Ron Funches is JFL’s most adorable comedian

We spoke to the L.A.-based comic who opened for Dave Chappelle last year ahead of his trio of headlining gigs this week.


Ron Funches sounds like it could be the name of an adorable mascot on a kid’s television show.

In reality, Funches is a soft-spoken teddy bear of a comedian who delivers equal parts whimsy and darkness at an unhurried pace. The native Chicagoan got his start in comedy in Portland, Oregon before settling in Los Angeles. Fans of warped sketch program Kroll Show know him as animal plastic surgeon Dr. Armond’s childlike attorney. Just for Laughs devotees probably remember his Skittles-dropping turn as one of Dave Chappelle’s warm-up acts last year.

“Opening for Dave was a personal triumph for me,” the 31-year-old said from Los Angeles. “I knew people were there to see him, but if I told good jokes, I could get everyone on my side. It ended up being one of the best shows I ever had.”

Winning over a rabid Chappelle fanbase wasn’t his only major coup during his time here last summer. The huggable lug also had his way with our women, and he’s hoping for a repeat performance. Being a headliner this year should only improve his chances.

“There are so many beautiful ladies up there, and I got to hang with a few nice ones and eat some wonderful food. I love girls who speak French,” he said. “Staying out late, chasing your women and ordering pizza – that’s going to be my whole deal.”

He’s more of a gamer than an athlete, so he’s hoping this time around it’s the girls who pursue him, and not the other way around. It cuts down on the need for physical exertion.

“I’ll have a lot of guys come up and hug me, too,” he admitted. “I’m fine with that – I’ll hug you either way. If you think I’m just cute and cuddly, though, you might be surprised by some of the jokes I tell. I’m adorable, but I’ll also fuck the shit out of you. I’m multifaceted.”

For instance, Funches might not be well known for his acting, but this year he scored a sidekick role on NBC sitcom Undateable. He and his castmates – all veteran comedians – will be teaming up for a show at this year’s JFL.

The more Funches branches out into acting, the more it becomes apparent his lethargic delivery and gentle voice is not an act. He even sounded that way in interview.

“It’s my natural way of speaking, but it took time for me to learn how to be comfortable in my own skin on stage,” he said. “It worked better than coming out and yelling at the crowd, ‘Hey, who’s drinking?!’” ■


Ron Funches performs at Cabaret Underworld (1403 St-Élisabeth) on July 23, 24, 26, $20. See showtimes and buy tickets here.

Undateable Live happens at Cabaret Underworld  on July 26, 11:45 p.m., $20