A New Reigning Champ in Stand-Up Comedy as Bert Kreischer Takes Home JFL's Top Award
Date Posted:August 2, 2023
In the realm of stand-up comedy, 2023 has been a year of surprises, breakthroughs, and outstanding performances. In the heart of summer, comedy enthusiasts from around the globe congregated at the renowned Just For Laughs (JFL) Comedy Festival in Montreal. It was here, on the world’s biggest comedy stage, that stand-up comic Bert Kreischer was crowned 'Comedian of the Year'. The news ignited spirited conversation and debates amongst fans and critics alike. Yet, when examining Kreischer's career trajectory over the recent months, this win becomes less surprising and instead, appears to be an acknowledgment of his remarkable impact on the industry.
The Humble Beginnings of 'The Machine'
Bert Kreischer, affectionately known by fans as 'The Machine', began his comedy journey at Florida State University, where he was famously profiled by Rolling Stone as the 'top partyer at the top party school in the country'. This early exposure sparked an interest in stand-up comedy, leading to early gigs and appearances that would set the foundation for his eventual meteoric rise.
When it comes to comedy specials, Kreischer's resume is impressive. Over the years, his live comedy shows have evolved into Netflix specials such as ‘Comfortably Dumb’, 'The Machine', 'Hey Big Boy', and the 2023 special ‘Razzle Dazzle’. Each special presents a unique, often hilarious perspective on life, pushing the boundaries of comedic storytelling. The multi-million-dollar blockbuster movie about his life, released in May 2023, is another testament to Kreischer's immense popularity and unique comedic lens.
But Kreischer's influence on the comedy world extends beyond his stand-up performances. He is also renowned for his innovative podcasts such as 'Bertcast' and '2 Bears 1 Cave', which he co-hosts with fellow comedian Tom Segura. These platforms have not only allowed him to connect with fans on a more intimate level but have also provided a springboard for other comedians to gain visibility.
A Year of Unprecedented Achievements
In the past year, Kreischer's tangible accomplishments have been simply astounding. From the 'Fully Loaded Festival' – his own comedy festival attracting dozens of the world’s best comedians, to the 'Tops Off World Tour' – a worldwide tour selling comedy tickets in staggering quantities of 20,000 per night in NBA arenas. These feats and the tremendous impact they've had on the comedy industry make it clear why JFL decided to honor him with the 'Comedian of the Year' title.
The comedian of the year award isn't necessarily about the funniest stand-up comic; it’s about acknowledging the significant achievements and contributions to the comedy industry. While other comedians like Shane Gillis or Dave Chappelle each bring their unique styles and talents to the stage, the award isn't solely about who is the funniest, but who has pushed boundaries, disrupted the industry, and made an undeniable impact.
The Future of Comedy: Bert Kreischer's Continuing Influence
Bert Kreischer’s unconventional journey from college party-animal to world-renowned comedian is a testament to his extraordinary talent, hard work, and dedication to the craft of comedy. His ability to fill arenas with eager fans, his success in hosting comedy festivals, his thriving podcast endeavors, and his consistent growth in stand-up comedy all stand as evidence of his profound influence on the industry.
Bert Kreischer's win as 'Comedian of the Year' at the Just For Laughs Comedy Festival may have surprised a few, but when looked at in context, it is an achievement fitting of his accomplishments. Always pushing the boundaries of what's possible in the stand-up comedy industry, promoting great comedians, and finding new avenues for his craft, Kreischer's influence continues to grow. As the industry looks towards the future of live comedy, one thing is certain: 'The Machine' shows no signs of slowing down. Congratulations to Bert on a remarkable year and an illustrious career...so far. His story is a testament to the unpredictability, joy, and resilience that lies at the heart of stand-up comedy.
Stand-Up Comedian Joe List Shines in the Short Film 'Gut Punch'
Joe List, a household name in the realm of stand-up comedy, recently made a remarkable splash in the world of independent film. The stand-up comic stars in the brand-new comedic short film 'Gut Punch', now available on YouTube, showcasing his multifaceted talents beyond the live comedy scene.
List began his stand-up comedy journey in Boston at a young age. His keen sense of humor and sharp wit quickly set him apart from his peers, leading to performances at comedy clubs across the country and eventually on late-night shows such as "Late Show with David Letterman" and "Conan". List’s talents have also found a home on Netflix, where he released his acclaimed comedy special, 'I Hate Myself'.
Beyond the live comedy stage, List's voice has become familiar to many through his popular podcasts. As co-host of 'Tuesdays with Stories', along with fellow comedian Mark Normand, List offers hilarious insights into his life and experiences in the comedy world. He also hosts 'Mindful Metal Jacket', a podcast that strikes a more serious tone, discussing mental health issues with humor and depth.
List's journey into independent film has been an intriguing expansion of his stand-up comedy career. In 'Fourth of July', a short film directed by comedy legend Louis CK, List exhibited his natural acting ability alongside his comedic skills. It's clear that List's talents translate well to the screen, adding another impressive string to his bow.
Stand-Up Comedy and Independent Short Films: The Cross-Over You Didn't Know You Needed
'Gut Punch', the latest addition to List's filmography, has quickly gained acclaim on YouTube. The 12-minute short film is a comedic gem that features List in a starring role. The acting, storyline, and overall production quality have been lauded by viewers. Created by Jon Ryan Sugimoto, 'Gut Punch' serves as a testament to the breadth of List's talent and his ability to successfully navigate between stand-up comedy and independent film.
Joe List's work in 'Gut Punch' represents not just a new avenue for his talent but also a significant support for independent projects. As the lines between live comedy shows, podcasts, and films continue to blur, comedians like List are expanding the definition of what it means to be a stand-up comic. So, whether you're buying comedy tickets to his live shows or tuning into 'Gut Punch' on YouTube, you're guaranteed a hilarious experience filled with Joe List's unmistakable wit and charm.
Rolling Credits: Who appeared on comedy podcasts this week?
Some of the clips used in this video are from these comedy podcasts:
Hey Babe hosted by Chris Distefano with guest Jared Freid
New(-ish) stand-up comedy specials out recently include:
Dark Pale by Jim Gaffigan on Prime Video
Soup to Nuts by Mark Normand on Netflix
Reality Check by Kevin Hart on Peacock