Strong language. Raw energy. Top notch humor. Sassy. And of course, one hell of a story. These are all the makings of a gut-busting funny lady. Check out this list of hilarious women known to push the envelope for the sake of good humor.
Note: The language in many of these routines are NSFW!
1. Lawanda Page
Fred Sanford’s arch nemesis was and always will be Aunt Esther. Despite her secondary role on Sanford & Son, Lawanda Page held her own in the stand-up world. Her routine was a bit too explicit for her time, and even this list.
2. Quinta B.
BuzzFeed’s resident intelligent home girl. Watching her videos is like eating potato chips, you can’t stop at just one.
3. Erika Alexander
Imagine Living Single without Maxine Shaw, attorney-at-law. You can’t. Erika Alexander pulled off the role of maneater like no other.
4. Debra Wilson
This moment in Black history brought to you by Mad TV (not really). Debra Wilson is known as the first woman and comedian to make a caricature out of Beyoncé on a sketch show. The accuracy, dear friends. The accuracy.
1/4 of The Queens of Comedy. You have not lived unless you see her live stand-up in person.
6. Wanda Sykes
Every great female comedian must be 100% comfortable in both their sexuality and femininity. Wanda Sykes exceeds the requirements.
7. Issa Rae
Issa is a webisode OG. Don’t let the title, The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl fool you. It’s truly the hippest trip in America. (Wrong show, but you know what I mean)
8. Michelle Buteau
Her outlook on freckles: well placed skin cancer.
9. Nicole Byer
This Girl Code alum is long overdue for her own series.
10. Leslie Jones
Leslie’s rough around the edges schtick is what granted her access to SNL and the first-ever female Ghostbusters cast.
11. Maya Rudolph
This SNL is never afraid to make fun of herself, Rachel Dolezal or Beyoncé.
After years of running on the “skinny bitches” platform, Mo’Nique successfully campaigned for the equal representation of plus sized women in Hollywood. This Oscar winner and Queen of Comedy is one of the funniest women alive.
13. Skye Towsend
Don’t call her Robert Townsend’s daugther, Skye is much more than that. Making a name for herself with hilarious Vines and her musical talents, she is far from her father’s shadow.
14. Jenifer Lewis
“Is there another bad bitch in this house?”
15. Tichina Arnold
“Beadie Bead”. Enough said.
16. Jackée Harry & her tweets
If you’re one of the brothers or sisters hating on Beyoncé’s unabashedly black song, please take note of your Stacy Dash tendencies.
— Jackée Harry (@JackeeHarry) February 7, 2016
Take back the Emmy. I don’t want to be an actress. I want HER job. pic.twitter.com/1H9V0nvbGq
— Jackée Harry (@JackeeHarry) December 24, 2015
While she’s a funny lady on-screen, her tweets are shady boots supreme.
17. Loni Love
Loni has always kept it “real”.
As co-host of The Read, Crissle is reality checker extraordinaire.
19. Sherri Shepherd
Sheila, the drunk friend that makes life worth living.
20. Jada Pinkett-Smith
Long before her A-list status alongside hubby Will Smith, Jada’s pint sized antics were known to steal scenes.
Just downright foul and funny.
22. Jay’La Milan
Follow her on Instagram, you will laugh for days.
23. Sheryl Underwood
From Def Comedy Jam to The Talk, Sheryl Underwood put in work to make a name for herself…and her pocketbook.
24. Adele Givens
She’ll make you laugh, cry, and feel encouraged.
Bonus: Marsai Martin
Newcomer Marsai Martin is a few years a head of her time. In a few years, she’ll be in a league of her own. Diane for President!