Obviously, those are never completely unbiased articles and I probably forget a lot of amazing French humorist. French love listening to comedy shows: cynicism, play on words and black humour are just some of their favorites. A TV talent show has even been created and is a big hit. If you’d like to watch some of the episodes and understand the concept, “On ne demande qu’a en rire” has a youtube channel.
1- “Le Testament” de Muriel Robin
Muriel Robin has been doing amazing stand-up shows and started to experience success at the end of the 80’s after meeting another notorious French comedian Pierre Palmade. The 90’s and 2000’s are amazing periods of success for her and she takes part to the famous charity show “Les Enfoires” to collect funds to distribute foods and meals to people in need during the winter time.
I also recommend the following sketches: “Le Noir”, “L’addition”, “Le répondeur”, “La solitude”, “La lettre”
2- “La Nage” de Gad Elmaleh
Gad Elmaleh grew up in Marocco then moved to study in Canada and finally moved to France in 1992 to follow its artistic inspiration. His success grew tremendously during the 2000’s and he has been elected “the funniest French man” in 2007.
I would recommend you to also watch: “Le ski”, “Les Marocains”, “Where is Brian?”, “L’agent immobilier”
3- “J’aime pas les garçons” de Florence Foresti
Florence Foresti’s success has been going on for about 10 years. This sketch definitely brought her to light!
Other nice sketches are: “La grossesse”, “Les enfants”
4- “Madame Sarfati” d’Elie Kakou
Elie Kakou has been elected best humorist in 1995. His shows have been known for being high in colors and draw a crown. He unfortunately passed away at the age of 39 in 1999.
5- “Kevina” d’Elie Semoun
Until 1997, very well-known for its humoristic duo with Dieudonne, they moved apart and he started an amazing solo career. Kevina is a character he uses in many other sketches.
6- “Le Keke des plages” de Franck Dubosc
He started with the show “Pour toi, public” whose DVD was one of the best-sellers in France in 2002. Since then success has never fizzled out and its role in the famous movie “Camping” definitely made him stand out with his womanizer-loser kind of attitude.
7- “L’Autostop” de Coluche
Legendary irreverent humour and attitude towards politics and founder of the “Restos du Coeur”, association that support homeless and people in need to face the winter time with food and clothes. He died in a motorcycle crash in 1986 at the age of 41.
8- “Les Chasseurs” des Inconnus
Very popular in the 1990, this trio made of Didier Bourdon, Bernard Campan and Pascal Legitimus had its own TV show.
9- “Papa-Maman-la Bonne et moi” de Robert Lamoureux
Actor, humorist, producer, poet and scenario writer, his main successes occur from the 50’s to the 70’s.
10- “Le licenciement” d’Omar et Fred
They made themselves known thanks to their daily show “Le service apres-ventes des emissions” in between 2002 and 2005. Omar Sy later encountered a lot of success in the movie “Les Intouchables. If you follow the “X-Men” movies, you might have seen him in the latest episode…
Other names you can have a look at: Arnaud Tsamere, Jean-Marie Bigard, Pierre Palmade, Bourvil, Olivier de Benoit, Gaspard Proust, Stephane Guillon, Lafesse, Gerard Dahan, Jamel, Anne Roumanoff, Guy Bedos…