The Wild-Eyed, Long-Haired Comedian of the Year

Russell Brand had a big 2012, launching his stand-up show Brand X on FX and narrating the eighties send-up Rock of Ages. But that doesn't mean there isn't room for another wisecracking, eyeliner-wearing British export on American screens, and 2013 will belong to Tim Minchin. Here's how they stack up.

2012: Russell Brand
Experience Impersonating a Rock Star
Played the ridiculously named Aldous Snow in the 2010 comedy Get Him to the Greek and its 2008 predecessor Forgetting Sarah Marshall.

Actual Musical Cred
In addition to his memorable performances in Greek, sang "I Am the Walrus" at the closing ceremonies of the London Olympics.

Outspoken Political Stance
Raised awareness about substance abuse with the BBC doc Russell Brand: From Addiction to Recovery and lobbied Parliament to decriminalize drug use.


2013: Tim Minchin
Experience Impersonating a Rock Star
Play the ridiculously named Atticus Fetch in the sixth season of Showtime's Californication, premiering in January.

Actual Musical Cred
After wrapping up a run as Judas in the U.K. revival of Jesus Christ Superstar, brings his hit musical Matilda from London's West End to Broadway in March.

Outspoken Political Stance
One of his best-known musical bits (which he often performs live) expresses his spiritual skepticism with this line about the Pope: "Fuck the motherfucker."