Best Comedian with a Message

Janine Brito

Quick! Catch this rising star before she's whisked off to the Big Apple. Or so we think. After all, her last several sets included bits about cross-country moving. Janine Brito is relatively new on the scene, but she's gained a lot of mileage since opening for W. Kamau Bell's "Blacktastic Black History Month Blacktacular...Black!" last year. Now she cites Bell as a mentor, and he, in turn, calls her "Oakland's next W. Kamau Bell," which is actually a pretty high compliment. The two perform alongside Hari Kondabalu and Nato Green in the political comedy tour Laughter Against the Machine, one of the few roving stand-up shows that tackles colonialism, racial hegemony, filmmaker Tyler Perry, and other thorny subject matter. Much of Brito's material has to do with being an out lesbian — which, of course, adds to her appeal in the East Bay — but she's also known for a very funny haiku about white people.

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