17. Amy Schumer
I feel somewhat ashamed that I had never heard of Schumer until I saw her on Comedy Central’s Roast of Roseanne earlier this year, but she was undoubtedly one of my favorite parts of the program even though she stood next to more experienced comedy giants on stage. Soon after this roast she had her own stand up special on Comedy Central (Mostly Sex Stuff), and it essentially seems like she tours like hell, gaining fans at each spot. See if she’s coming to a town near you.
16. Amy Sedaris
Amy hasn’t done anything huge this year acting wise other than the occasional guest appearance (The Good Wife, 30 Rock). But when I went holiday shopping this weekend I still saw her amazing books I Like You: Hospitality Under the Influence and Simple Times: Crafts for Poor People on display and they still made me smile, and her simple existence still makes our lives better.
15. Joan Rivers
Always. She is a queen.
14. Rebel Wilson
One of the least-talked-about best parts of Bridesmaids in 2011 was that it introduced American viewers to Rebel Wilson, a success that was followed up this year with her roles in Bachelorette and Pitch Perfect. And while I didn’t actually see either of these movies, I watched her telling Conan O’Brienthat her bling-y gold necklace proclaiming BITCH belonged to her grandma, and that single moment was pretty much all I needed.
13. Rachel Dratch
It’s obviously been a bit of time since her SNL days, but Dratch still belongs on this list as she released her memoir Girl Walks Into a Bar… this year, and in the Age of Funny Ladies Writing Funny Memoirs (Tina Fey, Mindy Kaling, Chelsea Handler), I feel like this one didn’t get the full attention it deserved. So give love to Rachel Dratch. Read her book.
12. Fortune Feimster
Photo courtesy of Fortune Feimster
While Fortune has been making AfterEllen.com readers laugh for years (Brunch With Bridget, Is This Awesome?), it seems she’s finally starting to get wider recognition of her talent. After being a dedicated full time staffer at Chelsea Lately, Feimster is set to write, co-produce, and co-star in a new comedy for ABC called Discounted, about two half-sisters running a furniture store. Count everyone here way in.
11. Aubrey Plaza
The best thing about April Ludgate on Parks and Recreation is that, from what I understand, she essentially plays herself. She continues her effortlessly hip, perfectly deadpan humor off the screen, and I am sort of in love with her but who isn’t? She also starred in the indie success Safety Not Guaranteed this year, and I look forward to watching her in even more roles in years to come.