Who Is The Funniest Person From Your State?
Think you come from a funny state? Check out this cross-country comedy tour to discover the most hilarious person from your neck of the woods. (Note: We’re going with the states where funny people were born, not necessarily the states they’re most associated with.)
AlabamaHuntsville’s Paula Poundstone is our first winner, beating out fellow comics Brett Butler and Roy Wood Jr.
AlaskaDoes Sarah Palin count? Even if she did, we’d go with Dan Mintz, the actor and comedian who voices Tina Belcher on
ArizonaWhile TV comedy innovator Garry Shandling grew up here, he was born in Illinois. We’ll take sarcastic David Spade over stand-up Robert Schimmel and fellow SNL alum Aidy Bryant.
ArkansasHow about Little Rock’s Matt Besser
CaliforniaIt’s an embarrassment of riches in the Golden State, with contenders Margaret Cho, Gabriel Iglesias, Chris Kattan, Maria Bamford, George Lopez, Laraine Newman, Paul Rodriguez, and Jason Segel. We’ll go with
ColoradoWe love Bob’s Burgers’ Kristen Schaal, but we’re giving the trophy to Denver’s Tim Allen, whose Home Improvement was bigger than you remember. Remembered forever for his iconic work in the Toy Stories.
ConnecticutLots of funny in the Constitution State, home to TV sitcom legend Norman Lear, queen of the rom-coms Meg Ryan, M*A*S*H’s Gary Burghoff, The Honeymooner’s Art Carney, and Family Guy mastermind Seth Macfarlane. We’ll go with Christopher Lloyd, who created two iconic comedy characters --
DelawareFine, whatever, we’ll give it to Wilmington’s Aubrey Plaza.
FloridaFrozen’s Josh Gad and SNL impressionist Darrell Hammond hail from the Sunshine State. But can anyone top Cocoa Beach’s favorite son?
GeorgiaComedy Bang-Bang’s Scott Aukerman and probable redneck Jeff Foxworthy are worthy contenders for the throne, but we have to give the crown to Valdosta’s legendary
HawaiiFunny ladies abound in the Aloha State, including Being the Ricardo’s Nicole Kidman (no kidding, born in Honolulu) and
IdahoMiddleton’s George Kennedy tore it up in the Naked Gun movies.
IllinioisPeoria’s Richard Pryor. Next. (OK, honorable mentions to a murderers’ row of comedy, including Bill Murray, Robin Williams, John and Jim Belushi, John Mulaney, Bob Newhart, Jack Benny, Shelley Berman, Garry Shandling, Dick Van Dyke, Betty White, Bob Odenkirk, Nick Offerman,
IndianaYour runners-up are Mike Epps, Red Skelton, and Midwestern-pale Jim Gaffigan. And your Indiana Comedy King? The pride of Indianapolis and Ball State University, David Letterman.
IowaLots of singles and doubles hitters, including Tom Arnold, Ashton Kutcher, Jerry “The Beaver” Mathers, I Love Lucy’s William Frawley,
KansasOverland Park’s favorite son, Paul Rudd, gets the nod in a surprisingly strong state, winning over Second City improv icon Del Close, Ted Lasso’s Jason Sudeikis, Buster Keaton, Fatty Arbuckle, Modern Family’s Eric Stonestreet, and Cheers’ Kirstie Alley.
KentuckyIt’s White Lotus star
LouisianaEven if she’s mean to her staff, there’s no denying Ellen DeGeneres is funny. She beats out original
MaineSCTV’s Andrea Martin brings home the bacon, with apologies to John Hodgman, Pitch Perfect’s Anna Kendrick, and
MarylandMaryland is an amazing state for straight-up stand-up comics. We’ll go with the acerbic Lewis Black
MassachusettsBuckle up -- the Bay State boasts half of the cast of The Office, including Steve Carell, Mindy Kaling, BJ Novak, and John Krasinski. There are also comedy heavyweights Conan O’Brien, Amy Poehler, Steven Wright, Mike Birbiglia, Bill Burr, Penn Jillette, Rachel Dratch, Denis Leary, Gary Gulman, Pete Holmes, Dane Cook, and disgraced comic Louis C.K. For 2022, we’re crowning Bo Burnham.
MichiganLive from Michigan, it’s Gilda Radner, besting funny folks Lily Tomlin (this was a close one), Sandra Bernhard, Ken Jeong, Dave Coulier, and Byron Allen.
MinnesotaWho else but St. Paul’s Louie Anderson
MississippiWe’ll keep this simple: It’s Tig Notaro.
MissouriRedd Foxx practically invented the comedy record, giving him the honors over fellow comedy pioneer Dick Gregory, the
MontanaMissoula’s Dana Carvey in a landslide!
NebraskaHmmm … Larry the Cable Guy or Johnny Carson?
NevadaFor a state that’s home to comedy haven Las Vegas, the best it can do is Gilligan’s Island’s
New HampshireThe state is your oyster, Sarah Silverman.
New JerseyWhile you can make an argument for Jon Stewart, Jerry Lewis, Janeane Garafalo, Joe Rogan, Chelsea Handler, Richard Lewis, Ernie Kovacs, Artie Lange, Jeff Ross, Joe Piscopo, Bill Maher, or Marc Maron, we’re voting for the double dip of Abbott and Costello, who are both from New Jersey.
New MexicoJay Roach (director of the Austin Powers and
New YorkIllinois, you’ve got some competition, with Jerry Seinfeld, Don Rickles, Woody Allen, Lucille Ball, George Carlin, Rodney Dangerfield, Mae West, Jimmy Fallon, the Marx Brothers, Pete Davidson, Danny Devito, most of the Three Stooges, Kevin James, Colin Jost, Jay Leno, Demetri Martin, Amy Schumer, Joan Rivers, Kate McKinnon, and Adam Sandler vying for the honor of Funniest Person from New York. Your mileage may vary, but we’re taking Eddie Murphy.
North CarolinaWilkesboro’s Zach Galifianakis wins out over Andy Griffith, J.B. Smoove, and Gallagher’s sledgehammer.
North DakotaIn a state heavy with pro athletes but lacking in professional funny people, we’re picking pop culture savant Chuck Klosterman
OhioSuper-solid comedy state, home to Drew “Cleveland Rocks” Carey, Vanessa Bayer, Arsenio Hall, Molly Shannon, Katt Williams, Martin Mull, Father Guido Sarducci, Tim Conway, Phyliss Diller, Nikki Glaser and Danny Thomas. With apologies to generational icons Jonathan Winters and Bob Hope, it comes down to a tussle between family-friendly Kenan Thompson and not-so-family-friendly Dave Chappelle. When we look back,
OklahomaWill Rogers is an all-timer, but since we’re in the 21st century, we’re giving it up for Tulsa’s Bill Hader.
OregonModern Family’s Ty Burrell and Bugs Bunny voice Mel Blanc are in the running, but your winner is
PennsylvaniaTwenty years ago, it’s Bill Cosby. Today, among Michael Keaton, Tim Heidecker, Dennis Miller, Elaine May, Bob Saget, Will Smith, Gillian Jacobs, Anthony Jeselnick, Cheri Oteri, Charles Grodin, Seth Green, David Brenner, and Jeff Goldblum, your Funniest Pennsylvanian is Kevin Hart.
Rhode IslandBreak out two trophies for the directors of Dumb and Dumber and
South CarolinaAziz Ansari, this award was all yours until we found out Chris Rock
South DakotaSioux Falls’ Gail Matthius was in the cast of Saturday Night Live , which is more than anyone else from South Dakota can say.
TennesseeJohnny Knoxville has his charms, Justin Timberlake is an able SNL host, but the funniest guy from Tennessee is SNL’s Chris Parnell .
TexasWaco’s Steve Martin bests a field that includes Jeff Dunham’s puppets, Ron White, Rodney Carrington, Bill Engvall, and the rest of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour.
UtahNo one says Utah Funny like Salt Lake City’s Roseanne Barr.
VermontDamon Wayans Jr. is the only member of the famous comedy family born in Vermont. Congrats!
VirginiaWe love Chesapeake’s Jay Pharoah and Portsmouth’s Wanda Sykes, but Virginia has us feeling kinda Patton Oswalt.
WashingtonYakima sounds like just the kind of place wildman Sam Kinison would hail from.
West VirginiaIt’s hard to imagine a weirder fight than Don Knotts vs. Steve Harvey
WisconsinGene Wilder, MST3K’s Joel Hodgson, and Rick and Morty’s Dan Harmon would contend in other states that weren’t home to Madison’s incomparable Chris Farley.
WyomingCaspar’s Jim J Bullock was a hit on Too Close for Comfort and a sassy stalwart on Hollywood Squares.
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