In an ideal world, there would be no misogynistic comedy. We could watch endless stand-up specials and raunchy movies without hearing sexist slurs or bad jokes about women belonging in the kitchen. But, alas, that world doesn’t exist. Despite this, there’s still a plethora of women in comedy who are simultaneously combating sexist stereotypes and sending strong feminist messages in their work. Here are nine stand-up specials, television shows, YouTube channels, podcasts, and books that manage to be both feminist and hilarious (who woulda thunk?).
Full Frontal with Samantha Bee
Samantha Bee is a bright light for women in the male-dominated world of late-night. Her weekly late-night satirical comedy series takes a feminist viewpoint on news and politics, as well as issues that are ignored by large media outlets. Bee does everything from criticizing societal issues to conducting investigative field reports, and she does it all while making you roll over laughing. You can tune in to Full Frontal Mondays at 10:30 PM on TBS.
2 Dope Queens
2 Dope Queens, hosted by Phoebe Robinson and Jessica Williams, is the podcast of your wildest dreams. Robinson and Williams are brutally honest about their lives and about topics ranging from sex and romance to racial issues. They also make a point to feature guests who are marginalized in comedy. This podcast will be especially of interest to you if you’re tired of hearing from “butt-hurt white dudes.”
The Mindy Project
The Mindy Project has always been great, but it’s gotten even better as the latest seasons cover Mindy’s life as a single, working mother. The show manages to portray her struggles while also celebrating and embracing her choice to continue working after her son was born. Because, unlike society often thinks, women can have great careers and still be great mothers. You can watch all episodes of The Mindy Project on Hulu.
Akilah Hughes on YouTube
Akilah is a writer and comedian based in New York City. Her YouTube channel, Smoothiefreak, is full of vlogs, sketches, social commentaries, and everything in between. In one of her most recent videos, she hilariously recommends Republicans write in Jar Jar Binks instead of Donald Trump for President. Besides her awesome YouTube channel, she also creates content for Fusion, HelloGiggles, and Refinery29, among others. You can check out more of her work on her website.
Ali Wong: Baby Cobra
Stand-up has long been (and continues to be) a male-dominated sector, so we generally don’t see immense amounts of female stand-up specials. If that’s true, then it must be nearly impossible to see a special performed by a comic who was seven and a half months pregnant at the time of filming. Yeah, she did that. Not only did Wong film the special while pregnant, the majority of her material is open and honest descriptions of modern-day motherhood. She talks about her body during pregnancy with absolutely no shame, which is extremely refreshing and inspiring. You can watch Ali Wong: Baby Cobra on Netflix.
You’ll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein
The New York Times Bestselling memoir by Inside Amy Schumer head writer Jessi Klein, a New York based comedy writer and stand-up comic, is a candid exploration into modern-day womanhood. Topics range from growing up a tomboy to looking for watchable porn. As the title suggests, much of the book covers Klein’s weird, awkward growing pains. I’m sure we can all relate (especially to that hysterical cover photo).
Anna Faris is Unqualified
Anna Faris’s hit podcast is completely worth the hype. Faris invites her celeb friends to come over to chat with her and help her offer advice to callers. Although she deems herself “unqualified,” her tips are always intimate, honest, and, obviously, laugh out loud funny. In between dishing out guidance and conversing with celebs, Faris shares her own life experiences, proving herself to be as down-to-earth and genuine as her heartfelt advice.
Issa Rae’s Insecure
Issa Rae gained a large following of dedicated fans thanks to her web show The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl. Her latest project is a similarly-themed show for HBO titled Insecure, which is a half-hour comedy series about two friends living in L.A. Be sure to tune in and, until then, you can check out Issa’s other work here.
The YouTube holy trinity of Grace Helbig, Mamrie Hart, and Hannah Hart (unrelated) have had immense amounts of success online, in print, and now, in movies. They previously worked together on 2014’s Camp Takota, and their latest film, Dirty 30 (which was co-written Mamrie Hart and Molly Prather), surrounds a woman who feels her life is stuck in a rut as she turns thirty. So, she decides to let her friends throw her a birthday party-turned wild rager. Obviously, insanity ensues. The movie emphasizes the importance, complexity, and hilarity of female friendships. It was just released and can be purchased online here.