When it comes to the comedy industry, it is clear men that men have been the face of it for years. When many of us think of our favorite comics, we name men, including the likes of Richard Pryor, Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle. Male comedians have dominated the industry since its inception. And while these men may be great in their own right, women of color are finally breaking through the comedy scene and flourishing to their full potential these days. Just look at Tiffany Haddish or Leslie Jones.
Women of color are creating, producing and hosting along with a number of other great things, and it’s time they get the recognition they deserve.
Keep an eye on the following hilarious ladies, as they are surely about to blow on the comedic scene. Here are 10 women of color in comedy to watch in 2018.
2 Dope Queens
2 Dope Queens is the perfect title for these two incredible women. Phoebe Robinson and Jessica Williams are ultimate best friend goals ! Robinson, a comedian, writer and NY Times best selling author of You Can't Touch My Hair (And Other Things I Still Have to Explain) and Williams comedian, actress and formerly the youngest Daily Show Correspondent ever, continue to leave their mark on the industry. From creating the hilarious yet informative podcast 2 Dope Queens these ladies have since taken their talents to HBO with their very own televised version of 2 Dope Queens. With the common goal of creating a platform for people of color, the LGBTQ community and embracing black culture these women have just gotten started on their road to success.
The two recently opened the show for none other than Oprah Winfrey herself, on her Super Soul Conversations at The Apollo special set to air Feb 27th at 10pm ET on OWN.
Michelle Buteau has been the hidden gem we all needed on our big screens. This comedian, host and performer has been a staple on various VH1 shows for years, such as I Love The Series, Best Week Ever and currently the co-host of Big Morning Buzz Live. With her big personality and unapologetic humor, Buteau is the best friend we’ve always wanted. She’s honest, raw and absolutely hilarious. As a comedian who has toured the nation, Buteau has gained much experience in the industry and continues to thrive as a women of color in comedy. You can see Buteau in her latest show Adulting with Jordan Carlos or catch her on her new podcast Late Night Whenever beginning this April.
“Yo Waddupp Vena E “ ! A common greeting used by the comedian, also the title of her first official song, Vena E rose to stardom on our timelines of Instagram. Whether it be Peanut’s short tempered mother, Sassy Latina giving hair advice or wild Jamaican dancer, Vena E and her many personalities will most certainly keep you entertained throughout the day. Her vibrant personality is evident in everything she does and she continues to break through the music industry with her latest song “Annie”. If you’re ever having a bad day, following @Yesimprettyvee is sure to brighten it. As she continues to charm us with her weekly content, Vena E has also secured another job as one of the newest editions of MTV’s Wild N’ Out.
You may know her as the best friend Molly from HBO’s hit show Insecure but Yvonne Orji is a name you won’t soon forget. The Nigerian-American actress continues to steal our hearts through her work, personality and authenticity. More than a hilarious actress, Orji is a writer, producer and let’s not forget college educated woman. Originally following her parents dream for her to pursue medicine, Orji got a Bachelors degree in Sociology and a Masters degree in Public Health from Georgetown University. Luckily for us, she ultimately chose to follow her passion for comedy instead, which brought her to all of our television screens. Orji has been extremely vocal about her relationship with Christ to which she owes all her success.
As a first generation American with a Caribbean background, Chanelle Graham constantly keeps me entertained with her relatable culture based comedy. With her family of Jamaican and Guyanese descent Graham creates hilarious comedic sketches of what it’s like to be West-Indian living in the U.S. If you’ve ever seen a video of the outspoken and overly confident, Donna Tingdeh then I’m sure you love this comedian and sketch writer as much as I do. With over 100 thousand Instagram followers, Graham continues to create content to make us relate, laugh and even learn about other cultures.
Named Lilly Singh at birth but to her fans she’ll always be known as iiSuperwomanii, is a comedic BOSS. More than just the title of her New York Times best selling book How To Be A Bawse, this woman has created an outstanding brand starting off from youtube. From her hilarious self made youtube videos ranging on a variety of relatable topics, Singh has accumulated over 12 million subscribers since her start in 2010. With all her success in under 10 years, Singh has remained true to her Indian heritage in everything she does and often pays homage in a number of her comedic sketches. As the founder of #GirlLove Singh created an initiative to stop the girl on girl hate and encourage women to support and love one another. Listed as one of Forbes Top Influencers of 2017, Singh’s career is just getting starting and I’m rooting for her every step of the way !
Amanda Seales, formerly known as Amanda Diva is a comedian, actress and radio personality. No overnight success, this woman has been on the grind since her 1994 introduction to tv as a child star for Nickelodeon’s My Brother And Me. Whether you’ve heard her dropping gems on her Small Doses podcast, heard a lyrical rundown on Def Comedy Jam or seen her hosting a number of hilarious shows for the culture, Seales continues to show the industry she will not be boxed in. With over a decade of experience Seales has remained true to her craft and most importantly true to herself, constantly embracing her authentic Grenadian roots; making her just that more lovable. You can catch Seales as the hilarious Tiffany Dubois on the hit HBO series Insecure.
Jasmin Brown is my best friend in my head. The comedian best known as WatchJazzy is definitely one to watch in the comedy industry. The actress, comedian and writer rose to stardom from her occasional and relatable weekly car rants that allowed her to ultimately gain a following of over 660 thousand followers online. The talented actress has a number of characters she’s created and performed from The Ratchet Toya James, The Playboy Termite and hotmess handyman Reggie , who all hold a special place in my heart. The Miami native has recently took her talents to Los Angeles, California where she stars in BET’s 50 Central produced by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson returning in April.
Franchesca Ramsey, the cultural guru best known as Chescaleigh. This writer, comedian and video blogger rose to success from a Youtube video back in 2012. You might remember the controversial yet absolutely hilarious “Sh*t White Girls Say…to Black Girls” video Ramsey produced that instantly went viral with 5 million views in just 5 days. Since her days as portraying white woman on screen, Ramsey has accumulated a quite impressive resume of her own. Ramsey was formerly a contributor and writer for The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore, wrote a book entitled Well That Escalated Quickly Memoirs and Mistakes Of An Accidental Activist, and is now the host of MTV Decoded. With Ramseys comedic sketches, she blatantly tackles everyday controversial issues ranging from race, sex, religion etc and her unapologetic approach is one needed in this generation. Ramsey is a cultural voice that won’t be silenced and I encourage everyone to listen to just what she has to say.
From Canada to Miami to New York and into our lives Jessie Woo has stolen our hearts. The comedian and television personality of Haitian descent creates hilarious videos that we all can learn something from. Whether it be a Creole word when describing someone, how to snatch a man from his main girl or a quick black history lesson, Jessie Woo will not only keep you informed but will have you laughing every second. Having moved to NY less than two years ago to follow her dreams, Woo’s career is finally taking off and I’m sure her future is bright. In my best Jessie Woo accent , “Seester, I’m proud of you ! Cheers”