The joke's on them: 10 comedians to watch in 2021

Brian Logan
·2 min read

Kae Kurd

This year sees the biggest tour yet for the British-Kurdish standup, whose political but accessible comedy you may have seen on Live at the Apollo, supporting Mo Gilligan, or on Charlie Brooker’s Death to 2020, which he helped write.

Chloe Fineman

Carole Baskin, Nicole Kidman, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Timothée Chalamet: Chloe Fineman generated big social media love in 2020 with her on-the-pulse, larger-than-life Insta impressions. Already a featured player on SNL, 2021 is hers for the taking.

The Delightful Sausage

They were Comedy award-nominated at the Edinburgh fringe, featured on Harry Hill’s Clubnite and brightened up lockdown with their podcast Tiredness Kills. Now Amy Gledhill and Chris Cantrill’s warped northern double act pilot a sketch show for Radio 2, airing in February.

Maisie Adam

A former winner of prestige talent show So You Think You’re Funny, Harrogate comic Adam follows her maiden standup tour and a clutch of panel show appearances with a new gig as narrator of ITV2’s new dating show, The Cabins.

Elsa Majimbo

Kenyan social media sensation Majimbo, aged only 19, made 2020 her own with a series of videos, lo-fi and high in self-esteem, chomping on crisps and commentating on Covid, among other things. Her star looks likely to rise, irresistibly, in 2021.

Jordan Firstman

His arch Instagram “impressions” have made this screenwriter (credits include Search Party) hot property. Assuming his apology is accepted for some indelicate tweeting nearly a decade ago, this could be his year.

Nabil Abdulrashid

Placing fourth on Britain’s Got Talent last year pitched Anglo-Nigerian Abdulrashid – already a veteran touring comic – into the mainstream. Tabloid outrage at his material on race and religion added a dash of notoriety. In 2021, he embarks on his biggest tour to date.

Jon Pointing

The Plebs star was among the first out of the traps under last March’s lockdown, with his loveable online sitcom Key Worker. This year, the character comic features in Jack Rooke’s Channel 4 comedy Big Boys, based on Rooke’s live shows about his experiences as a university fresher.

Janine Harouni

Last year, her sketch group Muriel’s BBC3 skit She’s Asking for It broke the record for online views. In 2021, the Edinburgh best newcomer nominee joins the cast of Buffering, Love Island narrator Iain Stirling’s “modern-day Friends” sitcom for ITV2.

Nida Manzoor

Her Comedy Blap for Channel 4, Lady Parts – about a female Muslim punk band – was among the most watched ever. This year, writer-director Manzoor (already a veteran of two Doctor Who episodes) is turning the short into a six-part series. Keep your eyes peeled.