Thursday, February 19

The Top 10 Funniest Comedy-Types Ever

A spate of tiffs and blowups with fellow flesh and blood's has steered to this - My ten favourite comedians ever in the whole world since time began...

10. Richard Lewis - First brought to my attention through Curb Your Enthusiasm, I met the wonderfully self-abhoring funny man after his appearance on Late Night with Conan O'Brien in New York. He was as neurotic in truth as he is on Curb. Fantastic.

9. Simon Amstell - I grew up watching Amstell's quirky guise presenting on Nickelodeon, and though the likes of Westlife, McFly and Busted did little to grab my heed via their sounds, Popworld every week was simply unmissable. He's also made a stodgy Brit-quiz like Never Mind The Buzzcocks one of the funniest shows on TV.

8. Steve Carell - Excusing his rather questionable choices of movie roles (Get Smart, Evan Almighty), Carell's Michael Scott from the US version of The Office rivals George Costanza and Ari Gold as one of the most laugh-a-minute television characters ever. And not all his film parts are bad, just think Little Miss Sunshine and The 40 Year Old Virgin.

7. John Sullivan - The second of four Brits to feature in my top ten, sure those last few eps of Only Fools And Horses were ignominious to say the least. But it still stands as one of this country's finest products, and is still about as witty and priceless today as it was when it first aired.

6. Larry Charles - He worked his directorial, writing and producing magic on Mad About You, Seinfeld, Entourage, Curb Your Enthusiasm and Borat. And Bill Maher's recent Religulous. He is the reason for the majority of my hysterics. Let's just hope he's behind Bruno.

5. Brad Garrett - Everybody Loves Raymond? More like Everybody Loves Robert. At least for me, Garrett fulfilled the hapless Robert Barone like no other self-deploring Jew could. Picking up an Emmy Award, he declared: "I just hope this award breaks down the door for Jewish people trying to get into show business!" Comedy genius.

4. Ricky Gervais - Along with Stephen Merchant, he is the man behind the greatest television show the United Kingdom has ever created. Though Extras produced disappointing results out of a great idea, and the user-friendly Ghost Town/Night At The Museum has done little for his Hollywood vocation, you just know there's more of the brilliance that spawned Brent to come.

3. Jerry Seinfeld - It was the greatest television show ever made. He was the reason for it. There's really nothing else to say.

2. Sacha Baron Cohen - In the words of HBO Executive VP Quentin Schaffer, "he delivers an obvious satire that exposes people's ignorance and prejudice". Which means not only were Ali G, Borat and the sure-to-be Bruno uproarious, but damn important too.

1. Larry David - The ultimate superhero for every nerdy, insecure, self-conscious soul in the world. And it's almost impossible to fashion up two groundbreaking TV series. But this man has. Life without Seinfeld or Curb? Unthinkable.