These Comedians Are Shaking Up the Stand-Up Scene

Female comedians are blending progressive politics and social justice into their routines — and pushing the boundaries of mainstream Bay Area stand-up.

“When there are six male comedians, they don’t point out that they’re male. That’s just a comedy show,” added Dobbins, who lives in Oakland. Similarly, when female comics make fun of men, “they get stereotyped as men-bashing. But there’s no equivalent for women-bashers. That’s just comedy,” said Dobbins, who has touched on topics such as reproductive rights, pay equity, and police brutality in her routines.

For starters, socio-political comedy means the jokes generally aren’t at the expense of marginalized communities, which is so often the case in mainstream comedy, Dobbins explained. That won’t be a problem at The Formula, because the comics they recruited are so diverse — mostly LGBT performers and people of color.

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