This year’s Funny Women Awards are being held next week, celebrating the fastest-rising female voices in the worlds of stand-up and comedy.
To mark the forthcoming occasion, and International Women’s Day 2018, we asked some of this year’s nominees which funny women on our screens they most admire, and look up to.
Maisie Adam on Daisy May Cooper
The 24-year-old Assistant Curator for festivals and events, aged 24, originally from Yorkshire but now Brighton-based, is a big fan of Daisy May Cooper, who – along with her brother Charlie – writes and stars in BBC hit This Country.
“I think it’s one of the best sitcoms we’ve had in ages, and her character Kerry is so endearingly awful, it’s sheer brilliance to watch. Not only is she a brilliant performer as Kerry, but her writing is also a winning factor. This Country is hilarious because it actually taps into something bleak and tragic, and somehow makes it funny – and not in a way that we feel bad as the audience for laughing.
“It reminds me of Ricky Gervais’ work, where the characters and situations are so awful that all you can do is laugh. It’s very clever stuff.”
Amy Mason on Daisy May Cooper
A novelist and theatremaker who now lives in London, Mason is also a fan of Cooper’s screen persona.
“I come from Poole, in Dorset, and lived in Bristol for years, and really identify with their depiction of rural West Country life.
“The show is really dark in places, but so sweet too. The stuff about Kerry and her dad is hilarious but totally heart-breaking at the same time. I can’t wait to see what she does next.”
Ashlee Bentley on Roisin Conaty
The Dublin Sales Assistant and Cashier turned stand-up, points to GameFace’s Roisin Conaty as an inspiration.
“I love Roisin Conaty and I also hate her – because I’m an aggressive snort-laugher and she make me snort uncontrollably.
“GameFace was a game changer for me. Her character is a perfectly unperfect, loveable mess and she takes you on this road trip of laughter and emotion and I love that. I love it when flawless writing makes you feel like you are connected to this character and you care what happens. It’s just perfect and she is just perfect.”
Jodie Mitchell on Desiree Burch
The freelance theatre programmer from Cambridge, who sometimes takes to the stage as “drag-king, John Travulva, the queer, Glaswegian macho-man of everyone’s dreams”, has a lot to say about Desiree Burch – the winner of Funny Women’s Stage Award in 2015.
“She’s hilarious as a guest on panel shows and one of my favourite stand-up comedians, but I particularly love her for every time she pops up as a ‘correspondent’ on The Mash Report. Desiree is espically funny. More than that, she’s funny whilst taking down anything from men’s rights activists, to Donald Trump.
“And it’s always hilarious in a completely new way even though those two problems have lots in common. That’s true comedy genius. What’s not to love?”
Thanyia Moore on Whoopi Goldberg
The 35-year-old from South East London looks up to the Hollywood star, who is also a panelist on US talk show The View.
“Not only is Whoopi Goldberg the funniest lady on TV right now, to me she is one of the funniest ladies on the planet.
“From her refreshingly honest delivery which is always sprinkled with a touch of insult, to her outrageously smart content, I never get bored of this educating artist.”
Chloe Petts on Desiree Burch
The outreach worker from Sittingbourne, Kent, now based in London, is another fan of Burch.
“She is making incredible inroads to becoming a household name in the UK, following appearances on Live at the Apollo, QI and Have I Got News For You to name but a few.
“She’s, most importantly, really really funny and has a relentless energy that pervades all her work. Her delivery is natural and conversational in a heightened way with excellent observational punchlines. She’s also a lovely lady and I’m so pleased to watch her continuing to thrive.”
Lily Phillips on Katherine Ryan
Despite it being a “tough one”, the charity workshop facilitator hails Ryan as the funniest woman on TV.
“I’ve seen so much of her on TV recently, in a variety of different shows, from Mock the Week to Your Face or Mine, and she’s nailing them all. She’s just so friggin funny with her slick unapologetic punchlines. Also she lives down the road from me, and maybe she’ll read this and become my life mentor.”
Susan Riddell on the Derry Girls cast
Writer and comedian Susan, from Glasgow, has been glued to Channel 4 sitcom Derry Girls – and admiring of its ensemble.
“It goes without saying that the four main girls were great, but what really stood out was the supporting cast, in particular the nun Sister Michael played by Siobhan McSweeney. I loved her performance, really subtle but brilliant acting – the hardest kind to pull off.
“I also loved Jenny Jones – the wee goody two shoes with the spiteful streak played by Leah O’Rourke. I think when you love the minor characters in a sitcom as much as the main ones it’s a sign of great writing and a hit show. It reminds me of Still Game in that way.”
Megan Shandley on Jennifer Lawrence
The Edinburgh actress (and hobbying balloon modeler) says Hollywood actress Lawrence is making her laugh a lot at the moment.
“Every interview she does makes me pine for her friendship even more. She was on the Ellen DeGeneres show last week talking about her drunk alter ego called ‘Gail’ who comes out when she drinks rum. There’s photos of her at a premiere trying not to look hammered and she succeeds and ends up looking deranged instead, and this is definitely something I can relate to.
“The way she pursued Meryl Streep over a chair at the Oscars is how I pursue Ubers that don’t belong to me; with much enthusiasm and with a drink still in my hand.”
Louise Young on Katherine Ryan
A bartender in Newcastle, Louise is another big fan of Ryan.
“She’s really exciting to watch. She doesn’t shy away from saying those subversive things that hit the nail on the head, but if you were to say them at work, would get you sacked.
“I also love Gina Yashere, Sara Pascoe and Luisa Omielan who is always hilarious, and at this moment, inspirational. I also found out yesterday that my girlfriend has never watched Broad City. I’m now ridiculously jealous she gets to watch it from scratch…”
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This article originally appeared on our sister site, iNews.