All Shows Are On Hold Till We Open Our New Space, Stay Tuned…
At All Out Comedy Theater, Improv is our passion, and Community is our mantra.
We're a welcoming stage for veteran improvisors and an inviting theater for people from all walks of life. Our classes are inclusive, our shows are engaging, and our cast are talented, approachable storytellers who are sure to make you laugh.
As we were forced to leave our old space due to covid-19, we will update our address once we secure a new location. For now all classes will take place at PianoFight.
Whether you're a beginner or a savant, we offer regular classes to expand your improv vocabulary, give you performance tips, and learn skills that will last a lifetime.
All Rentals are on pause till we find a new location.
Things get bonkers in Yorgos Lanthimos's latest circus of deadpan. You have Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz as 18th-century courtiers sparring for the affections of the queen, played by Olivia Colman. And then you have pineapple eating, duck racing, war, rabbits, and honestly, you have to see it to appreciate it. Get tickets
Writer/director Tamara Jenkins has managed to carve out an entirely new subgenre of comedy with her body of work: sad-funny. Jenkins takes life's messiness and turns it into comedic gold, with her latest starring Kathryn Hahn and Paul Giamatti as a couple trying to conceive but can't. Watch on Netflix
Sweeter than marmalade, Paul King's second adventure featuring the Browns and their bear in a toggle coat will win you over with its British charm and humor. This go-round, you get to tag along with Paddington as he searches for the perfect gift for his Aunt Lucy. Spoiler alert: The cutest prison sentence you ever did see is in store. Watch Now
4All About Nina
Though it feels like few people have actually seen it, this hidden gem is proof that Mary Elizabeth Winstead is worthy of sell-out crowds. As Nina, a stand-up comedian addicted to bad choices, she's hilarious, heartfelt, and honest. Do yourself a favor and hunt it down. Buy the DVD
Jonah Hill takes the wheel for the first time to direct a nostalgic story about a kid who finds acceptance with a group of Los Angeles skater boys. Though technically a comedy that drops the occasional stoner joke, this isn’t anything like Hill’s past work like Superbad. It’s just super good. Pre-Order
Adam McKay's latest political comedy starring an absolutely transformed Christian Bale as former Vice President Dick Cheney attempts to reveal what was really going on behind Cheney's cold-stone expression. And it's not just Bale who immersed himself in his role: Amy Adams as Lynne Cheney, Sam Rockwell as President Bush, and Steve Carell as Donald Rumsfeld all give refined performances. Get Tickets
7Sorry to Bother You
The answer to superhero-movie fatigue? This berserk sci-fi debut from rapper Boots Riley. To sum it up is impossible, but here goes: This satirical comedy with a social conscience stars Lakeith Stanfield as a dimension-hopping telemarketer who hits the jackpot. You simply must see it for yourself. Watch Now
Middle school is the worst. It’s the purgatory stuck in between having no worries as a kid and having freedom in high school. For Kayla, the shy and quiet protag you’ll want to give a huge bear hug, it’s also the most awkward time of her life. Get ready to feel all the feels. Watch Now
One black cop, one white cop, one mission: infiltrate the Ku Klux Klan. Spike Lee’s latest joint adds humor and flourish to the exploits that belong to real-life police officer Ron Stallworth (John David Washington). It’s not to be missed. Watch Now
If ever there were a trio we’d want to reunite, it’s Jason Reitman, Diablo Cody, and Charlize Theron. With Tully, the dream team is following up their biting Young Adult with another dark comedy set in the ‘burbs. Just know there’s a newborn, a nanny, and a lotta soul searching. Watch now
Whatever Patricia Clarkson’s dishing, we’re devouring. Here, she joins Kristin Scott Thomas, Emily Mortimer, Cillian Murphy, and others for a dinner party from hell in Sally Potter’s first film since Ginger & Rosa. Put us down plus one. Watch now
12Can You Ever Forgive Me?
On first glance, this “true story” looks like a companion piece to the True Story about Finkel and Longo that came out in 2015. However, this humorous biography about Lea Israel starring Melissa McCarthy is all its own. The best part? It’s directed by The Diary of a Teenage Girl’s Marielle Heller. Get Tickets
There are plenty of box-office busters that deserve your attention, but don’t let this hidden indie gem sneak by you. Carlos Lopez Estrada directs a screenplay that tackles race relations in Oakland written by the film’s lead actors, Daveed Diggs and Rafael Casal. Though it’s a bit messy, it’s entertaining as hell. Watch Now
The rough-night comedy is a thing now. There’s The Hangover, Girls Trip, Date Night, and, well, Rough Night. This one has Rachel McAdams and Jason Bateman rolling the dice on a mystery comedy with more action than a Michael Bay flick. Twists, gore, jokes, kills—we've got a winner. Watch now
Take everything you know about westerns and chuck it into the nearest lake. The Zellner brothers (Kumiko the Treasure Hunter) are not interested in cowboy tropes or wild west cliches. In fact, their latest comedy is quite the opposite. Think: man, tiny horse, and a damsel who’s definitely not in distress. Watch Now
Brad Bird is back with another emotive chapter in the Parr family saga that's saving the world one daredevil action sequence at a time. This go-round, Elastigirl wears the spandex, while Mr. Incredible stays home with the kids, who now include Baby Jack-Jack and his toy box of un-honed superpowers. Watch Now
A brazen teen befriends her mentally unbalanced step-brother while also trying to catch a predator in LA’s San Fernando Valley. OK, yes, it sounds a wee bit contrived, but this festival film belongs to Zoey Deutsch, who’s star quality adds pomp and purpose to any character she plays. Watch Now
Though the Pitch Perfect finale was, shall we say, off key, writer Kay Cannon hits her stride behind the lens with Blockers, a sex comedy for the emoji age starring John Cena, Ike Barinholtz, and Leslie Mann as parents trying to prevent their daughters from doing the deed on prom night. Watch now
19Life of the Party
Solid wife-and-husband comedy duo Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone collaborate on a feature that conjures memories of Rodney Dangerfield heading back to school. McCarthy stars as a housewife who goes back to college—the same one as her daughter—and embraces what will soon be known as her glory days. Watch now
Sure, it’s technically a crime thriller, but it’s also a clever caper comedy. Gary Ross reboots the Soderbergh heist franchise with an all-female cast: Sandra Bullock as Debbie Ocean, Danny’s estranged sister, plus Cate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling, Rihanna, Helena Bonham-Carter, Awkwafina, Anne Hathaway, and Sarah Paulson. Their target: diamonds at the Met Gala. Watch Now
21The Spy Who Dumped Me
One of the best things about international spy movies is that they’re like vacationing abroad without the hassle of actually vacationing abroad. Susanna Fogel’s comedy city-hops through the likes of Amsterdam, Berlin, and Vienna and stars Mila Kunis and Kate McKinnon as best friends in a mess of haphazard espionage alongside Outlander's hunky Sam Heughan. Watch Now
DeAnna JanesDeAnna Janes is a freelance writer and editor for a number of sites, including Harper’s BAZAAR, Tasting Table, Fast Company and Brit + Co, and is a passionate supporter of animal causes, copy savant, movie dork and reckless connoisseur of all holidays.
This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. You may be able to find more information about this and similar content at piano.io
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The Best Comedies of 2020, Ranked by Tomatometer
(Photo by Orion/courtesy Everett Collection.)
From rom-coms to coming-of-age stories to straight up joke machines, we’ve collected all the Fresh and Certified Fresh comedies with at least 20 reviews to create our guide to the best comedies of 2020, ranked by Tomatometer.
We’ve mashed together all the comedy styles, including romantic comedies (The Lovebirds, Happiest Season), comedy-dramas (On the Rocks, Yes, God, Yes), coming-of-age tales (How to Build a Girl), road trips (Come As You Are, The Trip to Greece), and genre mixers (Kajillionaire, Get Duked!, Save Yourselves!). And, of course, there are the comedies that go straight for the jokes: Eurovision Song Contest, Borat: Subsequent Moviefilm, Bill & Ted Face the Music.
If you needed a laugh in 2020, these were the best comedies of the year to watch.
Adjusted Score: 76651%
Critics Consensus: If the breezily enjoyable The Lovebirds feels like a little less than the sum of its parts, it's still an enjoyable showcase for the talents of its well-matched stars.
Synopsis: Accused of murder, a desperate couple embark on a dangerous quest to solve the mystery and clear their names.... [More]
Starring:Kumail Nanjiani, Issa Rae, Paul Sparks, Anna Camp
Directed By:Michael Showalter
Adjusted Score: 82741%
Critics Consensus:The High Note doesn't quite soar above rom-com formula, but audiences seeking some comfort viewing should find themselves solidly in harmony with this well-acted genre entry.
Synopsis: Maggie is the overworked personal assistant to Grace Davis, a superstar singer whose talent and ego have reached unbelievable heights.... [More]
Starring:Dakota Johnson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Ice Cube
Directed By:Nisha Ganatra
Adjusted Score: 68908%
Critics Consensus:Stargirl's feel-good story hits familiar coming-of-age beats, but self-assured performances and an earnest mission worn proudly make it a tune worth listening to.
Synopsis: An unassuming high school student finds himself inexplicably drawn to the free-spirited new girl whose unconventional ways change how they... [More]
Starring:Grace VanderWaal, Graham Verchere, Giancarlo Esposito, Maximiliano Hernandez
Directed By:Julia Hart
Adjusted Score: 82996%
Critics Consensus:An American Pickle lacks the tart snap viewers might expect given its creative premise, but Seth Rogen's dual performance makes this a low-key comedy to relish.
Synopsis: Preserved in pickle brine for 100 years, an Orthodox Jewish factory worker wakes up in New York City and tracks... [More]
Starring:Seth Rogen, Sarah Snook, Jorma Taccone, Sean Whalen
Directed By:Brandon Trost
Adjusted Score: 93867%
Critics Consensus:The King of Staten Island's uncertain tone and indulgent length blunt this coming-of-age dramedy's ability to find itself, but Pete Davidson's soulful performance holds it together.
Synopsis: An aimless slacker dreams of becoming a tattoo artist while living with his mother and hanging out with his friends... [More]
Starring:Pete Davidson, Marisa Tomei, Bill Burr, Bel Powley
Directed By:Judd Apatow
Adjusted Score: 79926%
Critics Consensus:Eternal Beauty deals unevenly yet honorably with complicated themes, elevated by strong work from the ever-reliable Sally Hawkins and David Thewlis.
Synopsis: After Jane falls into a state of despair over her schizophrenia, she encounters new sources of love and life with... [More]
Starring:Sally Hawkins, David Thewlis, Billie Piper, Penelope Wilton
Directed By:Craig Roberts
Adjusted Score: 81926%
Critics Consensus: This late-capitalism comedy is undeniably uneven, but Zoey Deutch's effervescent performance gives Buffaloed wings.
Synopsis: A woman is desperate to escape her life in Buffalo and finds a way by becoming a debt collector.... [More]
Starring:Zoey Deutch, Judy Greer, Jai Courtney, Noah Reid
Directed By:Tanya Wexler
Adjusted Score: 84652%
Critics Consensus:Uncle Frank finds writer-director Alan Ball still untangling the modern American family dynamic, aided by standout work from Paul Bettany and Sophia Lillis.
Synopsis: In 1973, teenaged Beth Bledsoe (Sophia Lillis) leaves her rural Southern hometown to study at New York University where her... [More]
Starring:Paul Bettany, Sophia Lillis, Peter Macdissi, Steve Zahn
Directed By:Alan Ball
Adjusted Score: 87653%
Critics Consensus: A low-key charmer led by Adam Brody's sharp performance, The Kid Detective uncovers dark comedy in a story of unfulfilled childhood potential.
Synopsis: A once-celebrated kid detective, now 31, continues to solve the same trivial mysteries between hangovers and bouts of self-pity. But... [More]
Starring:Adam Brody, Sophie NÃ©lisse, Sarah Sutherland, Wendy Crewson
Directed By:Evan Morgan
Adjusted Score: 94978%
Critics Consensus: A jolly good time with heartfelt performances and more than enough holiday cheer, all you'll want for Christmas is Happiest Season.
Synopsis: This romantic comedy is about longtime lesbian couple Abby (Kristen Stewart) and Harper (Mackenzie Davis), who made plans to go... [More]
Starring:Kristen Stewart, Mackenzie Davis, Mary Steenburgen, Victor Garber
Directed By:Clea DuVall
Adjusted Score: 89963%
Critics Consensus: Funny, heartfelt, and brought to life by a smartly assembled ensemble, Big Time Adolescence finds fresh pleasures in the crowded coming-of-age genre.
Synopsis: A drug-dealing college dropout becomes a mentor to his best friend -- a straight-laced teen who idolizes him.... [More]
Starring:Pete Davidson, Griffin Gluck, Jon Cryer, Oona Laurence
Directed By:Jason Orley
Adjusted Score: 99355%
Critics Consensus:On the Rocks isn't as potent as its top-shelf ingredients might suggest, but the end result still goes down easy -- and offers high proof of Bill Murray's finely aged charm.
Synopsis: A New York woman and her impulsive, larger-than-life father try to find out if her husband is having an affair.... [More]
Starring:Bill Murray, Rashida Jones, Marlon Wayans, Jessica Henwick
Directed By:Sofia Coppola
Adjusted Score: 106030%
Critics Consensus:Borat Subsequent Moviefilm proves Sacha Baron Cohen's comedic creation remains a sharp tool for exposing the most misguided -- or utterly repugnant -- corners of American culture.
Synopsis: Released from prison for bringing shame to his country, Kazakh funnyman Borat risks life and limb when he returns to... [More]
Starring:Sacha Baron Cohen, Maria Bakalova
Directed By:Jason Woliner
Adjusted Score: 85327%
Critics Consensus: A fun, fast paced film for all, Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made celebrates the power of imagination with a delightful sense of humor and just the right amount of bears.
Synopsis: ... [More]
Directed By:Tom McCarthy
Adjusted Score: 92907%
Critics Consensus: The rare comedy thriller that's funny as well as thrilling, Get Duked! marks writer-director Ninian Doff as a filmmaker with a bright future.
Synopsis: A camping trip in the Scottish Highlands turns into a fight for survival when four teens become the target of... [More]
Starring:Eddie Izzard, Kate Dickie, Kevin Guthrie, Jonathan Aris
Directed By:Ninian Doff
Adjusted Score: 103540%
Critics Consensus: Other adaptations may do a better job of consistently capturing the spirit of the classic source material, but Jane Austen fans should still find a solid match in this Emma.
Synopsis: Beautiful, smart and wealthy, Emma Woodhouse navigates her way through misguided matches, romantic missteps and the challenges of growing up... [More]
Starring:Anya Taylor-Joy, Johnny Flynn, Bill Nighy, Mia Goth
Directed By:Autumn de Wilde
Adjusted Score: 90927%
Critics Consensus:Banana Split serves up a sweet comedic dish that serves as a delightful calling card for co-writer and star Hannah Marks.
Synopsis: After a messy break-up with her high school boyfriend, April strikes up an unexpected friendship with his new girlfriend, Clara.... [More]
Starring:Hannah Marks, Liana Liberato, Dylan Sprouse, Jacob Batalon
Directed By:Benjamin Kasulke
Adjusted Score: 102977%
Critics Consensus: Whether you see Kajillionaire as refreshingly unique or simply bizarre will depend on your cinematic adventurousness -- and fans of writer-director Miranda July wouldn't have it any other way.
Synopsis: Two con artists have spent 26 years training their only daughter to swindle, scam and steal at every turn. During... [More]
Starring:Evan Rachel Wood, Gina Rodriguez, Richard Jenkins, Debra Winger
Directed By:Miranda July
Adjusted Score: 96999%
Critics Consensus:Come As You Are approaches sensitive subjects with heart and humor, taking audiences on a thoroughly entertaining road trip to a crowd-pleasing destination.
Synopsis: A traveling nurse takes three disabled men on a road trip to Montreal so they can lose their virginity at... [More]
Starring:Grant Rosenmeyer, Hayden Szeto, Ravi Patel, Gabourey Sidibe
Directed By:Richard Wong
Adjusted Score: 100161%
Critics Consensus: Natalia Dyer's charming performance -- and writer-director Karen Maine's sensitive work -- will leave audiences saying Yes, God, Yes to this coming-of-age dramedy.
Synopsis: A Catholic girl finds herself having tempting thoughts after an AOL chat turns unexpectedly racy.... [More]
Starring:Natalia Dyer, Christian Adam, Susan Blackwell, Alisha Boe
Directed By:Karen Maine
Adjusted Score: 102969%
Critics Consensus: Anchored by an outstanding Hugh Jackman, Bad Education finds absurd laughs -- and a worthy message -- in the aftermath of a real-life scandal.
Synopsis: A Long Island school superintendent and his assistant are credited with bringing the district unprecedented prestige. Frank is a master... [More]
Starring:Allison Janney, Hugh Jackman, Kathrine Narducci, Geraldine Viswanathan
Directed By:Cory Finley
Adjusted Score: 110668%
Critics Consensus: Strong performances, assured direction, and a refreshingly original concept make Palm Springs a romcom that's easy to fall in love with.
Synopsis: Stuck in a time loop, two wedding guests develop a budding romance while living the same day over and over... [More]
Starring:Andy Samberg, Cristin Milioti, J.K. Simmons, Meredith Hagner
Directed By:Max Barbakow
Adjusted Score: 103416%
Critics Consensus: For viewers in search of an uncommonly smart, tender, and funny coming-of-age story, The Half of It has everything.
Synopsis: A shy, introverted student helps the school jock woo a girl whom, secretly, they both want.... [More]
Starring:Leah Lewis, Daniel Diemer, Alexxis Lemire, Enrique Murciano
Directed By:Alice Wu
Adjusted Score: 99653%
Critics Consensus: A dark teen comedy with an explosive twist, Spontaneous reaffirms Katherine Langford as a rising star -- and marks debuting director Brian Duffield as a filmmaker to watch.
Synopsis: When students in their high school inexplicably start to explode, seniors Mara and Dylan struggle to survive in a world... [More]
Starring:Katherine Langford, Charlie Plummer, Yvonne Orji, Hayley Law
Directed By:Brian Duffield
Adjusted Score: 106452%
Critics Consensus:The Forty-Year-Old Version opens a compelling window into the ebbs and flows of the artist's life -- and announces writer-director-star Radha Blank as a major filmmaking talent with her feature debut.
Synopsis: A struggling New York City playwright finds inspiration by reinventing herself as a rapper.... [More]
Starring:Welker White, Reed Birney, Radha Blank, Peter Y. Kim
Directed By:Radha Blank
Ki comedy ki
Humor is such a subjective thing. It's easy to be ridiculous, or worse—boring. But 2020 boasts a number of films that are destined to be comedic gold, or at least a great time at the theater (a.k.a. your living room). There are a couple reboots and sequels in here, plus a number of comedic superstars are back in a big way, thanks to Ghostbusters: Afterlife, Coming 2 America, and a few other revivals we have our eye on. (You can check out our 2019 list of the best comedy movies here.)
Note: The coronavirus pandemic has and will likely continue to delay the release dates on many of these films. Even if some of these end up coming out in 2021 (like the new Ghostbusters), we'll keep them on the list as originally slated for 2020. Never fear—there's still plenty of funny on this list that you can watch right this second.
This content is imported from YouTube. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.
Release date: October 16, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Cooper Raiff, Dylan Gelula, Amy Landecker, Logan Miller, Olivia Welch, Abby Quinn
The first of college can be rough. In between the feelings of homesickness, fraternity parties, drama with your roommate, and the process of making a whole new friend group, you actually have to go to school in between all of it. In his first debut film, filmmaker Raiff depicts all those not-so-fond memories of freshman year in a movie about a lonely first-time student who finds himself in an unexpected relationship with his residential advisor.
This content is imported from YouTube. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.
Release date: February 14, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Will Ferrell, Zach Woods, Zoe Chao, Miranda Otto, Giulio Berruti
You'd think when a natural disaster is coming for you and your family; you would run for your lives together in fear, not leave them and grab your phone in the process. But that's what happens to Billie ( Louis-Dreyfus) when her husband Pete (Ferrell) flees the scene of an avalanche, leaving her and their two kids to fend for themselves. Have I mentioned they're on a family vacation? Yeah, definitely not the best time to be selfish.
This content is imported from YouTube. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.
Release date: October 23, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Malin Akerman, Kat Dennings, Jack Donnelly, Aisha Tyler, Jane Seymour, Chelsea Peretti
Nothing sounds better than a Thanksgiving away from prying-family members and deciding to eat turkey at your uber-rich, recently divorced friend's mansion in Los Angeles. Sure, she has a kid, but that Abby (Dennings) can work with. It's just all the other people her host, Molly (Akerman), invited that has her second-guessing her decision to not go home for the holidays. The film's a nice reminder of all the wonderful yet crazy dinner parties we'll be subjected to once we're in a post-COVID vaccine world.
Love Wedding Repeat
Release date: April 10, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Sam Claflin, Olivia Munn, Freida Pinto, Eleanor Tomlinson, Joel Fry, Jack Farthing
Weddings, remember those? (Unless you've gone to one recently...which...well...no comment.) The creepy groomsmen, the blushing bride, the friends who ask when it's your turn to walk down the aisle, and the DJ that should never be hired at another wedding again. All those beautiful memories get re-experienced in Love, Wedding, Repeat as Jack's (Claflin) sister wedding shortly turns into one of the most talked-about weddings of the season but for all the wrong reasons.
Like a Boss
Release date: January 10, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Tiffany Haddish, Rose Byrne, Salma Hayek, Billy Porter, Jimmy O. Yang, Lisa Kudrow
I'm a sucker for a movie about two girl bosses who get some sh*t done! Sue me! Best friends Mia Carter (Haddish) and Mel Paige (Byrne) have a successful make-up company but are in some serious debt they can't escape. So, it looks like an angel sent from above when beauty empress Claire Luna (Hayek) wants to invest over a million dollars in their company. But with a deal this good, some things may come at a price, like the lifelong friendship shared between Mia and Mel.
Release date: October 2, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Katherine Langford, Charlie Plummer, Yvonne Orji, Hayley Law, Rob Huebel, Piper Perabo
High school seniors Mara and Dylan have always had a little flirtation going on between them, and decide to finally act on those feelings when their classmates randomly start to explode. (I'm talking like heads popping like a balloon bursting if you want the gritty details.) Sure, it's the worst time possible to start a relationship, but when every day could be your last, why not live a little? This dark comedy is a horror and romance movie lover's dream, basically.
Release date: January 10, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Michelle Dockery, Jeremy Strong, Lyne Renee, Colin Farrell, Henry Golding
I couldn't be happier that this film ended up being a critical and box office success. Largely considered the return of "Guy Ritchie making good movies" (let us never speak of that King Arthur movie again. I still can't believe I paid money to watch it), the film is as action-packed as it is funny. As an added bonus: This is totally confirmation that Henry Golding isn't just a one-hit wonder (I wasn't worried) and that the man can excel in comedic roles too.
Yes, God, Yes
Release date: July 24, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Natalia Dyer, Francesca Reale, Alisha Boe, Allison Shrum
For anyone who had a very religious upbringing, this dramedy may be hilariously familiar. Teenager Alice (Dyer), growing up in the '00s, is stuck between the abstinence-only sex education she gets at school and the (super-normal) impulses she has as a teenager watching Titanic and sneaking onto AOL chatrooms. The film's not exactly a satire, but it does have some smart things to say about the hypocrisy of religious sex-ed as well as the harms of slut-shaming (poor Alice is falsely accused of performing sexual acts she's never even heard of). Even if you're less familiar with the subject matter, come for the sweet, awkward sexual awakening story.
The King of Staten Island
Release date: June 12, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Pete Davidson, Marisa Tomei, Bill Burr, Bel Powley, Maude Apatow, Steve Buscemi
An alternative history of what would have happened to Pete Davidson if he hadn't become an SNL star, it's a typical Judd Apatow "lovable loser" setup. Davidson's playing a lamer, but still funny version of himself, and digs surprisingly deep as his character has to face the trauma of his firefighter father's death (based partially on Davidson's real life). But the supporting cast is the real joy. Burr and Buscemi in particular are delightfully believable firefighters who become quasi-father figures; It's not as corny as it sounds, but it's got that trademark Apatow sweetness to make this an easy viewing.
An American Pickle
Release date: August 6, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Seth Rogen, Sarah Snook, Jorma Taccone
Rogen perfectly plays two roles here: He's both Herschel, the 1919 Jewish factory worker who wakes up 100 years later after getting brined in a pickle vat (it's as weird as it sounds, but just go with it) and his ancestor, app developer Ben. What follows is a fish out of water tale with a twist—the film skewers everything from Twitter and hipsters to Hershel's century-old ignorance and callousness. It can be a bit inconsistent (the film tries to shift between barbed and wholesome, and the comedy sometimes comes off as too broad), but it has enough to say that it's salty-sweet where it counts.
I Used to Go Here
Release date: August 7, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Gillian Jacobs, Josh Wiggins, Hannah Marks, Forrest Goodluck, Jorma Taccone, Jemaine Clement
This one hits hilariously—and sometimes painfully—close to home for me. Kate wrote a book! And the cover (and sales) are terrible. She's an author! But her fiancé dumped her, and her book tour got cancelled. She gets invited to do a book reading by her old professor—Clement, perfectly playing that professor who's just on the wrong side of creepy. Then she just kind of...sticks around on campus, unsure where to go from here and hanging out with a bunch of current students. It's a sweet and honest look at the stresses and pains of being a 30-something (and a creative professional) who just doesn't feel like she can face the world ahead. It's also a pretty relevant quarantine watch, TBH.
Release date: February 21, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Josh O'Connor, Bill Nighy, Mia Goth, Johnny Flynn, Miranda Hart
This will be a controversial statement among my fellow MC editors, but Emma is my favorite Jane Austen book (I know!!). It's so snarky and has a deliriously happy ending without letting its fallible heroine off the hook for her (often-terrible) behavior. Beyond the effervescent Anya Taylor-Joy, consider at how many incredible actors are in this. Bill Nighy? Funny in everything! Josh O'Connor? Yes, that guy from The Crown! Miranda Hart? The best part of Spy! And it all came together brilliantly—I think my favorite part might have been Johnny Flynn as a very sexy Mr. Knightley. If you're looking for light and fluffy, this is the perfect pick.
Release date: February 21, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Samara Weaving, Daniel Radcliffe, Natasha Liu Bordizzo, Rhys Darby
Post-Harry Potter, Radcliffe has done some weird and wacky stuff (and even when it doesn't work, I always appreciate the risk-taking). This feels like one of the ones that actually works. Right now on Rotten Tomatoes it's juuuust on the side of fresh in terms of positive reviews. All-around loser Miles gets forced into a gladiator fight to the death—guns are literally stapled to his hands. He has to team up with Nix (utter badass Weaving, who totally nailed it in Ready or Not) to save his girlfriend, the day, etc. Into it.
Release date:March 20, 2020. Now streaming
Starring: Michael Angelo Covino, Kyle Marvin, Gayle Rankin, Judith Godrèche
Kyle and Mike are two best friends who share a tight bond...right up until Mike sleeps with Kyle's fiancée. What comes next is a story of friendship, frustration, and love, packed alongside jokes funny that are relatable enough to make you feel like you know the characters in your real life. It's not often we see movies focused on male friendships, so The Climb is a breath of fresh air, in some cases quite literally.
Release date: March 27, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Hannah Marks, Liana Liberato, Dylan Sprouse
Ugh, this looks so cute. April (Marks) gets dumped by her high school boyfriend (Sprouse, playing against type with a long and terrible haircut), only to fall in platonic love with his new girlfriend (Liberato). Think of it like Booksmart, but more of a love triangle. It includes badass music, witty banter, and killer supporting characters. It's not regular teen angst, it's cool teen angst. You should watch.
Release date: March 27, 2020 on Netflix
Starring: Courtney B. Vance, Lashun Pollard, Michael Mobley, Robert Cox, Mamoudou Athie
Part drama, part comedy (I also included this on my best drama movies list, don't @ me), this is a sweet story about following your dreams. Oh, and it just so happens to have some of the funniest banter in a film this year. What happens when you work at your dad's restaurant (Vance has never been better) but you want to become a sommelier? Athie is exceptional, hilarious, and irritated at having to explain what a sommelier is, and he is quietly determined. There isn't a wrong note in the whole thing.
Release date: Originally April 3, now May 22, 2020, streaming
Starring: Issa Rae, Kumail Nanjiani, Anna Camp, Kyle Bornheimer
Everyone's favorites, Issa Rae and Kumail Nanjiani, play a couple who find themselves caught up in a crime unexpectedly. As the two of them try to solve the case to clear their name, they get into predictably wacky, terrible situations. TBH, the fact that these two are costars and singularly funny all on their own means this is worth the watch. Critics were a bit divided, but pretty much everyone can agree its two stars were the best part. Count me in.
The Personal History of David Copperfield
Release Date: Originally May 8, now August 28, 2020
Starring: Dev Patel, Aneurin Barnard, Peter Capaldi, Hugh Laurie
I love seeing Dev Patel on any screen so, seeing him in The Personal History of David Copperfield—based on Charles Dickens's most famous novel—will be my Christmas, birthday, and half-birthday present wrapped up all in one. Much like the book it's modeled after, the movie will follow the life of David Copperfield as he sets out to become a writer, and promises to be as sharp-tongued as ever. Stay for the supporting cast, who are having so much fun that you're having fun just by being in the same room together. This has been delayed several times (but did premiere in the UK to some pretty incredible reviews) so this will be the best late summer present I needed.
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run
Release date: Originally May 22, 2020, now TBD 2021
Starring: Clancy Brown, Keanu Reeves, Awkwafina, Snoop Dog, Tom Kenny
I love SpongeBob, and not just for the GIFs. The show and its sweet characters are an indelible part of my teen years (I maintain that you can still totally find it funny as an adult). The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water was both critically loved and a box office hit, so the chances of a third movie were always good. I mean, Keanu Reeves, Awkwafina, and Snoop Dog will be in this. How can you not love it?
The High Note
Release date: May 29, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Dakota Johnson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Bill Pullman, June Diane Raphael, Ice Cube
This film is many things—a drama, a rom-com, a song about music and music-making—but it's also surprisingly funny. Johnson, who's been steadily working her way into more challenging roles, is both enthusiastic and utterly jaded by the industry; Ross plays joyful/caustic better than anyone I know. Raphael, who elevates every movie she's in, adds the much-needed jolt of pure funny to push it from fine to great. And Ice Cube's playing pretty much the same character as in 21 Jump Street, but it totally works.
Release date: May 29, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Steve Carell, Rose Byrne, Topher Grace, Chris Cooper
I'm all for the serious roles Steve Carell has been doing lately, but nothing's more enjoyable than watching him in a comedy. Written and directed by Jon Stewart, this film follows Gary, a Democratic strategist (Carell), as he sets out to convince a retired marine (Chris Cooper) to run for mayor. Then the Republicans send Faith (Rose Byrne, the best) to shake things up. The criticism that the film is so unlike our current political situation is actually, arguably, its greatest strength—a little humor and heart amongst the cynicism.
Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga
Release date: June 26, 2020, on Netflix
Starring: Will Ferrell, Rachel McAdams, Dan Stevens, Pierce Brosnan
If you know anything about Eurovision, you'll know that it's pure, campy, ridiculous fun—and perfect fodder for a comedy. Ferrell's not doing anything he hasn't already done before as a kooky but lovable goofball. It's more McAdams' time to shine, as she absolutely did in the underrated and terrific Game Night. But, truly, the standout is Stevens, who really gets what movie he's in, and is acting all the way to the rafters as the OTT icon that the movie needs. The film is loooong, but stick with it.
Release date: July 10, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Andy Samberg, Cristin Milioti, J.K. Simmons, Peter Gallagher
Think of it like Groundhog Day, minus the wholesomeness. Sarah (Milioti) and Nyles (Samberg) hit it off at a wedding, but then amidst a late-night hookup, she gets entrapped in an infinite time loop—doomed to relive the same day over and over. Nyles, who's been stuck for a while, seems content to just let his days play out in endless repeating boredom, but Sarah's determined to get out. It's really Milioti's movie, and she's not afraid to throw herself into it (sometimes literally). I've loved her since How I Met Your Mother and 30 Rock, and up until now she's been criminally underrated as a comedian. Plus: An infinite time loop is just about the perfect analogy for quarantine.
Release date: Originally July 10, 2020, now June 11, 2021
Starring: Ernie Hudson, Bill Murray, Finn Wolfhard, Paul Rudd, Annie Potts, Carrie Coon, Mckenna Grace
I might as well put this in the "most anticipated movies ever" category. After the last reboot had a less-than-ideal reception, Hollywood's re-rebooting the series by staying much closer to the source material with a direct sequel. Director Jason Reitman also directed the satirical Thank You for Smoking and the sweet, snarky Juno. Plus, it's got Paul Rudd and some throwback casting, so fingers crossed for a fun, funny sci-fi joyride.
Bill & Ted Face the Music
Release date: August 28, 2020. Now streaming.
Starring: Keanu Reeves, Kristen Schaal, Alex Winter, Samara Weaving
Hi again, Samara! File this under: Really hoping this one is good and not just a money-grab. I have a soft spot for the lovable doofuses that gave Reeves his early-career dude vibe. And the premise sounds semi-interesting: Bill and Ted are now middle-aged dads, presumably just as clueless as ever, trying to finally write a hit song and save the day. Reeves' re-re-resurgence as a comedic actor and not just an action badass (see also the delightful Always Be My Maybe), means I'll be there for his performance alone.
The French Dispatch
Release date: October 16, 2020
Starring: Frances McDormand, Bill Murray, Timothée Chalamet, Léa Seydoux, Saoirse Ronan, Owen Wilson
If you like Wes Anderson, his latest coming in 2020 promises to be just as Anderson-y as ever. I'm a fan of his quirky style, even when he's taking a risk with the material; He's not without controversy, but he's imaginative and experimental with his form. When it works, it really works. In this case, we know it's based on the book of the same name: The film's about "an outpost of an American newspaper in a fictional 20th-century French city" and it's drawn from stories written in The French Dispatch magazine. Oh and it has a whole bunch of his favorite stars in it, including (per the trailer) a naked Chalamet(!!). It sounds very on-brand for Anderson, is what I'm saying.
Release date: November 25, 2020
Starring: Alison Brie, Mackenzie Davis, Kristen Stewart, Dan Levy, Aubrey Plaza
I kind of love this concept: A woman plans to propose to her girlfriend at a holiday party, only to realize she's not out to her conservative parents. A neat little twist on the holiday rom-com, this feels like the movie we need this winter season. ALSO: Dan Levy, post-Schitt's Creek! I cannot wait.
Release date: Originally July 3, 2020, now December 11, 2020
Starring: Ryan Reynolds, Jodie Comer, Taika Waititi, Joe Keery
Ryan Reynolds is always giving it 110 percent. This movie seems to "get" what makes Reynolds funny by forcing the super-attractive actor into an ugly/schlubby/otherwise incongruous setup. In this case, he's the timid Guy, forced into action star badassery through a comedy of errors. Taika Waititi is never not funny, and it's great to see Killing Eve badass Jodie Comer spread her wings on the comedic side.
Coming 2 America
Release date: December 18, 2020, now March 5, 2021
Starring: Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall, Shari Headley, Leslie Jones, Tracy Morgan
Of all the potential remakes/sequels this coming year (see also Bill & Ted and Bad Boys 3, among others) this is the one I'm the most hopeful about. Eddie Murphy's recent stellar performance on SNL proves he's still bringing the energy in the right comedy vehicle. A lot of the film's original stars and writers are back, plus some new faces—director Craig Brewer also directed Murphy in the very funny Dolemite Is My Name, which sounds promising.
Release date: TBD 2020
Starring: Riley Keough, Nicholas Braun, Colman Domingo
It got a standing ovation at Sundance, and it's based on a real (kind of??) Twitter thread. Sounds fascinating. In it, a stripper (Page) gets a ride to Florida with her friend (Keough, whom I quite enjoy) and her boyfriend/pimp. To say a "wild ride" ensues would be an understatement. Like Uncorked, there's sure to be plenty of drama here, but what keeps it fresh and exciting is how unexpectedly funny the tale is. Expect Florida jokes (so relevant).
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American cable and satellite television channel
|Headquarters||345 Hudson Street|
New York, New York, U.S. 10014
(downscaled to 4:3480iletterboxed for the SDTV feed)
|Owner||MTV Entertainment Group|
(ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks)
|Launched||June 1, 1991; 30 years ago (1991-06-01)|
|Replaced||The Comedy Channel|
Ha!(channel was a merger of the two formerly-separate services)
|Former names||CTV: The Comedy Network (April 1 – May 31, 1991)|
|Webcast||CC Live (U.S. pay-TV subcribers only)|
|Available on most cable providers||Channel slots vary on each system|
|Wave Broadband||Channel 745 (HD) Channel 45 (SD)|
|Dish Network||Channel 107 (HD)|
|DirecTV||Channel 249 (East; HD)|
Channel 249-1 (West; HD)
|Verizon Fios||Channel 190 (SD)|
Channel 690 (HD)
|U-verse TV||Channel 140 (SD) |
Channel 1140 (HD)
|FuboTV, Philo, Sling TV, DirecTV Stream, Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV, Vidgo TV|
Comedy Central is an American basic cablechannel owned by ViacomCBS through its domestic network division's MTV Entertainment Group unit, based in Manhattan. The channel is geared for mature audiences and carries comedy programming in the form of both original, licensed, and syndicated series, stand-up comedy specials, and feature films. It is available to approximately 86.723 million households in the United States as of September 2018.
Since the early 2000s, Comedy Central has expanded globally with localized channels in Europe (including the UK), India, Southeast Asia, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand,Middle East, and Africa. The international channels are operated by ViacomCBS Networks International.
1989–1991: Pre-launch as The Comedy Channel
On November 15, 1989, Time-Life, the owners of HBO, launched The Comedy Channel as the first cable channel devoted exclusively to comedy-based programming. On April 1, 1990, Viacom (who owned MTV, VH1, and Nickelodeon) launched a rival channel called Ha! that featured reruns of situation comedies and some original sketch comedy.
The Comedy Channel's programs were broadcast from the HBO Downtown Studios at 120 East 23rd Street in Manhattan. The format prior to the merger with Ha! included several original and unconventional programs such as Onion World with Rich Hall and Mystery Science Theater 3000, as well as laid-back variety/talk shows hosted by comedians, including The Sweet Life with Rachel Sweet, Night After Night with Allan Havey, Sports Monster, and The Higgins Boys and Gruber, the latter of whom performed sketches in between showings of vintage television series like Supercar, Clutch Cargo, and Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp.
The standard format for The Comedy Channel's shows usually involved the various hosts introducing clips culled from the acts of stand-up comedians as well as classic comedies of the 1970s and 1980s, such as Young Frankenstein and Kentucky Fried Movie, presented in a style similar to music videos. In the early days, certain hours of the day when clips were shown without "host segments" were dubbed Short Attention Span Theater. In 1990, hosts under this title, Jon Stewart and Patty Rosborough, were introduced. Comedian Marc Maron also hosted the series.
While The Comedy Channel broadcast mostly low-budget original programming, Ha!'s schedule featured sitcom and sketch comedy reruns (many of which had been previously licensed for sister network Nick at Nite) as well as complete 90-minute reruns of Saturday Night Live from the sixth through 16th seasons.
After two years of limited distribution, the two channels merged into one, relaunching on April 1, 1991 as CTV: The Comedy Network. On June 1, 1991, the network changed its name to Comedy Central to prevent issues with the Canadian broadcast television network CTV, which would eventually be its Canadian content partner through The Comedy Network when that channel started operations six years later. Comedy Partners was originally a partnership of Home Box Office, Inc., the subsidiary of Time Warner that owned The Comedy Channel and HBO's half and Viacom Hearty Ha! Ha! LLC, the subsidiary that owned Ha! and Viacom's half of the network during its first years on air. Viacom bought out AOL Time Warner's half in April 2003 for $1.23 billion. Despite HBO's exit from the venture, the Viacom Media Networks division in charge of Comedy Central is still called Comedy Partners, currently being a partnership of Viacom International, the operating subsidiary of ViacomCBS of which ViacomCBS Domestic Media Networks is a division and Viacom Hearty Ha! Ha! LLC, the subsidiary that owned Ha! and Viacom's original half of the network.
From the late 1980s through the mid-1990s, much of the programming on Comedy Central and its predecessors consisted of comedy films, sitcom reruns, half-hour specials, and clip shows featuring comedians. Except for the cult favorite Mystery Science Theater 3000, the channel had a relatively small viewership. A notable early success was Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher, which after showing promise on Comedy Central was quickly snapped up by ABC. Additionally, The Daily Show had got its start with original host Craig Kilborn, although it would take a few more years for the show to reach high popularity (and a shift toward a focus on political humor) with the introduction of Jon Stewart (who was former co-host of Short Attention Span Theater from 1991). The channel was first launched as a joint venture between Time Warner and Viacom, while Warner Home Video distributed the home media rights to the network's shows until 2003.
Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist was also a notable original program from this era, as well as the game show Win Ben Stein's Money. Successful non-original programming included Canadian comedy group The Kids in the Hall and British shows such as the UK edition of Whose Line Is It Anyway? (the predecessor of the U.S. version, featuring much of the same American cast as would later be seen in the U.S.) and the sitcom Absolutely Fabulous. Some later seasons of AbFab, as it was informally known, were partially financed by Comedy Central. Comedy Central also had the national rights to broadcast reruns of Seattle's Almost Live! between 1992 and 1993.
The channel made a breakthrough when South Park premiered in 1997. Being one of the first major basic cable shows to carry the TV-MA rating for mature audiences, the show was considered too controversial to be picked up by any mainstream network; the Fox Broadcasting Company (known for The Simpsons) for example refused to pick up the series due to the over-the-top offensive content at the time. As word of mouth spread, the number of people who requested that Comedy Central should be added to their cable providers increased, and the channel became available in over 50% of American homes by 1998. But, by 1999, with the cancellation of Mystery Science Theater 3000, the channel was hemorrhaging viewers.
On November 13, 2000, Comedy Central introduced a modernized version of its globe logo, by straightening the buildings and removing the transmitter and marquee. The management of the network said that the transmitter of the 1992 and 1997 logos was said to "communicate the 1950s broadcast era". It also began to use a "seriously" styled-Baby Einstein graphics, and a new slogan "This is Comedy Central!". In 2002, Comedy Central Records was formed as a means of releasing albums by comedians that have appeared on the network.
By 2003, Viacom gained full ownership of Comedy Central, and since 2003, Comedy Central has created a tradition of roasting comedians in the style of the New York Friars' Club roasts. During these roasts, friends of the roastee, along with other comedians, take turns making fun of the roastee, the other roasters, and occasionally audience members. So far, the roastees have included Denis Leary,Jeff Foxworthy,Pamela Anderson,William Shatner,Flavor Flav,Bob Saget, Larry the Cable Guy, Joan Rivers, Rob Reiner, David Hasselhoff, Donald Trump, Charlie Sheen, Roseanne Barr, James Franco, Justin Bieber, Rob Lowe, Bruce Willis, and Alec Baldwin.
The success of South Park, despite its mature content, encouraged the network to continue to push the limits on adult language. Every Saturday and Sunday at 1 am. ET, a movie, comedy special, or animated program is shown unedited for language as part of a block called the Secret Stash. It premiered on July 4, 2003, with the unedited cable television debut of South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut. Though no language is censored on the Secret Stash, most nudity in the programs is still edited out, except for limited nudity allowed in animated programs such as Drawn Together, and rear nudity.
In late 2004, it was reported that the four highest-rated shows on Comedy Central were, in descending order, South Park, Chappelle's Show, The Daily Show and Reno 911!. Shortly thereafter, Dave Chappelle backed out of the much-anticipated third season of Chappelle's Show. Meanwhile, The Daily Show continued to climb in the ratings. In October 2005, on the occasion of a new three-year contract for South Park and the launch of Daily Show spin-off The Colbert Report, it was reported that South Park and The Daily Show were the two highest-rated shows on Comedy Central. Comedy Central chief Doug Herzog was reported as saying that he hoped to continue to air new seasons of South Park forever, and that The Colbert Report fulfilled a long-held plan to extend the Daily Show brand.
On April 5, 2006, in a controversial two-part episode arc titled "Cartoon Wars Part I" and "Cartoon Wars Part II", South Park touched the issue of the recent protest over the Danish cartoon drawings depicting the Muslim prophet Muhammad. The image of Muhammad did not appear in the episode. The episode also mocked fellow cartoon Family Guy. On April 13, 2006, Comedy Central issued a statement which appears to confirm that the network prohibited the show's creators from airing an image of Muhammad. The statement reads, "In light of recent world events, we feel we made the right decision." An anonymous source close to the show indicated that South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone were informed of the policy several weeks earlier and wrote this story arc in protest. This was a change of policy for Comedy Central, having allowed South Park to portray an image of Muhammad in an earlier episode, "Super Best Friends". Oddly enough, an image of Muhammad was still briefly visible in the opening credits of the "Cartoon Wars" episodes (the image had been there as a call-back to "Super Best Friends").
On January 15, 2007, MTV Networks International launched Comedy Central in Germany which is available for free throughout Europe. The channel airs 33 shows either dubbed in German or subtitled while also airing locally produced shows. On April 30, Dutch channel The Box was relaunched as the Dutch version of Comedy Central during the primetime and overnight hours timesharing with Nickelodeon. On May 1, 2007, Comedy Central expanded to Italy, replacing Paramount Comedy.
On June 27, 2007, CTVglobemedia-owned networks CTV and The Comedy Network obtained the exclusive Canadian rights to the entire Comedy Central library of past and current programs on all electronic platforms, under a multi-year agreement with Viacom, expanding on past programming agreements between the two channels. Canadian users attempting to visit Comedy Central websites were redirected to The Comedy Network's website. The Canadian channel retains its brand name, but the agreement is otherwise very similar to the earlier CTV–Viacom deal for MTV in Canada. As of 2011, this geocaching no longer applies and both the Comedy Central and The Comedy Network websites can be accessed worldwide, except for videos which remain only accessible within each respective country.
In December 2007, Comedy Central picked up a show hosted by Lewis Black called Lewis Black's Root of All Evil, which debuted in March 2008. On January 9, 2008, it was announced the Comedy Central and MTV would allow the streaming its programs online for free starting in February that year. On January 24, Scott Landsman became the Vice President of Original Programming and Development at the network.
On March 27, 2008, the Swedish Radio and TV Authority approved an application from Comedy Central regarding being allowed to air television programs in Sweden. The grant allows Comedy Central to broadcast on the terrestrial television network between January 1, 2009, and March 31, 2014, after which a new request must be submitted to continue broadcasting. Comedy Central's U.S. flagship network picked up a remake of The Gong Show hosted by Dave Attell, star of his former self-titled Comedy Central series Insomniac, which debuted in July 2008. Another new show called Reality Bites Back premiered after The Gong Show with Dave Attell.
In June 2008, Comedy Central picked up the sketch comedy show Important Things with Demetri Martin, which began airing in February 2009. On April 1, 2009, Comedy Central began airing in New Zealand as channel 010 on SKY Digital. On April 6, Paramount Comedy in the UK and Ireland rebranded as Comedy Central. On April 7, 2009, it was announced Comedy Central would air new stand-up comedy specials starring Christopher Titus, Gabriel Iglesias, Pablo Francisco, Jim Breuer, Mitch Fatel and Pete Correale, and ventriloquist Jeff Dunham. An animated show entitled Ugly Americans was also picked up by the network. In 2009, The Goode Family premiered. Also in 2009, Thomas Lennon announced via Twitter that Reno 911! had been canceled after six seasons, much to fan disapproval. The network also played a role in the revival of the animated series Futurama, which Fox had canceled in 2003. New episodes began airing on Comedy Central in 2010. But in May 2013, Comedy Central released a statement saying that the contract between Futurama and Comedy Central would not be renewed and that the summer of 2013 would be Futurama's final season on the air. However, episodes continue to run weekly on Comedy Central.
In 2009, Comedy Central introduced an Internet viral video reaction show hosted by comedian Daniel Tosh called Tosh.0. During its second year in the summer of 2010, it was the most viewed show, overtaking the Daily Show and The Colbert Report for male audiences aged 18–49. Many of the segments in Tosh.0's past seasons have received more views on Comedy Central's YouTube channel than any other show.
South Park episodes "200" and "201" aired in April 2010, revisiting the issue of the Islamic religious figure Muhammad's perceived immunity to parody, for fear of violent retaliation. The Super Best Friends returned, but Muhammad was entirely covered by a black bar reading "CENSORED" through all of his screen time. By the second episode of the two-parter, Comedy Central decided to censor every instance of his name, as well as three entire monologues, from the end of the show. The monologues dealt with the subjects of censorship and intimidation but did not use Muhammad's name. Parker and Stone have since issued a statement to the press, confirming that the "bleeps" were added weeks after the show was finished and that Comedy Central has refused to let them post the original version of South Park, in addition to retroactively removing the original "Super Best Friends" episode. Parker threatened to quit the show after this incident.
On December 9, 2010, Comedy Central introduced a new logo for the network that launched on January 1, 2011, which left behind the previous theme of a world-sized "tower" broadcasting the network/skyscrapers, in favor of an image of two "C"'s, with one of them and the word "Central" turned upside-down within the new logomark. The new logo was designed to represent the network's unique brand of comedy (with some drawing comparisons to the copyright symbol as inspiration for its design and use), and to provide the network with a logo that could be easily used across different platforms, such as social media. However, the "bars" version of the logo used from 2000 to 2011 was intended to be Comedy Central's new logo as part of a planned rebranding in 2010, and the network used it short-lived until the network started a logo nicknamed the "Comedymark". The logo's resemblance to the one used by the Federal Communications Commission was also pointed out. It went on to win several industry awards.
The Polish version of the channel was the first international Comedy Central channel to switch to the new logo on February 20, 2011; followed by the Hungarian version on April 1, 2011. Versions of the channel in Germany and the Netherlands soon followed on October 1, 2011. Comedy Central New Zealand rebranded in April 2012. Viacom 18 launched the channel in India on January 23, 2012.StarHub launched Comedy Central Asia in Singapore on November 1, 2012; the channel was added to its Basic Entertainment Upsize group.
In 2012, Atom.com (formerly AtomFilms) was absorbed into Comedy Central.
On April 1, 2012, Comedy Central launched a Russian-language version of Comedy Central branded as Paramount Comedy in Russia.
On October 21, 2013, the network premiered a nightly comedy-game show series @midnight hosted by Chris Hardwick. @midnight served as an expansion to the network's nightly late-night programming. Due to low ratings, it was canceled on August 4, 2017, with the show airing its 600th and final episode as an hour-long special.
On May 14, 2014, Comedy Central expanded to Spain, replacing Paramount Comedy.
In 2014, it was announced that Stephen Colbert would leave Comedy Central to host The Late Show on CBS, following the retirement of David Letterman, the first host of Late Show. The final episode of The Colbert Report aired on Comedy Central on December 18, 2014, after nine years and a total of 1,447 episodes. The final episode of The Colbert Report was watched by 2.481 million viewers, making it the most-watched episode ever in the show's history. The finale was the most-watched cable program of the night in its time slot, beating The Daily Show which was seen by 2.032 million viewers.The Colbert Report was replaced on Comedy Central by Larry Wilmore from The Daily Show, who began hosting his series The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore on January 19, 2015. The show aired until August 18, 2016, when it was canceled due to low ratings. On February 10, 2015, Jon Stewart also announced his retirement and that he would also leave the network and The Daily Show after 16 years. Stewart's final episode aired on August 6, 2015, and Trevor Noah succeeded Stewart as new host on September 28, 2015.
On January 5, 2017, the Finnish Government granted television programming licenses in the UHF band. The grant applied by Nickelodeon International Ltd allows Comedy Central to broadcast from May 17, 2017 to January 10, 2027.
On November 16, 2017, Comedy Central launched a Ukrainian-language version of Comedy Central branded as Paramount Comedy in Ukraine. Ukrainian-language version of the channel is operated under the license purchased.
In July 2018, Comedy Central refreshed its branding, maintaining the existing double-C logomark, but introducing a new in-house typeface, and changing the network's corporate color to amber (while also using other colors to denote flagship programs).
In July 2018, Comedy Central acquired off-network reruns of King of the Hill. It was not treated as well as the other programs that were reruns, as it was shifted to the graveyard slot of 7:00 AM in the final months of Comedy Central's syndication contract. In November 2019, it was later removed as a show on the Comedy Central website entirely as the syndication contract expired.
On February 11, 2019, Jimmy Kimmel announced on his talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live! that former show Crank Yankers will be revived on Comedy Central for a fifth 20-episode season. The new season will include pranks on social media and other platforms. Kimmel's brother Jonathan Kimmel will serve as showrunner and executive producer.
On May 1, 2019, the Viacom-owned Pluto TV launched two Comedy Central networks titled Comedy Central Pluto and Comedy Central Stand Up. The former airs classic Comedy Central original series such as Reno 911!, Crank Yankers and more, while the latter airs the network's stand up specials. Later on December 15, 2020, the Comedy Central Stand Up channel was removed and a new Comedy Central Animation channel was added.
On December 4, 2019, Viacom re-merged with CBS Corporation to form ViacomCBS.
In 2020, Comedy Central began shifting its programming towards adult animation, with series pickups of Beavis and Butt-Head, a reboot of The Ren & Stimpy Show, and Daria spin-off Jodie. The network also launched a new weekday animation block initially branded as Animation Contamination, featuring reruns of South Park, Futurama and The Cleveland Show. In turn, Comedy Central has decreased its live-action slate, announcing the cancellations of Drunk History and Tosh.0, as well as the migrations of South Side and The Other Two to HBO Max and Alternatino with Arturo Castro to Quibi.
High definition channels and service
The 1080ihigh definitionsimulcast feed of Comedy Central launched in 2009 and is available on all major cable and satellite providers. The standard definition Comedy Central downscales the HD feed and broadcasts in 16:9 letterboxed to fit the 4:3 ratio.
Main article: List of programs broadcast by Comedy Central
Comedy Central has been a target of criticism from some advocacy groups, including the Parents Television and Media Council. The PTC criticizes their programming not merely for mature content, but also for what they perceive as bigotry and blasphemy, especially in regards to the programs South Park, Tosh.0, The Sarah Silverman Program, Halfway Home and the annual "Roast" special. The PTC has used their criticisms against Comedy Central for their support of the Family and Consumer Choice Act of 2007, which would allow American cable television subscribers to choose which channels they subscribe to and impose the same decency standards that are already in place on broadcast TV. The PTC has also persuaded some advertisers to lower their interest for the channel. PTC founder and former president L. Brent Bozell III said the channel has managed "to reach the top of its field in spite of – or, better put, because of – the network's sheer lack of comedic talent" by its "extensive reliance on shocking or disgusting humor."
On November 5, 2007, an open letter was written by VideoSift to protest the blocking of Comedy Central's embedded video content for non-American viewers.
On April 21, 2010, Comedy Central censored the South Park episode "201" in response to a death threat issued by users of a radical Muslim website over the episode's planned depiction of the Islamic prophetMuhammad, which led several newspaper columnists to condemn the network's actions as tantamount to abetting terrorism. As a rare result in the series' history, "201" and the episode that preceded it were heavily edited and are never aired as reruns.
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How to start your own comedy YouTube channel
Picture it. The date: Spring, 2015. The challenge: Fresh off a firing, I told myself to do something I enjoyed, even if it was not for money. The result: I launched “Stay Golden,” a YouTube channel of weekly original videos inspired by The Golden Girls. We’re talking mashups, interviews, rankings, lists and original scripted comedy (and more).
In the three years since that first video, I’ve produced over 90 videos, gained over 9,200 subscribers, started turning a profit, became a certified YouTube content creator, branched out to hosting Golden Girls Bingo in NYC, and got paying creative work. All of this came out of the channel that I still run today.
YouTube is a valuable platform for comedians at every stage in their career and should be in your creative arsenal. From showcasing your gigs to making your own content, YouTube will be a spotlight on all things you! With no money down, I’m going to give you the inside scoop on how to launch your channel in an hour or less. These are the basics to get rolling on YouTube.
What kind of channel do you want to be?: YouTube channels, like movies, tend to fall into categories. Stay Golden is a combination of comedy, entertainment, and vlogging inspired by the show. I make videos ranking every episode, mashups where “The Golden Girls” meet shows like “Game of Thrones,” and one epic five-hour loop of Dorothy Zbornak screaming “Condoms, Rose!”
The idea of a channel is to showcase your funny, your way. You could do comedic monologues, write and star in sketches on trending topics, develop a full-on web series based on your own life, or use the channel to upload videos of your live performances. And there’s so much more!
You can be one of these things or all of these things. The key here is to have a clear vision, at launch, of what you want to do that makes you feel confident and excited for your new channel.
Setting up your channel: We can get this done in under five minutes.
- Already have a gmail account? Congratulations, you are 50% done with this part already. Log into YouTube using your gmail address. Visit your account settings to change the name of your channel.
- Don’t have a gmail, or want to make a new one for your channel? Go to YouTube.com and click “create new account.” Fill out all required information. Your email is not your channel name; the “first and last” name fields make up your YouTube handle.
The key here is your channel name as a part of the setup. If the channel is about you, whether it is vlogs or videos of performances, consider making it your name. If it is sketches, scripted shows, or other comedy, make it your show’s name. Pro tip: Be sure to search the name in YouTube first to see if its already in use. If you need to change it, you can do this anytime in Google+.
Channel art: These will be the first two images viewers associate with your channel. There is your banner and thumbnail. Think of these two items as your visual business card. They work together to tell the story of you and your channel.
- Thumbnail: Also known as your logo. When thinking about your channel, what is the image that comes to mind? “Stay Golden” uses our name and a picture of a slice of cheesecake. If the channel is all your stand-up material, use your face as the thumbnail.
- Banner: I talk about Golden Girls all day. My banner is their faces with information about my show. Banners are larger than thumbnails and take up the top of the channel page. Use bold colors and uncluttered images to catch viewer’s eyes. Relate it to what you do. And keep it simple. If your comedy is all about kittens, don’t put your dogs in there too. It doesn’t make sense.
Remember more than half of viewers watch YouTube on their phone. Your art needs to be clear enough to look good on smaller devices. Pro tip: You can use free services like canva.com or snappa.com to make these graphics in a snap. They come with drag-and-drop templates, fonts, and styles.
Uploading your videos: Whether it is original content or a recording from your last five-minute standup set, the process is the same. After clicking the camera icon in the top right corner to upload your video and hit these four hot spots:
- Video title: You have to call it something. No video will ever get published on YouTube without one. Titles range from the silly to the straightforward. I like to number my videos so viewers know there are more out there to watch. Pro tip: Keep titles under 70 characters so they show up in searches without getting cut off.
- Description: This is your area to chat it up! Tell people what the video is about. Plaster it with all your social media links and your website; tell people where they can find your next show.
- Tags: These are search keywords related to this video and your channel. They help you show up in searches. Fun Fact: Don’t add too many tags a single video. If a video has more than 15 hashtags, it may get automatically left out or searches. We don’t want that.
- End screens: People are loving your videos. Laughing it up. Wanting more! Use end screens to give them what they want: More of your awesome content! End screens link directly to your other videos and encourage viewers to subscribe.
Promotion: Launching a channel will expose you to a brand-new audience you might not otherwise be in front of. To broaden your exposure, you should promote your channel across other social media platforms. Share your links on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (if you’re on them). Don’t overlook other options like Tumblr, Buzzfeed, and Reddit. For example, I post every new video in the Golden Girls subreddit and get tons of views. Pro tip: Remind people to subscribe to your channel whenever you link to it.
Why YouTube is important: Comedy is a hustle. I am constantly submitting to shows, pitching producers and trying to get writing published. Let’s be real. It can often leave you feel lonely, stranded, and rejected.
With Stay Golden, I don’t have to wait for acceptance. If I have an idea, I make it. YouTube means creating without permission. You don’t have to be booked to tell jokes or commissioned for a sketch. You set up a camera or your phone, do your thing, upload it, and make your own audience. You take control and power of your voice by making your own opportunities.
Stay Golden has over 1 million views, 99% coming from total strangers. I think about the shows where I’ve performed for an audience of nine people or how hard it can be to get friends to come out for a show on Tuesday at 11 pm. YouTube breaks down the barriers of time, location, and space.
COURTNEY ANTONIOLI is a performer and storyteller who She produces Stay Golden, a YouTube channel of original content inspired by The Golden Girls. @stolafprod
Advice for comedianscomedianscomedyCourtney AntonioliGolden Girlshow toStay GoldenwebseriesYoutube channelYoutube series