20 Comedians You Should and Will Know

Client: Shane Torres - Talent Date: 11-16-2017

In 2013, Vulture assembled a list of 50 comedians we had been hearing about with such frequency that we needed to alert our readers. That was only four years ago, but it seems like it’s been much longer considering the list contained such current household names as Amy Schumer, Kumail Nanjiani, Abbi Jacobson, and Ilana Glazer. You also already know many of the comedians from our 2015 list. But who you likely don’t know, yet, are the comics on this year’s list, which is why you’re here. Thanks for coming.

To compile the list we polled dozens of bookers for stand-up clubs, improv venues, and comedy festivals, as well as development execs from HBO, IFC, Comedy Central, TruTV, TBS, Adult Swim, and a few prominent podcast networks. The result is a list of 20 comedians that represent a consensus of who the industry is talking about. Some are stand-ups, some are sketch performers, some are writers, but you should and will know all of them.

Location: New York
There’s power in having a signature bit. It’s a guiding light. It’s a calling card. And it’s the easiest way to convince your friends to check someone out. Hannibal Buress had “Pickle Juice,” Ron Funches had “F*ck Linda,” and now, Shane Torres has “Guy Fieri,” a joke so good it has actually changed opinions about a man who wears his sunglasses on the back of his head. The success of that joke says a lot about Torres: He approaches every subject with an interesting, low-key optimism. Whether self-deprecating or taking on heavy subjects such as his father’s death, Torres is never cynical, always finding the absurdity in a situation. You can see that point of view on full display on his Comedy Central Stand-Up Presents and debut album, Established 1981, which is easily one of the best of the year.