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The Top Ten Comedy Books of 2015! Vote!

2015 was an amazing year for comedy, and a really strong year for books authored by comedians. These ten comedians managed to find time to each write a book despite having busy full time comedy careers. The books range the gamut in subject matter, from autobiographical, to historical, artistic and creative, and even illustrated. We picked ten of the best books of the year to highlight, and now we need you to vote, on who had the #1 book. Was it , , , , , , , , or Issa Rae? [read more]

Ballpark Figure: Greg Proops

Greg Proops is a comedian known by many names. To some, he is the Smartest Man in the World (as the title of his podcast proudly proclaims). To others, he’s one of the longtime cast members of Whose Line Is It Anyway?. Some know Proops for his voiceover work in films like The Phantom Menace, or perhaps as the author of the newly released Smartest Book in the World,  but his most natural talent resides on the stage, where his cutting insights and wry observations have made him one of the most consistently inventive stand-up comedians working today. [read more]

REVIEW: A few of my favourite things

GREG Proops’s current podcast series, The Smartest Man in the World, is the impetus behind the publication of his noteworthy book, The Smartest Book in the World. The author, a witty member of the improvisational comedy show Whose Line is it Anyway? started his podcast in 2010 — and the material for the book is based on half a decade’s worth of output. [read more]

Best nonfiction books of 2015: Some Colorado, some entertainment

“The Smartest Book in the World,” Greg Proops (Touchstone)
Consummate smart-ass and comedy renaissance man Greg Proops (“Whose Line Is It Anyway?”) performs a dizzying variety show of knowledge and commentary, from baseball to cross-dressing buddy comedies.
Denver Post [read more]

Greg Proops on The Smartest Book in the World at Shakespeare and Company Paris

Greg Proops, Three Ways  [read more]

In My House, Stalin’s Daughter and The Smartest Book in the World. [read more]

‘Whose Line?’ star Greg Proops gives us ‘The Smartest Book in the World’
Examiner [read more]

The Dumbest Review in the World on The Smartest Book in the World and an Interview with Comedian Greg Proops
Everybody Hates Cleveland [read more]

“funny, political, literate, and bold—all at once.”
New York Journal of Books [read more]

“”The Smartest Book in the World” (Touchstone, $25) is the literary equivalent of a spinning globe. It takes on world history, poetry, buddy movies and Roman emperors — often within the span a few pages.”
Mercury News [read more]

“It’s a terrifically random appreciation of cultural touchstones that’s sure to inspire readers to look further.
— Publishers Weekly [read more]

“Snarky history and piquant criticism as delivered by the smartass in the back of the classroom.”
Kirkus Review [read more]

“WARNING: STUPID PEOPLE ARE CAUTIONED TO AVOID THIS BOOK. Its advanced comedy notions may cause emotional hemorrhaging and/or unwanted brain wrinkles.”
Chris Hardwick, host of @midnight.

“It turns out Whose Line Is It Anyway? only hinted at its former in-house player Greg Proops’ gift of gab, which is constantly on display in the weekly soliloquy he calls a Proopscast. Armed with a lifetime of accumulated trivia, reckless tales of youthful adventure, exquisite diction, and an unflappable comic pomposity, Proops dissects both consequential and ridiculous news items while unburdening whatever is bothering him. From crowd interactions to any given newspaper headline, each bit of stimulus serves as a way to take a mad flume ride through the sluices of Proops’ brain.”
Rolling Stone “The 20 Best Comedy Podcasts Right Now” on “The Smartest Man in the World”

“Some of the boldest comedy on the podcasting frontier right now. Proops proved himself a keen improviser on Whose Line Is It Anyway?… but his performance there only hinted at how nimble he is.”
Rolling Stone on “The Smartest Man in the World” podcast

“Greg Proops’s bold, never-boring voice takes center stage in this live recording of his renowned podcast.”
New York Times on “The Smartest Man in the World” podcast


The Smartest Man in the World Press:

San Francisco Chronicle/Podcast: Greg Proops still feels at home in San Francisco

He may not actually be the smartest man in the world, but Greg Proops has a near-photographic memory for the San Francisco comedy scene of the past. [Read more]

Cannes: Open Road Nabs U.S. Rights to Animated ‘Duck Duck Goose’

Open Road Films has acquired all U.S. rights to the animated family comedy Duck Duck Goose.
Featuring a voice cast headed up by Jim Gaffigan, Zendaya and Lance Lim, [Read more] Interview: Rarely Asked Questions – Greg Proops

Greg Proops is a bit of a legend. The smart-suited American is a terrific stand-up comedian but may be better known as a master of improvisation. [Read more] Greg Proops Might be The Smartest Man at JFL

The inimitable Greg Proops is coming to JFL this year for two separate events, the Proopcast, a recording of his world-famous podcast, The Smartest Man in the World, and he is also going to be discussing politics with Lewis Black for the Living in Fictional Times show. I am a super fan, and had the most lovely occasion to talk to him in advance of his arrival this year. [Read more] The Hustle: Greg Proops 2016.07.26

This may come as a surprise to those who knew me during my Vancouver days, but when I was a kid I used to watch the British version of ‘Whose Line is it Anyway’ religiously.
When I studied improv in Vancouver, I much preferred long-form, where a suggestion is taken and extrapolated into longer scenes and woven narrative stories. I actually honed my skills as a photographer by avoiding playing short form at an improv open-mic, opting out of the games to take pictures of my fellow improvisers, before performing a long-form set in the second half with my group. [Read more] Greg Proops on Whose Line Is It Anyway?: ‘It’s the one time I’m confident 2016.06.02

Jeremy Corbyn, pervy sexual tension, tiny horned hamsters … improv comedy star Proops chucks anything into the mix on Whose Line Is It Anyway? As its London stage run begins, he reveals the show’s secret sauce [Read more here] Podcasts You Love (2016) 2016.02.18

We asked the BuzzFeed Community and BuzzFeed staff to tell us about the best podcasts they have been getting into in 2016 so far. Here are some of their great suggestions. . Smartest Man in the World — Hosted by Greg Proops, from Whose Line Is It Anyway?, this show is more than just stand-up — it is a hoot of intellectual, witty observations. [Read more here] Arts: Age of disbelief 2015.12.23

[SPOILER ALERT: Anyone who believes in Santa Claus, still writes letters to and receives letters from Santa Claus, or would prefer not to hear stories about how other people came to believe that there was no Santa Claus, should be warned that, um, stuff is about to be said that might change the way they feel about, you know, Santa Claus].

[ADDITIONAL ALERT: Anyone who doesn’t “get” the humor of comedian Greg Proops should be warned that the actual Greg Proops appears to say some pretty humorous things about Santa Claus, beginning roughly halfway through this article]. [Read more here] Comedian Greg Proops takes the Marketplace Quiz 2015.11.13

If you have ever watched the show, “Inside the Actors Studio,” you’ve probably heard host James Lipton ask his guests questions from the Proust Questionnaire, a relatively famous series of questions of his guests about their deepest desires, what they want heaven to look like, things like that. [Read more here] 5 reasons we love Greg Proops

Whether it’s on “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” or as “The Smartest Man in the World”, we love Greg Proops. Here are five reasons why he’s one of our favorite comedians. [Read more here]

Time Out London/ The Best Comedy Podcast

Everyone knows Greg Proops is a master improviser; we’ve all seen his sublime work on ‘Whose Line is it Anyway?’ But its on his solo podcast – recorded at comedy clubs across the world – that we see the pompadour-donning comic’s improv skills at their best. [Read more here]

The Telegraph/ Greg Proops, Hay Festival, review 2014.05.27

Greg Proops’s Hay Festival show started brilliantly but ended up as an unnecessary political rant, says Rupert Hawksley [Read more here]

Rolling Stone/ Listen Up: The 20 Best Comedy Podcast Right Now. ‘Greg Proops Is the Smartest Man in the World’ 2014.5.08

It turns out Whose Line Is It Anyway? only hinted at its former in-house player Greg Proops’ gift of gab, which is constantly on display in the weekly soliloquy he calls a “Proopscast.” [Read more here]

Static Beach/ Greg Proops – The Smartest Man Alive 2014.3.06

Dive into the Ether… 

Los Angeles is host to so many talented comedians. From nationally acclaimed troupes like Upright Citizens Brigade and The Groundlings (where comedic veterans like Amy Poehler, Will Ferrell, Phil Hartman, and Maya Rudolph got their start) to thriving spots like Nerdmelt, great comedians can be found almost anywhere. Amidst all these local talents is one comedian that you shouldn’t miss: the brazen, bold, and painfully debonair Greg Proops. [Read more here]

The This week’s best podcasts: World Service Music Documentaries 2014.3.01

Once a month, the brilliantly acerbic American comic Greg Proops hosts a screening of one of his favourite films at a Los Angeles cinema and records a 45-minute-long preamble which he releases as this podcast. It’s a stimulating, regularly funny listen, especially if you’re familiar with the films under discussion – which range from Howard Hawks’s noir classic The Big Sleep to the surf-themed Keanu Reeves / Patrick Swayze vehicle, Point Break, to Woody Allen’s Annie Hall [Read more here] 8 Must-Listen Comedy Podcasts 2013.12.31

You probably remember Greg Proops from Who’s Line Is It, Anyway? He was the guy dressed in black with the cool glasses and hair that would have made him a runner-up to play the next Doctor. He was on both the UK and American versions of the show, and was later cast as one half of the two-headed podrace announcer in The Phantom Menace. (“That’s gotta hurt!”) [Read more here] Podcast Spotlight: The Smartest Man in the World Proopcast 2013.12.03

Kittens McTavish!  If you’ve never tuned in to the dulcet meaderings of the Proopster, Proopmaster, Prooptacular One, Proopnosticator of Proopitude, or… nope, I just Prooped out of monikers (but, trust me, there are several more), then it may be difficult to convey the type of electrifying, off-beat, vodka drenched, thought provoking, fun, depressing but in a good way, uplifting, irreverent, topical, exhilerating, political, satirical, scholarly, profane, unrelenting show this is. [Read more here]

Laughspin/ The Gospel of Greg Proops: A selection of truths, as heard on The Smartest Man in the World 2013.07.18

In a world full of windbags, comedian Greg Proops is a deep puff of fresh air. Every week his Vodcast, The Smartest Man in the World takes to the aether to remind us that not all middle-aged white men are gynophobic power whores. [Read more here]

Irish GAZETTE/ Improviser, Comedian, Podcast genius returns to Dublin stage 2013.07.18

Beloved comedian, actor and podcaster Greg Proops is making a welcome return to Ireland in the coming weeks, with appearances at the Galway Arts Festival and the Vodafone Comedy Festival at the Iveagh Gardens on July 27. [Read more here] CAVE Interview Series: Greg Proops 2013.05.28

Improv comedian Greg Proops is perhaps best known for his regular appearances on Whose Line Is It Anyway?

But his storied career also includes voice work for Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace and Bob the Builder, as well as many other film and television projects. [Read more here]

Greg Proops is the Smartest Man in the World: Live Podcast Taping at The Bell House
2013.01.21 LocalBozo

The Greg Proops you may know from his tenure on the American version of “Whose Line Is It Anyway” is simply only one dimension of a truly remarkable and highly intelligent comedian and entertainer. Over the past year, Proops stretched and worked out his other talent muscles as the host and creator of a podcast that truly is his namesake. “Greg Proops is The Smartest Man In The World” features the spectacle wearing funny man as a one man band of sorts, sprouting out deliciously layered monologues going in a thousand different fantastic directions. On Saturday, Greg brought the popular podcast to Brooklyn’s The Bell House for a live taping. The LocalBozo comedy crew was front and center, ready to digest every nuance Proops would produce. [Read more here]

Greg Proops talks San Carlos, “Midnight Caller” and Kiss at the Cow Palace

I’ve been wanting to interview Greg Proops for a while. He grew up in San Carlos, came up in the 1980s San Francisco comedy scene, improved on “Whose Line,” voiced Bob the Builder and once appeared on a “Midnight Caller” episode. [Read more here]

Greg Proops looks forward to Sketchfest
2013.01.20 San Francisco Chronicle

What started as a quick sound bite-filled conversation about SF Sketchfest has detoured down the Greg Proops rabbit hole. The comedian riffs humorously for nearly four minutes about KSFO radio hosts of the 1970s. Six minutes, 15 seconds covers the now-defunct Circle Star Theater. [Read more here]

Greg Proops- The Smartest Man in the World Podcast. The Thinking man’s way to Laugh
2012.12.11 Monkey Simple Tech

Podcasting is not as popular as it should be and that is a shame.

I try to explain podcasts to my friends (“It’s like grown up radio without commercials”) and all I get back are glassy-eyed stares. I really try to explain the eco-system that allows niche podcasts to flourish alongside more mainstream offerings most of us are familiar with and used to hearing like Adam Carolla, Leo Laporte and The Mike O’Meara Show. [Read more here]

The Smartest Man In The World Spins Pop Culture Brilliance & Cult Comedy At Cinefamily

Not content to be a pioneer in the contemporary reinvention of radio known as the podcasting scene, comedian and dangerous free-thinker Greg Proops has decided to make his mark on cinema as well. But not by producing films; no, a look at his extensive tour schedule is evidence that he’s much too busy for that. [Read more here]

Greg ProopsNatural storyteller paints even overhashed topics a new shade of funny
2012.08.23 Edinburgh Festival Guide

Greg Proops is rambling (‘If there’s any critics in – fuck you. Why did you come on a Sunday night?’ Colour me chastised.) He finds tangents and embraces them, drawling on about the Scottish accent and his inability to understand that old chestnut: the ‘salt ‘n’ sauce’ dilemma. [Read more here]

Festival preview: Greg Proops, comedian

GREG Proops is back at the Fringe, ready to prove what anyone who has downloaded his podcasts already knows – that he’s the smartest man in the world. [Read more here]

Q&A with Comedian Greg Proops: On the Best S.F. Haunts and Fuckin’ Kindles
2012.08.02 SF Weekly – San Francisco, CA

Stand-up legend Greg Proops (most familiarly of both the British and American versions of Whose Line Is It, Anyway?) returns to San Francisco three or four times every year. Although born and raised in San Carlos, Proops spent his formative years as a comedian here, and, as he will tell you, the city is forever an important part of his life [Read more here]

The Smartest Man In The World
2012.07 – via: Meadow Muffins of the Mind Blog.

As we have touched on in this space from time to time, comedy podcasting has started to become a more vital part of my commuting and listening rotation. [Read more here]

Greg Proops, ‘The Smartest Man In The World,’ Heads To D.C. Improv
2012.06.06 Huffington Post – Washington D.C.

WASHINGTON — The Smartest Man in the World understands the joke. The podcaster, stand up, improvisor and actor Greg Proops started his podcast, “The Smartest Man in the World” in 2010. [Read more here]

Always Smart, Never Boring
2012.05 LA Lookout – Los Angeles, CA

Comedian and one-man-talk-show host/guest Greg Proops is the heady, spirit-sipping philosopher friend you always wished you had, but never had the time or intellect to sustain. [Read more here]

The Reasons I love Greg Proops
2012.05 Dave Burton’s Blog – Australia

Greg Proops’ podcast is like an olive. It’s sharp, insulting, disorganised and inconsistent. And it’s marvellous. [Read more here]

Comedy Stand up: Greg Proops
2012.04.11 Flavor Pill – Chicago

With his cockeyed smirk and rectangular eyeglass frames, Greg Proops has the perfect look to match his bitchy sophisticate persona. [Read more here]

Greg Proops at Soho Theatre
2012.03.23 Chortle, The UK comedy guide

He’s still best known as an improviser from the Nineties, but in his modern stand-up guise, Greg Proops is a jackhammer of sarcasm, driving away relentlessly in his attempts to crack the hard ground of first-world complacency. [Read more here]

Podcast Review: The Smartest Man in the World
2012.03.15 Groove Guide

Sometimes you need a break from looking up nougat on Wikipedia, trying to figure out why your Snickers tasted so great. After all that hard work, it’s a good idea to lie down on the couch and recover. A worthy companion for your rehabilitation is Greg Proops, The Smartest Man in the World. [Read more here]

Smarter than the average comic…
2012.03.10 Herald Scotland

How did a quiffed light-hearted improv nerd from San Francisco become the abrasive voice of reason? Jay Richardson talks to Greg Proops as he prepares to hit the Glasgow Comedy Festival
Last August, as rioters set English cities ablaze, comedians addressing the violence were conspicuous by their absence. [Read more here]

SXSW Comedy Announces Podcast Lineup: ‘WTF With Marc Maron,’ Doug Benson And More
2012.02.06 Huffington Post

South By Southwest, the wide-ranging media festival held in Austin, TX in March, has announced its planned live comedy podcast tapings for 2012. In addition to several returning podcasts, the festival is expanding its Comedy lineup to eight live podcast recordings. SXSW Comedy will be held continuously from March 10 – 17 this year. [ Read more here]

SF Sketchfest: Proops, Pepitone, Peretti — and (Surprise!) Robin Williams — Master Set List
2012.01.30 San Francisco Weekly

“Bay Area native and podcaster supreme Greg Proops (he of Whose Line is it Anyway?) worked through his set sketch-style, improvising multi-character scenarios for several of his topics… ” [Read more here]

2011.12.10 ifc

“…He’s funny, he’s eloquent without being afraid of profanity, and he’s fervently political…” [Read more here]

2011.11.27 new york magazine

“…Greg Proopss Top Five Podcasts You Aren’t Listening To…” [Read more here]

2011.11.25 timeout london

“…an overwhelming number of comedy shows to choose from in London…” [Read more here]

2011.11.27 the uk independent

“…the king of improv Greg Proops, at least, should be able to show how it’s done…” [Read more here]

2011.11.14 i am rogue

“…now the comedian…has truly found his voice with his groundbreaking weekly podcast The Smartest Man in the World…” [Read more here]

2011.10.21 usa today

“…I’m kind of obsessed…[Proops] manages to throw out about 213 topics in the span of about an hour…” [Read more here]

2011.09.29 the hollywood reporter

“…fans that follow comedy have turned to podcasts in the millions and are devoted to it…” [Read more here]

2011.09.19 Beck/Smith Hollywood

“…Greg Proops has quickly become a master of another new medium with his The Smartest Man in the World podcast …” [Read more here]

2011.09.14 geek chic daily

“…The IQ at NerdMelt just ticked up a few dozen points, because comedian Greg Proops has decided to …” [Read more here]

2011.08.24 timeout london

“…Is there anything in comedy that Greg Proops hasn’t done? The San Franciscan comic has performed improv, sketch and stand-up, been in …” [Read more here]

2011.08.08 sfweekly

“…It’s hard to imagine a comedy performance more energetic or well received than Greg Proops’ late show Friday night at the Punch Line…” [Read more here]


“…Greg Proops showed exactly what this format was capable of Ð as well he might, given his 437-year career as a top improviser…” [Read more here]


“…David Feldman and Greg Proops sat down to talk podcasts, stand-up, and improv, as well as why…” [Read more here]

2011.04.06 Rolling Stone

“…Here [Greg] is…in front of a live audience each week, bravely recording some of the boldest comedy on the podcasting frontier right now…” [Read more here]

2011.06.09 The Ploplist

“…the show flows like a love letter to tangents. Greg Proops is one of the best improvisers and compliments those skills on the show with …” [Read more here]

2011.04.06 Sydney Morning Herald

“…Greg Proops is an American who doesn’t hold back. Not on stage, not on radio and not on television. Nor is the telephone a platform Proops thinks is suited to restraint…” [Read more here]


“…earlier this year, I watched Proops perform in a tiny, dim lounge in Los AngelesÑa swift, breathless, blistering, 30-minute rant that somehow swept the entire universe of pop culture (cocksucking, cocaine, Kardashians) into one perfect moment of performance art…” [Read more here]


“…While many fans might recognize Proops from his improv hijinks on both the US and UK versions of the celeb game show Who’s Line Is It Anyway?, as well as the UK game shows Space Cadets and Mock the Week, Proops has an impressive list of credits with voice acting roles in…” [Read more here]


“I was pretty sure I was on Team Conan, but I may have flipped to Team Proops…Proops has a fun, ranty, self-deprecating, flamboyant, quick comedy style with depth, range, and most importantly, great jokes…” [Read more here]

2009.10.09 Punchline Magazine Online – Review of “Elsewhere” CD

“The Great White Snark, Greg Proops, seizes pop culture in his jaw and punctures suck-up politicans, effed-up celebs and clueless civilians on Elsewhere, his furiously funny new CD…” [Read more here]

Time Out – Paris

“Underpinned by a wry intelligence, Proops is one of those rare comedians who can be silly all the time without becoming irritating.”

Filter Magazine

“I am a touring comedian. I have no road manager, no posse, no midget. Just my scibbled notes and me. Rather than write everything down in a handsome Moroccan-bound ledger, I have developed a system…” [Read more here]

2009.03.25 Decider – Chicago

“Greg Proops is probably still best remembered as the bespectacled and loud-shirt-wearing performer from both the British and American iterations of Whose Line Is It Anyway?, the improvisational “game show” that was…” [Read more here]

2009.04.26 LAist – Los Angeles

“Who does he think attends the Greg Proops Chat show, if not smart ass goobers? (For anyone who is offended by that, know that I include myself in this category.) So instead he chose the…” [Read more here]

2009.03.19 Rolling Stone – USA

“Best known for his improv work, a recurring role on Nickelodeon’s True Jackson, VP, and guest stints on shows like Flight of the Conchords, Proops is hosting a monthly Chat Show at the recently relocated Largo, and asking friends to…” [Read more here]

2008.11.08 The LA Times – Los Angeles

“…Max, the head of Mad (please, please let Mad Max be intentional) is played deliciously by Greg Proops (“Whose Line Is It Anyway?”). He takes one look at True and hires her On The Spot…” [Read more here]

2008.07.01 The Comic’s Comic – Internet

“You probably recognize Greg Proops from his years improvising on TV in both the U.K. and U.S. in Whose Line is it Anyway? Some of you may remember Proops from hosting a TV dating show called Rendez-View. Or maybe…” [Read more here]

2008.03.03 Metromix – Los Angeles

“Not to totally generalize, but why do people from San Francisco complain so much about L.A.? And can I do anything to make them shut their squawking…” [Read more here]

2008.02.18 Punchline Magazine Online

“You probably recognize Greg Proops from his years improvising on TV in both the U.K. and U.S. in Whose Line is it Anyway? Some of you may remember Proops from hosting a TV dating show called Rendez-View. Or maybe…” [Read more here]

2008.01.11 LAist – Los Angeles

“The always dapper Greg Proops is at the Hollywood Improv. Whose Line Is It Anyway? was the mass media vehicle to inform all of us that Greg Proops is a gentleman and a scholar but that…” [Read more here]

2007.08.23 LA Weekly – Los Angeles

“L.A.Õs best-dressed comic (sorry, Paul F. Tompkins) brings his chat show to the cozy confines of Largo for more smart talk with guests Drew Carey, David Palmer and Greg Behrendt…” [Read more here]

2006.11.29 Drink, Joke, Woman – Esquire Magazine

“Proops, as it turned out, is the funniest man in L.A., with kinda retro hair and glasses and an interesting voice and mannerisms that kept it interesting the entire time he was onstage — superenergetic with a witty, intelligent kind of observational humor…” [Read more here]

Whose Line is It Anyways? Live! London Press:

-Whose Line is It Anyway? Live, Adelphi Theatre, review: ‘A mix of pure silliness with the threat of total chaos ‘

Anderson and old timers Greg Proops, Josie Lawrence, Brad Sherwood and Colin Mochrie have been sorely missed, says Claire Allfree – The Telegraph [read more]

– Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Adelphi Theatre, review: Master jokers leave little room for improv-ment

It was no surprise that this seasoned ensemble was still sharp, says Bruce Dessau – The London Evening Standard [read more]

– Whose Line Is It Anyway? Live review – impro that’s improved with age

It is striking to see impro, for so long the runt of the entertainment litter, cheered in a West End theatre. This Whose Line Is It Anyway? revival follows on from Clive Anderson and co’s performances at last year’s Edinburgh fringe. The live version of the Channel 4 hit mainlines nostalgia, but backs it up with big laughs and a generous, unpretentious spirit. [read more]

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