Jewish Sketch and Stand-Up of the 1990s

SNL Jews, Jon Stewart, South Park

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Consider Hugh Fink's "Pizza" joke: "I don't like the way people are now using September 11th as an excuse. I was in Phoenix last week, and I ordered a pizza. I said, 'Half pepperoni and half cheese.' The guy came in half an hour later, and I said, 'Hey, this is sausage. I said half pepperoni and half cheese.' And he goes, 'Um, due to the recent tragedy of September 11th, we forgot to put pepperonis on.'"

For Jewish women comedians, many of whom had encountered gender discrimination in the '70s and '80s, the playing field began to level out in the '90s. "I'm treated more equally now," says Susie Essman (Curb Your Enthusiasm, Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist).

Like their male counterparts, Jewish female comics began incorporating more Jewish references into their acts, such as this recent Judy Gold routine:

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Arie Kaplan

Arie Kaplan is the author of the critically-acclaimed nonfiction book From Krakow to Krypton: Jews and Comic Books (JPS). He's also a comic book writer and a screenwriter. Recently, Arie wrote the story and dialogue for the upcoming House M.D. videogame. Please check out his website,