Which comedians would you recommend I watch?

First off - Great to see somebody getting into comedy! In addition to the names listed below I'd recommend looking at Mark Normand, Joe List, Gary Gulman, Morgan Murphy, Ali Wong, Jerrod Carmichael, Hannibal Burress, Geoff Tate, Margaret Cho, Marina Franklin, Michelle Wolf, Aparna Narncharla, Frankie Boyle, Stewart Lee, Jimmy Carr, Colin Quinn, Tom Segura and Nikki Glaser.

And everybody should listen to the all-time greats: Chris Rock, Dave Chappelle, Richard Pryor, George Carlin, Joan Rivers, Brian Regan, Dave Attell, Steve Martin, Bill Hicks, Eddie Murphy, Bob Newhart, Roseanne Barr, Steven Wright, Mitch Hedberg, Patrice O'Neal and (great comics, terrible people) Woody Allen and Bill Cosby.

But I also have some thoughts about what you said.

Why does the profanity of George Carlin and Bill Burr bother you, but not the profanity of Louis CK or Dylan Moran? You say they "abuse" profanity for easy laughs -- But what does that even mean? I hear this complaint a lot, but saying George Carlin abuses profanity for easy laughs is INSANE to me. Carlin would be my go to example of profanity as a form of art. Carlin and Lenny Bruce were literally arrested for their acts because they had too many curse words. How is that easy? And Carlin displays a love and understanding of language that goes beyond any other comic I've ever seen. If Carlin says "Fuck" in a joke, it's not because he's lazy or cheap, it's because he thought about all the possible words that could go there and he new "fuck" was the right one. Even if you don't think Carlin was funny, the man was fucking brilliant and a great writer.

And what does intelligent comedy even mean? I see this mentality from people new or unfamiliar to comedy sometimes. They think that the smart comedians, the ones that joke about philosophy and politics, are better than the crass comedians that make joke about cum and pussies and assholes. But -- Who cares? Yes, there are hacky comedians that make jokes about their dicks, but there are hacky alt-comics who make shitty jokes about politics and philosophy and their emotions. Listen to Dave Attell tell a dick joke and he turns it into poetry. In Chappelle's second special "For What It's Worth" he makes some of the smartest racial commentary and satire I've ever seen or heard anywhere. But his opening joke is about a homeless guy jacking off on the bus.

All this big dumb rant that takes comedy way to seriously is trying to say is:

There is no smart comedy. There is no dumb comedy. Dirty comics are great. Clean comics are great. Comics that joke about their dicks are great. Comics that joke about their vaginas are great. Comics that joke about politics and race and philosophy and depression and suicide are great. Jokes are great. Laughing is fun.

/r/Standup Thread