Comedian Masai Graham has won the best joke gong at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival for the second time. Television station Dave assigned a top team of judges who picked Masai's pasta gag as the top joke this year.
Masai, who hails from the Midlands, wowed the judges with his gag: “I tried to steal spaghetti from the shop, but the female guard saw me and I couldn’t get pasta”. The joke, taken from his show Aaaaaaaaaargh! It's 101 Clean Jokes in 30 minutes at Dropkick Murphys, topped the list of funniest of the Fringe with 52% of Brits surveyed voting it the most hilarious rib-tickler.
Dave's panellists listened out to the jokes in the fringe that ticked them the most, before submitting their six favourites to be considered for the shortlist. This shortlist was then submitted anonymously - without the name of the comic involved - to a public vote of 2,000 Brits, after which the funniest was revealed.
It is the first time the award has been given out in three years. It comes after a smaller event in 2021 and a cancelled Fringe Festival in 2020.
Dave's top 10 funniest jokes of the Fringe
- I tried to steal spaghetti from the shop, but the female guard saw me and I couldn’t get Pasta - Masai Graham – 52%
- Did you know, if you get pregnant in the Amazon, it’s next day delivery - Mark Simmons – 37%
- My attempts to combine nitrous oxide and Oxo cubes made me a laughing stock - Olaf Falafel – 36%
- By my age, my parents had a house and a family, and to be fair to me, so do I, but it is the same house and it is the same family - Hannah Fairweather – 35%
- I hate funerals – I’m not a mourning person- Will Mars – 34%
- I spent the whole morning building a time machine, so that’s four hours of my life that I’m definitely getting back - Olaf Falafel – 33%
- I sent a food parcel to my first wife. FedEx - Richard Pulsford – 29%
- I used to live hand to mouth. Do you know what changed my life? Cutlery - Tim Vine – 28%
- Don’t knock threesomes. Having a threesome is like hiring an intern to do all the jobs you hate - Sophie Duker – 27%
- I can’t even be bothered to be apathetic these days - Will Duggan – 25%
Masai, who previously won the award in 2016, said: "It's great to see the Edinburgh Fringe Festival back up and running again, it's my spiritual home. I was so delighted to find out I'd won the Dave’s Funniest Joke of the Fringe award for a second time - I thought "This is getting Pasta joke.”
Recognising comics both established and up-and-coming, the Joke of the Fringe award celebrates the art of joke writing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and acknowledges the talent it requires to create knee-slapping one-liners. To ensure that there is no bias towards well-known or ‘household name’ comedians during the public vote, the jokes are listed with no reference to the comedian that wrote and performed them – meaning it is purely judged on the humour of the jokes themselves.
Cherie Cunningham, Dave channel director, said “What a pleasure to be back in Edinburgh. This is Dave’s first Joke of the Fringe in three years and the quality of submissions has been incredibly strong. It’s a fantastic top 10 full of newcomers and comedy veterans, and it’s a delight to crown Masai Graham as winner once more.”
The Edinburgh Fringe Festival is the biggest arts festival in the world and takes place every August for three weeks in Scotland’s capital city. Dave is the proud sponsor of the Edinburgh Comedy Awards, celebrating their 40th anniversary this year.