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Oct 9, 2017
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It's a fact that most Pinoys are naturally funny.

Some of us even take it to extremes, almost always finding something to laugh at even in dire situations. It's actually a boon what with numerous calamities, natural or otherwise, visiting our shores on a regular basis in that, somehow, this God-given talent has made us among most resilient of races.

Unfortunately, most of us take the knack for humor for granted.

Ah, but not these Pinoys.

Taking their comedic skills to higher levels and laughing all the way to the bank in the process, here are some of our kababayans who are making waves in the world of stand-up comedy.


Nonong Ballinan

Now a regular face on ABS-CBN's hit sitcom Home Sweetie Home, Nonong first gained attention among hopefuls featured on It's Showtime's "Funny Juan" segment, where he showed enough talent to warrant a third place finish.

We soon learned Nonong had been at it and for a while now, being also part of Comedy Manila’s open mic shows.

Nonong often makes use of his round physique to gain laughs. His spiels, usually about everyday Pinoy life, are not consistently funny, but kudos to Nonong for going out of his way to tickle the funny bones of his audiences by including a bit of dancing and singing into his repertoire.

Alex Calleja

A veteran of the local stand-up comedy scene, Alex is already considered a legend by some.

To underline how good he is, Alex finished first runner-up in Laugh Factory's "Funniest Person in the World" competition in 2016.

Alex has already earned prominence as a gag writer for ABS-CBN hits like It's Showtime, Goin' Bulilit, and Funny Ka Pare Ko.

He has since branched otu to radio, having guest stints on Magic 89.9's popular radio show Boys Night Out ("Taco Tuesdays").

Alex is quick with his wit and has exemplary timing. His spiels, which like most of his contemporaries are mostly about Pinoy daily life, are comparable to patter popularized in movies and TV by comedic triumvirate Tito, Vic & Joey. But Alex  is an original, always modern and imbuing his act with a brash, special kind of freshness.

Ryan Rems Sarita

Just like Nonong, Ryan Rems gained his popularity through It's Showtime's "Funny Juan" segment, eventually being crowned its first-ever grand winner.

Dubbed the "Rakistang Komikero," Ryan Rems shtick consist mainly of non-sequiturs delivered in a deadpan tone and almost always followed by the catchphrase "All right! Rock 'N Roll to the World."

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Derf Hebrado

Another scene veteran, Derf continues to draw laughs with his so-called "derfisms." You'll only understand it once you actually experience it.

Derf is also known for doing the most absurd impressions including that of a staple wire and a shawarma. Weird but oh so hilarious. 

Mike Unson

Another fast-rising talent in local stand-up comedy, Mike is known for his exceptional ability to mimic almost anybody.

Rex Navarette

Just like Alex, Rex is a veteran of the scene. Unlike Alex, however, Rex has earned a considerable following in the US, where he has been based for years.

He has already released several CDs and continues to tour the world doing one-man shows.

Rex is known for his original characters, many of whom are struggling underdogs. This makes his jokes relatable to many Pinoy expats trying to get by in a foreign land.

James Caraan

James is quite relatable to many, thanks to his affable personality. Many love him for his spiels about social media.

Tim Tayag

Tim is credited for supposedly starting observational stand-up comedy around these parts.

He started his comedy career in the US back in 1997, quickly gaining residence in prestigious clubs such as The Punch Line and Cobb's.

Tim's spiels are mainly about his experiences growing up in the Philippines, living in the US, and traveling the world.

Jo Koy

Real name Joseph Glenn Herbert, Jo Koy hasn't performed around these parts but he has gained considerable following here thanks to social media.

He started his act several years ago in clubs across Las Vegas. His big break came in 2005, when he was featured on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno.

He has gone on to do his own shows, the most recent of which is Jo Koy: Live from Seattle aired as a Netflix Original on March this year.

Just like Rex and Tim, most of Jo Koy's material focuses on his experiences as a Pinoy growing up in America. His most funny skits involve him impersonating his mom.

Red Ollero

Red, who is kind of huge, relies on fat jokes to get his laughs. Not that it is the only topic he could make fun of. Red is quite spontaneous and could crack a joke out of seemingly mundane happenings.

 

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