Considering that Varun Thakur has gone viral many times over as his delightfully execrable alter ego Vicky Malhotra, it’s striking what a likeable comedian he is when performing as himself. His delivery is marked by confidence, sincerity and clarity, and his material over the years has included several well-etched observational and anecdotal pieces.
Thakur was one of the founders of Schitzengiggles (SNG) Comedy, one of India’s most successful comedy collectives, four of whose members recently parted ways with the fifth, Karan Talwar. Thakur was the first to launch his own YouTube channel, and has steadily been gaining a new set of followers loyal to him (96,000 at the time this post was written). Here are five of Thakur’s videos, ranked.
5. Thakur takes on the much-explored subject of porn, riffing on (among other aspects) the various types of porn, the years when it could only be watched on a dialup connection.
4. Thakur describes the awkwardness of explaining to his friends while he was living abroad why he had a cup in his bathroom.
3. Comedians ranting about bad customer service is not our favourite genre. But Thakur vents his frustrations about Vodafone in such a good-natured way that it actually works well as comedy. Particularly relatable is the bit on the frustrations of trying to talk to people when you have poor signal.
2. Thakur gets his chemistry wrong in the first part of this video, which is about Manikchand Oxyrich water. But he gets a pass because the second joke, about two-way answering phones, is spot on.
1. Among the earliest of Thakur’s videos to go up online, this one is a well-honed bit on pharmacists, or as they are known in India, “chemists and druggists,” who confidently prescribe medicines to their customers (who equally confidently trust them).