In the mood for a good podcast? Looking to dip your toes into something new, and have a laugh while doing so? We’ve rounded up the best funny podcasts from around the web that’ll have you cracking up from the word go. From two Irish best friends discussing therapy to seasoned comedy greats in their element, there’s plenty of variety to choose from and topics covered- so pick one and give it a listen.
Alan Partridge: From The Oasthouse
One of Britain’s longest running and most acclaimed comedy institutions, Alan Partridge is a character who’s been in almost every performing format imaginable. Now, he’s continuing his comic odyssey in podcast form. This podcast is available through Audible, and launched in 2020, finding Alan in the world of Covid and changing times. The hapless radio and TV presenter never has his foot far from his mouth, and there’s plenty of comedic cringe in these episodes. Alan gives his thoughts on everything from superheroes to letter openers, in his uniquely awkward way. Those who know him from his other appearances such as I’m Alan Partridge can expect more of his desperate attempts to appear more accomplished than he is, and plenty of references to Bond. Aha!
Listen on: Audible
The Aunty Donna Podcast
Aunty Donna are something of a cult phenomenon. You may not have heard of them, but the Australian comedy troupe have amassed a strong following since their inception in 2011. Having gained traction through the Australian comedy circuit and YouTube, they’ve begun to break out internationally with performances at the Edinburgh Fringe and in North America. Their biggest collaboration to date is their Netflix series Aunty Donna’s Big Ol’ House Of Fun, a sketch show which first released in 2020. In terms of comedy, Aunty Donna is very much absurdist and surreal, with the main troupe (consisting of Mark, Broden and Zach) performing as a number of hilarious characters like “Frogman” and “Funny Mums and Dads”, and the podcast has a very loose improvisational structure. There’s recurring settings, fourth wall breaking and random riffing. Some episodes feature special guests such as Daniel Sloss and Tim Minchin, and the show is a lot of fun. The phrase “weird and wonderful” has never been more apt.
Listen on: Acast
Conan O’Brien Needs A Friend
Conan O’Brien is easily one of America’s most accomplished comedic talents, from writing some of the greatest episodes of The Simpsons to hosting a number of hugely successful late night talk shows. In 2018, the Massachusetts born comedian and his trademark red quiff jumped into the world of podcasting with Conan O’Brien Needs A Friend. The series sees him chatting to a wide range of comedians and actors from showbiz, like Will Ferrell, Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey and Jeff Goldblum. It’s been one of the top podcasts on iTunes since release, and has a more down to Earth feel than his TV talk shows. It’s more of an interview show than written jokes and characters, but thanks to the years of comedy experience under his belt, Conan still brings the laughs as he chats to his guests. There’s even an episode featuring Barack and Michelle Obama, so it’s got the Presidential stamp of approval too.
My Therapist Ghosted Me
The Irish podcasting hit My Therapist Ghosted Me began life after host Joanne McNally’s therapist suddenly decided to start ignoring her attempts at communication, from phone calls to answering the door to even refusing to speak to her after she tracked him down. So, Joanne decided to team up with her friend Vogue Williams to give each other therapy by starting a laid back yet funny podcast and musing on everything in life, making sure that they keep their convos “100% honest-guaranteed.”
Shagged Married Annoyed
Married couple Chris and Rosie Ramsey host this very funny podcast that focuses in on some of the big topics in life, and in particular on relationships, marriage and children, as you might gleam from the title. The pair let it all out in the show, sharing details of what they’ve been beefing about, how they’ve been managing to parent this week and taking questions from the audience. It’s been wildly successful, getting some 100 million downloads and spawning a live tour that’s returning for 2023.
Telling Everybody Everything
Canadian born Katherine Ryan is one of the most popular comics working in the U.K., with two Netflix specials, In Trouble and Glitter Room, as well as the series The Duchess, and appearing on many of the nation’s best loved panels shows. It’s no surprise then that Ryan now also hosts a podcast, Telling Everybody Everything. The show shifts between more serious topics and light hearted funny stories, with plenty of candid chat in between. There’s also phone calls with members of the Ryan family who make guest appearances, some back in Canada. There’s plenty of episodes out so far that are available, so if you’re looking for someone who tells it straight, Katherine Ryan is a good bet.
Queers Gone By
Queers Gone By is a nostalgic podcast hosted by two queer comedians, Caitlin Powell and Kate Butch, in which they look back at their childhoods, and analysing the films, TV shows and even snacks of the past to see if there’s a way of pinpointing “what exactly made them so queer.” Classic UK and US shows like Tracy Beaker, That’s So Raven, Primeval, Chucklevision, Glee and many others. You’ll rediscover plenty of your favourite shows the 90s and 00s that shaped your childhood, as well as having a lot of fun laughing along to the hilarious discussions and anecdotes on the show.
Ever wanted to know about some of the stranger and less discussed parts of the world of Disney? Then look no further than Hidden Mickeys, a podcast dedicated to the strange underbelly of the massive entertainment powerhouse. Hosted by Disney diehards Natalie Palamides and Carrie Poppy, you’ll learn all sorts about some of the most famous (and not) Disney films, as well as the theme parks and other Disney merchandise. Quite often, the show will take a bit of a detour as Natalie and Carrie share their Disney hot takes that will having you quietly nodding along or seething in disagreement. Either way, there’s a lot of fun and intrigue to be found with this podcast. A Hidden Mickey, if you didn’t know, is an image of Mickey (usually just the famous three circles that make up his head) that has been subtly inserted into films, tv shows, theme parks and other Disney media.
James Acaster and Ed Gamble’s food centric podcast is one of the most popular out there, with it often topping the charts on iTunes and Spotify. The premise is simple: each week, a guest appears on the show and is invited to select their dream menu. Of course, it’s not just straight food talk the whole way through, with plenty of fun anecdotes and daft humour throughout. So far, the show’s guests have included a wide array of people like Richard Osmand, Ainsley Harriot, Dynamo, Jess Phillips, Armando Iannucii, Martin Freeman, Dan Akroyd and many others.
The Ricky Gervais Show
The Ricky Gervais Show is a fair bit older than the rest of the podcasts on this list, with its first series beginning in 2001, but it’s possibly the most influential and important podcast of all time. The show is credited with kickstarting the podcast genre, and by 2011 already had over 300 million downloads, and hundreds of hours of content. The original radio series (which has been released in downloadable podcast form) saw hosts Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant muse on life with the growing input of producer Karl Pilkington, who would become integral to the show with his odd views and outlandish stories. The early series are from a different era, with references to Tony Blair, Big Brother and PlayStation 2s, with Gervais and Merchant still in the middle of producing The Office. But it’s still relatable and entertaining today. Ricky provides the rants, Karl provides the ridiculous stories about monkeys, and in between, Steve provides the quick fire wit. The show continued into podcast form in the mid 2000s, and was later adapted into an animated series. As with any comedy produced two decades ago, some of the humour is quite dated in today’s world, but it’s still one of the funniest podcasts that exists and a juggernaut of the format, helping to propel the three hosts to further stardom.
The Mo Gilligan Podcast
Comedian Mo Gilligan has become one of Britain’s most popular comics, with his observational humour and hilarious wit. With shows like The Lateish Show with Mo Gilligan and The Big Narstie Show, he became a master of using social media to promote his comic material. This show sees him chat to a wide range of guests, and if you’re a football fan, you’ll find a lot to like here with the Arsenal supporting host. The biggest guest names include Rio Ferdinand and Davina McCall (who judges The Masked Singer alongside Mo), along with others like Reggie Yates and Nigel Ng, better known as the viral internet sensation Uncle Roger. The show is a feel good podcast with lots of laughs, as well as touching on more serious topics such as fatherhood, religion and racism in football. If you want some comedic relief with one of the country’s best new talents, then get downloading.
2 Dope Queens
Sometimes you can find the the podcasting world is overwhelming, with seemingly endless episodes to catch up on. Well, 2 Dope Queens ran for a total of 49 episodes (plus several bonuses) across two years from 2016-2018, so it’s easy to binge your way through them. That doesn’t mean it’s any less good than other pods though- hosts Jessica Williams (an alum of The Daily Show, which itself has a podcast on this list) and fellow comedian Phoebe Robinson serve up plenty of laughs across the show’s run, in a space designed to give a bigger platform to female, POC and LGBTQ comedians. Taped live from Union Hall in Brooklyn, the show discusses plenty of topics, from race, gender, sex and more. It was also adapted into a series of HBO specials, as well as a live show. It’s finale episode featured an interview with former First Lady Michelle Obama.
The Skewer and The Daily Show: Ears Edition
I’ve combined these two podcasts into one because they both give satirical views on the news and affairs of our current age. The Skewer comes from the mind of Jon Holmes, a stalwart of British satirical comedy, and focuses on the stories of each week with a comedy twist. Johnson, Biden, Starmer and more are given a sharp, well, skewering in this show, and there’s a range of diverse talent that contributes to the gags. Holmes brings a unique way of firing at the politicians of our age, by creating a surreal sound collage that’s designed to be listened to with headphones. It’s a show that utilises the podcast format excellently, and provides a real remix of the news.
The Daily Show: Ears Edition meanwhile is comedy beamed from across the pond in the US. The Daily Show is one of the most acclaimed comedy institutions in American entertainment, with comedian Trevor Noah taking the show to new heights after the long-time host Jon Stewart retired in 2016. The Ears Edition is an audio version of the main TV show, featuring extended interviews and highlights from the faux news programme that reliably cuts through the bullshit of US politics, covering topics like Trump, the Supreme Court and others. Expect plenty of laughs about the upside down rollercoaster of the current American climate. There’s even a meta spin off mini-series Podcast Universe from The Daily Show that parodies podcasting culture itself.
French and Saunders: Titting About
One of the most successful double acts in British comedy history, Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders are both undoubtedly comic legends. They’ve a career spanning four decades from their early years in the 80s alternative comedy scene, with both having huge hits outside the double act like The Vicar of Dibley and Absolutely Fabulous. With that enormous body of work behind them, the two decided to reunite for the podcast world with Titting About. The premise of the show is fairly simple, a topic is chosen for each week and is discussed. But given it’s being discussed by French and Saunders, you know it’s going to be very funny. There’s classic comedy topics like school and holidays, as well as more abstract ones like the seven deadly sins. There’s also points where the two look back on their career and early days, reflecting on how they’ve changed and grown. If you’re a fan of French and Saunders, listen. If you’re a fan of comedy, listen. If you’re a fan of laughing, listen. You won’t regret it.
Listen on: Audible
You’re Dead To Me
Here’s a comedy podcast that’s educational as well as humorous. This show sees historian Greg Jenner discuss history, and help people to learn more about the past. In each episode, he teams up with some of the best names in comedy to navigate and question periods such as the medieval era, Ancient Egypt, Prohibition and even the history of ice cream. It describes itself as “the history podcast for people who don’t like history.” There’s plenty of comedic fun alongside some great insight into historical figures, with guest historians featuring alongside the comics. It’s like Horrible Histories in podcast form.
Listen on: BBC Sounds