy Carr is the best and the only comedian that has ever made me cry with laughter, love him!

  10. You should do a list of another Top 10 British Stand-ups, because there are way more that could easily make the list – no Jasper Carrot, Greg Davies, Russell Howard, Joe Lycett, Bill Bailey, Russell Kane, Newman & Baddiel, Stewart Lee, Richard Herring, Alan Carr, Paul Foot, Milton Jones, Ross Noble, Jo Brand, Sarah Millican, Al Murray, Jack Dee etc, etc 🙂

  11. Ricky Gervais would be my number one, Mcintyre wouldn't even make my top 100 but where is The legendary Ken Dodd?

  12. Hey everyone check out the Tommy Cooper death on youtube. He drops dead on stage and the whole audience laughs. It's hysterical 😀

  13. i would have put Russell Howard and Jack Whitehall on the list. i hate Jimmy Carr's laugh–freaking annoying!

  14. Jimmy Carr is not in the top 15. I do find him funny but the fact he’s above Billy Connolly who is one of the funniest of all time (top 3 probably) and Tommy Cooper is ridiculous. Lee Mack is probably my favourite current comedian.

  15. This video is rubbish personal bias opinion Lee Evans is No.1 fact no one fills as many seat as him he will pack 90 thousand stadium arena in 5 mins of ticket sale goes live

  16. Any top 10 without Mike Reid, Chubby Brown, Jim Davidson, Jethro, Jack Dee, Ronnie Barker, Jimmy Jones and Mick Miller in can't be a UK top 10

  17. Billy Connolly not at number 1 outrageous other than the legend that is Tommy Cooper every other comedian on this list are the bastard children of Billy Connolly

  18. I think Jimmy Carr is actually a proper comedian. He literally write jokes I mean most comedians tell stories or observations.

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