Hippieman performs at Denver’s Comedy Works.
Hippieman performs at Denver's Comedy Works. (Courtesy photo)

In case you're looking for a good laugh this semester, turn off CNN and head on over to a few of these comical scenes that are more funny ha-ha than funny he-he:

Boulder Comedy Club

This extremely new comedy club in Boulder has been operating out of the Lazy Dog on Pearl Street and continues to bring in some rather big names -- both local and national and, yes, including favorites like the ever-popular Hippieman -- for live shows that have to be seen to be believed, unless you're a nihilist. Word is that the folks who run this dealybop are working hard to really get things moving for the new school year, including amping the frequency of shows and bringing in improv groups as well as staging open mic nights for amateurs.

Comedy Works

There's no question that biggest venue in the metro area when it comes to comedy is the aptly named Comedy Works in Denver. You can check out shows by some national greats, local faves and also their Tuesday New Talent Nights (8 p.m.) where you can catch all sorts of bumbling whatnot. It's such a well-known club that many comics will record their albums there, so you know it's gotta be something worth the ticket price (which is sometimes free if you're lucky).

The Grawlix

This show takes place every first Friday of the month at the Avenue Theater in Denver. It's $7, which means they must be doing something right. "They" being the hosts, local talents Ben Roy (one of our area's most notables), Adam Clayton-Holland, Andrew Orvedahl and Jim Hickox. The show offers everything from stand-up to video to live sketches to special guest stars.

Too Much Fun! Comedy and Music Showcase

Run by local hoodlums of hilarity, the Fine Gentleman's Club (Chris Charpentier, Sam Tallent, Nathan Lund and Bobby Crane), this free showcase takes place every Wednesday night at 10 p.m. at Denver's Rockaway Tavern. Listen to hot tunes by hot DJs being... hot (or cool), drink some drinks, eat some eats and hopefully laugh without choking at the night's funny folkles.

Wits End Comedy Club

This venue might be in Westminster, but don't let that turn you away. At least check out this second oldest comedy club in the metro area that includes stand-up acts every Thursday through Saturday night with other special events along the way. It ain't cheap (normally $10-12 a show, more for specials), but -- again -- you get what you pay for, so shut up and sing. Or pay, in this case. There's a full-service bar, "yummy food" and some kind of beer there called "Butt Crack Ale," but don't blame me if you order it and get your butt cracked for the trouble.

Impulse Theater Impulse Comedy Club

The Lion’s Lair is home to one of Denver’s roughest open mic nights.
The Lion's Lair is home to one of Denver's roughest open mic nights.

Lovers of all things tautological, the Impulse Theater Impulse Comedy Club -- recently named Denver's Best Comedy Club by Metromix.com -- is based right out of Denver's Wynkoop Brewing Company, so you know that you'll be laughing after breathing in the fumes and drinking up the fizz of the good beers, if nothing else. Having started in 1987, this show combines traditional comedy with audience interaction and improv to create something light but filling, just like the beer. Performances are Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights. Tickets are $16-18.

LeftRightTIM

Created by CU students themselves, this super-local comedy improv group puts on shows seemingly whenever they feel like it (like for the Japan relief fund, for example) and will keep students -- and even other Boulderites -- in stitches. Unless they don't like that, and then LeftRightTIM will take out said stitches. But for a fee. That fee? Cheese popcorn. Keep on the lookout for upcoming shows. Flyers, Facebook, Faceflyers, Flyface, et al.

Open mics

In case you actually want to do a little comedy yourself, you can check out three area open mics where just about anything goes. Probably. Try to keep it funny, though. People are paying good money to watch you fuck up. Actually, wait, no, they're not paying. On Sunday nights, you got Kinga's Lounge which has their show on Sunday's, hosted by Jordan Doll at 8 p.m. The Lion's Lair -- reputed to be a dark and seedy Denver punk dive -- is a show for people who don't mind getting beer bottles thrown at their heads if they suck. Or even if they're good. This shit's at 10 p.m., is free, hosted by Sam Tallent and Roger Norquist and happens on Monday nights. The Squire Lounge's deal goes on Tuesday nights at "11-ish" and is also free, hosted by Greg Baumhauer.

Great Debates

For comedy debating (yes, seriously), you can pop into the Buntport Theater, where you'll find a group of improv kids who are ready to put on The Great Debate, a unique comedy show in which such funny questions are asked and argued over as "Bacon vs. Kevin Bacon: Discuss," etc. This happens every third Tuesday of the month. You can also get into Arguments and Grievances at the Vine Street Pub in Denver, every third Sunday of the month. Same idea, different group. Real original, guys.

The Narrators and Randomicity

Andrew Orvedahl's "The Narrators" allows locals to come and vent about personal stories in their own lives that some people may find funny... and that some may find downright scary. Or boring or weird or whatever. But, you get the idea. Think "Vagina Monologues," only it's your vagina (please put that away). Happens at Paris on the Platte Wine Bar in Denver, with themed shows every first Wednesday and a regular show every third Thursday of the month. Orvedahl also just kicked off his "Randomicity" show which has two teams of comics battling each other with jokes every last Wednesday of the month at the Hi-Dive in Denver.

Too Much Funstival

From the folks who brought you the Too Much Fun! Comedy and Music Showcase (obvy), comes this festival of foolishness, frolic and fun that will be taking place from tonight until the end of the weekend and will include music, art, comedy, water balloons, Capture the Flag, comic books, dodgeball, kickball, a bounce castle, beer and funnel cake. And films and kisses. And TJ Miller. It's put on by pretty much everyone already mentioned, so they've got enough press already. For specific details: toomuchfunstival.blogspot.com.