Top 10 “Pang-Matalino Lang” Pinoy Comedians

Our local comedy industry is a melting pot of talents. The country has so many comedians in its different genre of comedy. We have slapstick comedians, political humorists, satirists, stand-up artists, sitcom, sketch, gag and game and variety show stars, funny radio personalities, theater performers, internet stars, impersonators and amateur comedians.

Most of the people appreciate mainstream acts of Vice Ganda, Eat Bulaga’s Jose and Wally or the comedians from TV5’s ‘Tropa Mo Ko, Nice ‘Di Ba?’ among others. The brands of comedy most Filipinos want are the following:

  • Slapstick – Most people still want to watch Vic Sotto hitting Jose Manalo with a newspaper; or, Ai-Ai de las Alas catching a bomb that would explode right in front of her face. Filipinos really love to laugh at people who are hurt or in trouble.
  • Situational Comedy (Sitcom) – The sitcom era in the country already died down. Some of the sitcoms today are GMA’s Vampire ang Daddy Ko and ABS-CBN’s Home Sweetie Home. People still love this kind of comedy even if, let’s accept it, the acts are not funny at all. Sometimes non-comedians are casted on these shows—the value of the act is sacrificed just to gain a fan base.
  • Bar Humor – This type of comedy just recently reached the mainstream media from comedy bars. Toilet humors, green jokes and somehow offensive punch lines already reached film and television. The most famous comedian of this brand is Vice Ganda. This type of comedy is popular because Filipinos really want to make fun of other people and their situation.

Only a minority of Filipinos appreciate those types of comedy that are critical and as what Brod Pete (see below) says, “Pang-matalino lang.” Filipinos really don’t wanna think at all when they watch something. They just want to laugh and, that’s it. Political humor, satire, improvisations and funny social commentaries are not a hit to majority of the population simply because majority of the people are “hindi matalino”, “mangmang” or “walang paki sa paligid.” And that’s the horrible truth.

In no particular order, here are the Top 10 “Pang-Matalino Lang” Pinoy Comedians

Jon Santos

– Is a famous impersonator and stand-up comedian in the country. He’s not like Vice Ganda who would always poke fun on other people. Oftentimes, his acts are about what’s happening in our country. He’s a satirist and he really takes comedy as an art. Some of his famous characters are Kuring, Ate Vi and Sen. Meeryam. If you’re aware of what’s happening in your country and if you’re “matalino”, you would definitely love Jon Santos’ jabs.

Nanette Inventor

– Nanette is another leading impersonators and satirist in the country. Her character Donya Buding made her famous and she still continues to put smiles on our faces with her new characters like Nanet Nafoolish and Vagigi Reyes. One would think that old comedians are outdated already but remember, “Old school is cool”.

Willie Nepomuceno

– Willie Nep is considered as the best impersonator in the country. He can impersonate our past presidents like FVR, Marcos, Erap and PNoy. He’s also famous in impersonating FPJ and Dolphy. I first saw him in one of the first comedy shows that I’ve watched, Ispup (I love this show even if I’m still a kid during its airing.) I love how he parodies our politicians, take a jab on what they are doing wrong and let the people realize that aside from laughing on our situation, seriously, we need to do something relevant to change this country.

Jun Urbano aka Mr. Shooli

– Mr. Shooli is Jun Urbano’s most famous character. Mr. Shooli is a Mongolian living in the country and often seen on television or films commenting about the Philippines, its government, its society and its people. I’ve watched his News Café interview and there I saw that for him, comedy is a tool not only to share information but to empower the people. I’ve also watched his satire film, Juan Tamad at Mr. Shooli: Mongolian Barbecue, targeting the weak political system and governance in this country. The film was shown on 1991 but the problems it presented are still bugging the nation up to this day. Jun Urbano is a comedian with an advocacy, indeed.

Leo Martinez

– Leo Martinez is Jun Urbano’s close friend. They have the same advocacy—that is to make the people involved in what’s happening in our country. In fact, I saw him and Jun Urbano attend the Million People March back in August 2013. He’s also part of the film mentioned above. Leo is famous for his Batangueno accent when he acts and is also known for taking a jab on showbiz personalities entering politics. Together with Jun, they oppose celebrities using their fame just to garner votes. Ala eh!

Arvin “Tado” Jimenez

– Tado’s market are young professionals and a few college students. He is a black humorist and observational comedian. Oftentimes, he would joke about his experiences during his childhood, college life, his body or any of his experiences that were funny. The thing with his jokes is that it has touches of reality. While listening to his radio show with Ramon Bautista and Angel Rivero, BrewRATS,  I heard him joke about the poor lifestyle in his province, the people there being jobless and prone to vices. He made fun of the situation yet made me think for a while, is that even a joke? Yes or no. In a country like this, dissecting jokes from the reality is a little tricky. Rest in Peace Tado!

Isko “Brod Pete” Salvador

Brod Pete is famous for his “pang-matalino lang” jokes. He is the brains behind the famous Ang Bagong Dating Doon where he would answer any questions through his witty antics. Though he’s a mainstream comedian, his jokes are still different from others in the industry. His brand of comedy ranges from simple word puns to jokes that need a little thinking. Alien!

Tessie Tomas

– She’s the female version of Willie Nep. She’s the country’s leading female impersonator. Her famous character is Meldita. I’ve watched some of her acts and it was really funny because she knows how to play with her voice, her facial expressions are epic and of course, her jokes are funny and intelligent.

Gabe Mercado ­­

— This comedian is famous because of his Yakult commercial. He also appears on films and televisions on minor roles. But most of us don’t know that he’s a talented theater actor. In fact, he’s the one who introduced improvisation in the country through SPIT Manila. I’ve watched one of his interviews on why he’s doing improv. He said that more than making the audience happy, he wants them to be involved in the act. With improvisation, you’re making the comedy interactive resulting to an even happier audience.

Professional Heckler

Professional Heckler is an award-winning humor blog in the country that tackles politics and social issues. You know, politics here in our country is really humorous. Maybe I should not explain why this ‘comedian’ is funny. Read his blog instead. He really knows how to tickle the minds of his readers. Thanks to our best comedians ever—our politicians.


3 thoughts on “Top 10 “Pang-Matalino Lang” Pinoy Comedians

  1. A great article, it flatters me yet unfortunately saddens me too. I happen to be a comedy writer and we hardly get any credit for our work. More often than not, the comic performers take the credit for the laughs. It really goes that way, I guess. Anyway, I wrote for several of these comedians/diennes- Nanette I., Mr. Shooli, Tongressman Manhik-Manaog , Willy Nep, Tessie T. ; while Brod Pete, Jon Santos, +Tado J. are colleagues ; Gabe M. was my student in school theater & comedy workshops; then I met in a TV production meeting ‘The Professional Heckler”
    — and the reason why they can hack the many comedic twists and turns required by the script and director is because in the first place, ‘ matatalino sila at malamang ay maraming kulubot ang utak’ ( words of Mitch Valdez, who to my standards is the best of the lot but didn’t make the list. ). Again, I appreciate the article… it gave me a smile.

    • Thank you, Sir and thank you for your work. There are many more artists who didn’t make it in this list. We need more people like you, Sir, who make comedy not just a petty thing but an art with lots of substance. Thank you again, Sir for noticing this article. The honor is mine. 🙂

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