10 Filipino Stand Up Comedians You MUST SEE in Manila

10 Local Comedians You MUST SEE in Manila 



When In Manila, we love to laugh! And it’s awesome that we have a growing number of very funny stand up comedians that could go head-to-head with the likes of international comedy professionals!

Next time you’re out in the jungles of Manila, try to catch a stand up comedy show with one of these very very funny men! Here’s our list of  “10 Filipino Comedians You MUST SEE in Manila“:



Alex Calleja

Listening to Alex perform stand-up comedy, two things happen for sure: you always laugh and you never forget the first time you hear his jokes. Most people also have the same thought: “Hmmm, why didn’t I think of that?” Let me tell you why, because even if you did think of it, you would have not crafted it into the incredible side-splitting joke that Alex did. He looks at every topic exhaustively until every comedic angle has been squeezed dry. No topic is safe. From the hardships of marriage, to hardships in living in Manila, to Zombies hardships (seriously), he finds what is funny and amplifies it with outrageous act outs and all out delivery. If there is any other penultimate headliner in Manila today, they pale in comparison to Alex Calleja.



Derf Hebrado

A veteran of both standup and improv, Derf continues to amuse audiences with his one liners and his “derfisms”. He is the Filipino version of Stephen Wright except Derf has a full head of hair. Watch his impressions of a staple wire, a Chinese cowboy, and a shawarma and you will see what I mean.



GB Labrador

A lot of GB’s comedy comes from his unique perspective and outlook in life. A friend of his described it best when he said, “GB, you look at the world like a child.” A quick listen to any of GB’s jokes and you agree immediately. His innocence towards every topic is what fuels most of his set-ups, but where he really shines is how creative he gets with the punchlines. Truly, his jokes are the ones where you never see the Joke coming. But what keeps people coming back for more from Mr. Labrador is his conversational style in delivery. Listening to him feels like you are talking to an old friend, sharing an inside joke that only you and him understand. And that connection is why he will be a force to be reckoned with in the comedy scene for years to come.



Marlon Olivan

This man has the perfect torso of any comedian in the world. With his Chinese-Filipino background, Marlon manages to play both sides of the coin in the Spratley Island dispute. He is one of the few comedians I know who has the balls to really say what he means regardless of the consequences. They don’t make comedians like this anymore.



Victor Anastacio

One way to describe Victor’s comedy is 100% original. It does not feel copied or rehashed or fabricated from some obscure internet meme or comic. Good comics are funny. The great ones are also funny, but they also show you something else: their actual point-of-view. Every topic he gets into feels like you are seeing it from a completely different perspective. Also, The way he seems to also weave self-deprecation into his jokes is a treat in of itself. The trick is to say enough so that the crowd is on your side and roots for you, but not too much that the crowd just ends up feeling sorry or sad for the comic. Victor walks that thin line masterfully, and you are always left wanting more. He is able to keep any audiences attention because he is unique and he writes good jokes. Do you want to know what the future of stand-up comedy in the Philippines looks like? Watch Victor Anastacio and spread the word.



James Caraan

Any comedian worth their salt will tell you one thing for sure: opening for a show sucks. The audience is usually not into it yet, and the opener is sent out to warm up everyone for the rest of the comics. Apparently, James did not get this memo. This could be the reason why he always does well opening. Or middling. Or headlining. Really, any place you put him, he does amazingly well. We have heard audience members actually start laughing hysterically while James was just setting up a joke. His style is very familiar and relatable. His premises are about the struggles of being single; of always losing fights with your significant other; or simply how ridiculous our current social media generation has become. You know what he is talking about as soon as he starts, and he takes you all the way through each great punchline and twist. And while you are still reeling from the last big laugh, he takes you again on some other hilarious premise. The new thing every comic knows for sure should be this: James is scary good. And after you watch him, you will probably do the same.



Mike Unson

Mike has a gift for mimicking people. In fact, he does it so well it’s scary. One of the more experienced comedians in the scene, he always tickles the crowd with his nonchalant way of pointing out how ridiculously stupid people can be.



Red Ollero

Anybody less observant could easily dismiss Red as just another big guy making fat jokes. Don’t get us wrong, he does tell fat jokes. Very funny fat jokes, in fact. But that is a sliver of what he is capable of. What Red does is unique because he brings you in the world of being fat, regardless of what you’re actual weight and waistline is. And he does with every joke. The audience sees the world as Red sees it. Crowds may not necessarily agree with what he is saying, but they laugh hard just the same. He paints these elaborate and exaggerated pictures that make everyone feel like that they are inside his mind as Red imagines it.  The real treat is watching Red respond to spontaneous things happening during his set or just the show in general. The way he improvises jokes is phenomenal to watch. It makes every set he does feel unique and special. That kind of skill set is hard to find, and even harder to develop. This is what makes him feel like a complete package for a stand-up comic. He is able to entertain the crowd and leave a mark on them that makes audience members just want to watch him again and again. A fellow comedian said the best way to describe Red Ollero: “Some people do jokes. Red does comedy”. we could not agree any more.


Ryan Rems Sarita

Ryan Rems is funny. Simple as that. Sure, the first thing anyone notices is that he looks like a junky. But nobody cares right after his first joke. People know exactly what they are getting into as soon as he starts talking. His deliberate style of delivery allows the audience to follow perfectly to every punchline he has. He is also a favourite amongst all the local comedians because he just has this very specific and hilarious take on things. His material on drugs is insightful and well thought of. And in a conservative country like the Philippines, making people laugh on taboo topics is a hard sell. Ryan is able to make it funny and personal. It feels right because the scenarios and emotions he invokes on stage seem genuine, and crowds always relate to seeing actual persons on stage, and not caricatures. But really, trying to describe Ryan Rems comedy style is like trying to describe how a sunset looks to a blind person: you either insult the blind person or just the Sun. Just watch him, then thank us later.



Tim Tayag

The man who started observational point of view standup comedy in the country is still one of the funniest. His jokes range from cute travel stories to very sarcastic and elitist but thought provoking bits. A cross between Ray Romano’s nasal voice and Dave Attel’s lack of decent sensibilities, Timis fun to watch until you get offended then he makes you think. He makes being a standup comedian cool. Follow him on twitter @timtayag.


So what are you waiting for? Catch these comedians When in Manila and get ready to laugh out loud (literally)!


Check out the Facebook pages of the Comedy Cartel and Comedy Manila to see where these funny guys will be performing next! They have various shows all over the country and on different nights of the week. Check their pages to get the latest show schedule:

Comey Cartel – https://www.facebook.com/comedycartel

Comedy Manila – https://www.facebook.com/ComedyManila

Thanks to the Comedy Cartel and Comedy Manila for sharing their insights on the funniest comedians in Manila! 



10 Comedians you need to Look Out for in Manila