You should laugh more than you do anything else in a day (well not breathe because you’ll probably die, but you get my point). Comedy and humour should be celebrated in every which way. Simple things can make me laugh like how Americans say ‘aluminium’ or a humble ‘that’s what she said’ joke but the female comedians in the UK today should have their names shouted from the rooftops.
When people ask ‘why are women not funny?’ it makes me want to hurl something heavy over their head and point them to the nearest comedy circuit, where some of the most hysterical entertaining women around are performing. In England, a 2010 poll found that only 6 out of the 100 greatest stand-ups were women. As we get into the middle of the 2012 we need more shows, gigs and festivals celebrating what it is to be a funny fabulous female.
My favourite stand up comic Rosie Wilby (winner of the best lesbian comedienne in the borough of Suffolk don’t you know) who I have followed for years has me in rolled over stitches all of the time. Her spoof lecture on the ‘Science of Sex’ rocked the Edinburgh Fringe and I fell in love with her charm and geeky-but-gorgeous nature. She reels out gag after gag about one night stands, the use of epileptic smilies on texts and whether depression could count as a disability. “Could you get a car sticker for it, with a sad face, and a speech bubble that reads: ‘Could possibly walk further with my shopping, may kill someone’?”,’
Sarah Archer is also comically brilliant. When you hear the stories of her growing up in an Irish Catholic household and her grudges on girls she went to school with you’ll be reminded of your own childhood embarrassments. The impression of her Dad is genius and I found myself doing that twisted face of cringe as she talked. It’s relatable and a laugh-your-socks-and-shoes-off hilarious act.
She narrowly missed out on winning in the BBC New Comedy awards, getting beaten by Rhod Gilbert. Now I am never normally one to slate someone from my own country, but Archer should have beat his annoying Welsh arse hands frigging down. The men seem to always be heralded the funny ones while the women are left in the dark, trying to get their clever witticisms and rude jokes heard.
Watching the panel shows on television such as Mock the Week or QI it’s very rare to see a lady on one of the teams. Zoey Lyons can have me laughing my head off on these shows when she’s given the chance to speak over the male egos wanting to get their word in. Television seems to be putting all the new male comedy shows out there and yet ignoring the ones that show off the women. Even in a latest review I read of new impressions show VIP, Terry Mynott got all the credit where I, and even my brothers feel that Morganna Robinson makes the show. Yet her impression of Natalie Cassidy, Adele and Martine Mcutchon is swept under the carpet because there’s a man involved in it.
I’m a very big fan of FunnyWomen who are trying to get women’s humour heard. There have been many good comediennes who have gone on to do amazing things. Lara King, last year’s winner has been unstoppable since. She has the opinon that men aren’t funnier at all ‘Just because there are more men doing it, that doesn’t necessarily mean they are better at it. I think they get given the breaks a bit more, and they get given a little bit more slack. I think women are less encouraged and less supported.’
Last year Miranda Hart and Sarah Milican gnawed their way out of the woodwork and stepped up to lead the way. Milican’s jokes are rude but fabulous and she bounced into the comedy spotlight with an amazing routine about what to do with her wedding dress now that she was divorced. Best suggestions were burn it, wear it to first dates or put it on and follow the ex husband around in it.
There’s no need to panic any more when women get on stage and no need for that when-your-sock-heel-is-on- top-of-your-foot uncomfortable feeling either. Gone are the days where women are giggling adoringly at men. The funniest women are up and coming this year and I will be in the front row of as many shows as possibly cheering them on.