Unless you recognize a comedian’s name as That Girl From that Movie or the Dude from That One HBO Special, it can be hard to tell whether a stand-up is worth seeing. Lucky you: Scene did the legwork, and the skinny on this week’s big comedy shows, video included, is just a click away, starting with Eddie Griffin. – D.X. Ferris
Comedian: Eddie GriffinSpecialty: If you don’t recognize Griffin from the Def Comedy Jam, you might know him as one of the pimps from Norbit. Griffin riffs on family, race, religion, and sex.
Playing: Friday, February 29 and Saturday, March 1 at the Improv, 2000 Sycamore St., East Bank of the Flats, 216-696-4677, www.clevelandimprov.com. Two shows nightly: 8 and 10:15 p.m. Tickets: $31.
Comedian: Tom PapaSpecialty: This Hilarities regular cut his teeth opening for Jerry Seinfeld and went on to a short-lived NBC sitcom, Come to Papa. Choice topics include getting older, being married, and making poor tattoo choices.
Playing: Thursday, Feb. 28 through Sunday, March 2 at Pick & Frolic’s Hilarities E. 4th St. Theater, 2035 E. 4th St., Downtown, 216-736-4242, www.pickwickandfrolic.com Thu: 8 p.m. Fri-Sat: 7:30 and 10:15 p.m. Tickets: $18-23.
Comedian: Basile (with Mike Conley)
Specialty: Basile’s a beefy comedian with an even bigger voice, which he uses in a spectrum of characters and observations from everyday life.
Playing: Thursday, Feb. 28 through Saturday, March 1 at The Funny Stop, 1757 State Road, Cuyahoga Falls, 330-923-4700, www.funnystop.com Thu: 8:30 p.m. Fri, Sat: Two shows: 8 and 10:30 p.m.
Tickets $5-$16, two-drink minimum.