10 Times Obama Proved He's the Funniest President Ever
Candidate "likability" has been at the forefront of this presidential election — too much, if you ask me. As Oprah Winfrey said recently of Hillary Clinton, "She's not coming over to your house. You don't have to like her." Electing a president shouldn't be a personality contest; plenty of our best presidents haven't been particularly likable.
That said, we are coming off eight years with Barack Obama, who is arguably one of history's most likable presidents, and definitely one of the funniest. Whether or not you agree with his politics, President Obama possesses some of the finest comedic timing ever to hit the White House. He's been praised by comedians for his delivery, and The Washington Post called him the first alt-comedy president. He's also proving to be the most entertaining lame-duck president ever; now that he DGAF, Obama is spending the last few months of his term on a farewell comedy tour. Ahead, rewatch 10 of his funniest moments in recent memory.
When he appeared on Between Two Ferns
Remember how revolutionary it was to see a president on a ridiculous web series like Between Two Ferns with Zach Galifianakis? This year, Hillary Clinton followed Obama's lead like it was no big whoop.
Funniest moment: When Galifianakis, who starred in The Hangover, told Obama, "It must stink that you can't run three times," Obama replied, "No, actually I think it's a good idea. If I ran a third time, it'd be sort of like doing a third Hangover movie. It didn't really work out very well, did it?"
When he read Mean Tweets
The fact that comedians like Jimmy Kimmel trust Obama with a segment like "Mean Tweets" serves as a testament to his comedy chops. In his first round of tweet-reading on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Obama wasn't afraid to laugh at himself or the tweeters.
Funniest moment: In response to a tweet that said, "Somebody send Obama some life hacks on how to be a good president. Haha. Like, I bet that would help. LOL," Obama shot back: "You know, the LOL is redundant when you have the haha?"
When he showed his "birth video"
We may never have another president who can deliver such a solid comedy routine at the White House Correspondents' Dinner as Obama did in 2011 when he mocked Donald Trump. Of course, the president has people writing his jokes, but he knows how to sell them with stellar delivery.
Funniest moment: When Obama earnestly introduced his "birth video," which turned out to be a scene from The Lion King. He said, "I want to make clear to the Fox News table: that was a joke. That was not my real birth video. That was a children's cartoon. Call Disney if you don't believe me. They have the original long-form version."
When he shared his best quality
Many people could relate when Obama shared his "greatest strength" — being early to everything — in a funny video encouraging early voting.
Funniest moment: As proof of why being early is good, Obama explains, "You know how you beat LeBron James one-on-one? Get there 45 minutes early. Then it's one-on-none."
When he showed us how a roast is done
A good roast requires a willingness to make fun of yourself, which is why Donald Trump bombed at this year's Al Smith dinner. Obama, on the other hand, had an equal-opportunity approach to burns at the 2008 event.
Funniest moment: When a Michael Bloomberg burn turned out to be a Bill Clinton jab: "Michael Bloomberg is here. The mayor recently made some news by announcing that he's going to be rewriting the rules and running for a third term, which caused Bill Clinton to say, 'You can do that?'"
When he returned to Mean Tweets
For the second round of Obama's Mean Tweets, the president used the opportunity to brag about his accomplishments.
- In response to the tweet "Bro, do you even lift?" Obama retorted, "Well I lifted the ban on Cuban cigars. That's worth something."
- After reading Donald Trump's tweet that said, "President Obama will go down as perhaps the worst president in the history of the United States," Obama came back with, "Well, @realDonaldTrump, at least I will go down as a president."
When he showed off his straight-man skills
Admittedly, Obama's best comedy material is written for him, but Obama gets all the credit when it comes to being a great straight man. Keeping a straight face for the sake of comedy isn't easy (just ask Jimmy Fallon). In this mock job-interview segment with Stephen Colbert, Obama proves that he's funniest when he's not making a joke.
Funniest moment: When Obama mentions his Nobel Prize, Colbert asks, "Oh really, what was that for?" Straight-faced Obama's reply? "To be honest, I still don't know."
When he hung out with Seinfeld
Obama solidified his honorary comedian status when he appeared on Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee with Jerry Seinfeld.
When Obama told Seinfeld, "I do really well with the zero to 8 demographic. They love me. Partly because I think my ears are big, so I look a little bit like a cartoon character."
When he basically appeared in his own SNL skit
In a funny video called "Couch Commander" that aired during his White House Correspondents' Dinner in 2016, Obama explores his options after he leaves the White House.
This video is full of great straight-man moments, like when former Speaker of the House John Boehner tries to tempt him with a Camel. Obama also tells Boehner what he's looking forward to about leaving the White House: "I can wear my mom jeans in peace. I hate these tight jeans."
When he dropped the f*cking mic
Obama let it all out at his final White House Correspondents' Dinner in 2016, delivering line after line of killer comedy before ending his speech with "Obama out" and dropping the mic.
- When he joked dryly, "Last week, Prince George showed up to our meeting in his bathrobe. That was a slap in the face, a clear breach of protocol."
- When he noticed Donald Trump's absence: "You've got a room full of reporters, celebrities, cameras, and he says no? Is this dinner too tacky for the Donald? What could he possibly be doing instead? Is he at home, eating a Trump Steak, tweeting out insults to Angela Merkel? What's he doing?"
- When he actually went there and called out Hillary Clinton for making a "Colored People's Time" joke: "I do apologize for being a little late tonight — I was running on CPT, which stands for 'jokes white people should not make.'"