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The 50 Funniest People Now

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Here they are: The 50 actors, stand-ups, TV hosts, Twitterers, radio personalities, septuagenarians and sports analysts making us laugh the most right now. In making this list, we took the "now" part seriously, and focused on comedians' recent work. That meant excluding some all-time greats who aren’t very active as funnymen (or aren't doing their best work at the moment) in favor of people who are truly killing it out there these days.

By Nick Catucci, Meredith Clark, Jon Dolan, Andy Greene, Joe Gross, Joel Hoard, Halle Kiefer and Jody Rosen

Paul Morigi/WireImage

2

Stephen Colbert

Colbert is so well known for his political humor that his chops as a pure comedian are often overlooked. But he's one of comedy's quickest wits, not to mention an old fashioned physical comedian – a world-class mugger and slapstick artist, donning ridiculous outfits and wolfing down dubious foodstuffs on Colbert Report sketches. As for politics: He sets himself apart not just as a satirist, but as an activist, breaking the fourth wall with ingenious conceptual art stunts – testifying before congress about his brief tenure as a migrant worker, founding his own Super PAC to expose post-Citizens United money-swamped political campaigns, and in his most celebrated coup de theatre, spit-roasting President Bush, and the complacent press corps, in his appearance at the White House Correspondents Dinner in 2006.

louis ck

FX

1

Louis C.K.

In 2013, Louis C.K. is the Great American Comedian: our chubby, schlubby, ginger-haired conscience, id, and jester-in-chief. He's a poet of existential malaise, but his signature standup bit, "Everything is Amazing and Nobody's Happy," extols the beauty of life and the magic of modern technology. He's a devoted single father who quips, hilariously, about child-rape. He's relentlessly politically incorrect, and one of the most politically trenchant comedians going, whose jokes stake out a savagely smart left-of-center perspective on class, race, and American history. He's a crusty old-school stand-up's-stand up and a groundbreaking internet entrepreneur. His TV show is a new kind of high-low pop-art, a little bit Jackie Gleason, a little bit Jean-Luc Godard. He can make you laugh, and cry, just by eating ice cream, a whole pint of it, straight out of the carton, while lying in bed. A funny man who contains multitudes.

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