There are several well-named comedy tours on the road right now. Trevor Noah’s calling his Back to Abnormal, which works pretty well. John Mulaney went with From Scratch — that’s a good one for the moment. Chelsea Handler came up with Vaccinated and Horny, which is very on brand.
But the top prize goes to Patton Oswalt for the simple, elegant, and genuinely curious Who’s Ready to Laugh? It’s a very good question. Are people prepared to mask up and flash their vax cards at comedy clubs again? The following comedians are betting “yes” and knocking on wood. Check venues for current COVID-19 protocols.
In a rambling, stammering YouTtube video, Gaffigan announced his new tour by admitting he can’t remember any of his jokes and hasn’t stood up for more than 10 minutes in a row in a long, long time. The famously wholesome (and infamously pale) comic has four shows in three days at the Met later this month, so he better bring a stool. (Through Sept. 19, $39-$129, The Met, 858 N. Broad St., 215-309-0112, themetphilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Siddiq honed his act in prison and built himself a stand-up career on the outside. You better believe the dude’s got some stories. (Sept. 23-25, $30-$40, Punch Line, 33 E. Laurel St., 215-606-6555, punchlinephilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Assuming PhilaMOCA clears its latest round of L&I obstacles, head down there later this month for a rare East Coast performance by the quirky L.A. comedian/podcaster. (Sept. 26, 7:30 p.m., $15, PhilaMOCA, 531 N. 12th St., 267-519-9651, philamoca.org) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Whose Live Anyway?
The apparently unkillable improv comedy show Whose Line Is It Anyway? starts its 18th season (and 10th on CW) on Oct. 9. The current cast — Ryan Stiles, Greg Proops, Jeff B. Davis, and Joel Murray — are out on tour trying to turn audience suggestions into 90 minutes of jokes. (Sept. 30, 6:30 p.m., $29.50-$75, Keswick Theatre, 291 N. Keswick Ave., Glenside, 215-572-7650, keswicktheatre.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
The affable SNL writer turned comedy superstar has been through some things since the last time he played Philadelphia (namely divorce and drug rehab). Mulaney will get into all that when his new show, From Scratch, sets up shop at the Academy of Music in October. (Oct. 1-12, $49-$89, Academy of Music, 240 S. Broad St., 215-893-1999, kimmelculturalcampus.org) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Even when he’s not performing one of his funny/poignant one-man shows, sleepy and sleep-deprived New York comic Birbiglia delivers his punchlines like a seasoned storyteller. Which he is. (Oct. 2, 7 p.m., $50, Merriam Theater, 250 S. Broad St., 215-893-1999, kimmelculturalcampus.org) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Margaret Cho has done it all — sitcoms, movies, Dancing With the Stars, The Masked Singer, fashion, podcasting — but she was a boundary-pushing stand-up from day one. (Oct. 7-9, $30-$40, Helium, 2031 Sansom St., 215-496-9001, philadelphia.heliumcomedy.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Given Oswalt’s diverse portfolio — the man can been seen and/or heard in everything from Ratatouille to A.P. Bio, Justified to The Goldbergs — there’s a good chance somebody reading this doesn’t know he’s also a hilarious and dorky stand-up comedian. Look him up. He’s one of the best in the biz. (Oct. 9, 7 p.m., $39-$75, The Met, 858 N. Broad St., 215-309-0112, themetphilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Technically this is a stop on a book tour, not a comedy show, but it’s a sure bet you’ll laugh. Before Jamie Foxx was an Oscar-winning actor or published author, he was a stand-up comic and a star on iconic ‘90s sketch show In Living Color. A signed copy of his funny, touching new memoir Act Like You Got Some Sense is included with the price of the ticket. (Oct. 15, 8 p.m., $49-$79, The Met, 858 N. Broad St., 215-309-0112, themetphilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
The Daily Show host kept the show daily by recording in his Hell’s Kitchen apartment and conducting his interviews via Zoom. But now some fans are wondering whether he’s got an exit strategy in the works, as the South African-born comedian just bought a big old mansion in L.A. and started a months-long hiatus. (Oct. 16, 6:30 p.m., $39.50-$125, Wells Fargo Center, 3601 S. Broad St., 215-336-3600, wellsfargocenterphilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Stanhope may be the last of the great cynical comics — a hostile, world-weary, chain-smoking, gnarled-up ball of hate whose only job is to make you laugh uncomfortably at how messed up life is. (Oct. 18-20, 7:15 p.m., $45-$55, Helium, 2031 Sansom St., 215-496-9001, philadelphia.heliumcomedy.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
The Malaysian-born comedian has been a Daily Show correspondent since 2015, but he’s also landed a bunch of acting roles in big movies like Crazy Rich Asians, Godzilla vs. Kong and the MCU’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. (Oct. 29, 7:30 p.m., $35, Fillmore Philly, 29 E. Allen St., 215-309-0150, thefillmorephilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
The comedian/actor/podcaster (and UPenn alum!) is known for her hilariously cutting observations about love, sex, and society. (Nov. 6, 9 p.m., $29-$39, Borgata, 1 Borgata Way, Atlantic City, 609-317-1000, borgata.mgmresorts.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Though it’s been awhile since she won Season 6 of Last Comic Standing (not to mention the Myspace So You Think You’re Funny contest), NYC comedian Iliza Shlesinger is still as charming and excitable as ever. Between her stand-up specials and the movie Good on Paper (which she wrote and starred in), she’s all over Netflix. (Nov. 13, 7 p.m., $39-$79, The Met, 858 N. Broad St., 215-309-0112, themetphilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
The Jerky Boys
The Queens bros who first rose to prominence by crank calling small business owners in the ‘90s are back on tour. Is it still funny to address strangers as “tough guy” and “nickel nips?” Guess we’ll find out. (Nov. 21, 8 p.m., $27.50-$75, Fillmore Philly, 29 E. Allen St., 215-309-0150, thefillmorephilly.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
Though she’s known for dancing on the razor’s edge of good taste, the Jersey-born stand-up and frequent talk show guest has only two public apologies listed on her Wikipedia page. Impressive. (Nov. 26, 8 p.m., $48-$96, Borgata, 1 Borgata Way, Atlantic City, 609-317-1000, borgata.mgmresorts.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
The Mad TV alum is still out there doing deranged impressions of sports figures, politicians, and actors. (Dec. 3, 8 p.m., $39-$59, Hard Rock Atlantic City, 1000 Boardwalk, Atlantic City, 609-449-1000, hardrockhotelatlanticcity.com) 🎟️ Buy tickets
» READ MORE: Find more in our complete fall arts guide