Best Man Speeches
Who doesn't like getting stuck into a juicy roast? The groom is the centrepiece of this particular carve-up. Assuming you feel comfortable with dredging up embarrassing anecdotes from the groom's past (and assuming he feels comfortable with that too), a traditional roast is the route to take. Pick gags that are relevant to the groom and your own style of delivery, and you'll bring the house down, guaranteed. Just don't expect the groom to buy you a drink afterwards.
One Size Fits All
(An exploration into the Groom’s proudest and funniest moments, by way of a gentle roast.)
This Best Man speech focuses on one-line humour that will appeal to the majority of your audience (well, you can never please everyone). The format here provides ample room for wisecracks, and illustrates how to make fun without getting too close to the bone. The Bride needs to feel she's made the right decision, after all...
Groom and Best Man were Housemates
(Here's a raucous Best Man speech that reveals the Groom’s apathy towards housework, lack of cooking prowess, and general laziness. In short, you're going to have some fun here.)
This type of Best Man speech is of the ‘insider scoop' variety. As a Best Man you should always aim to disclose at least one hidden revelation in your speech; this one's loaded with them. A clever trick to making an anecdote sound funnier is placing yourself in it. It doesn't matter if you were there or not. In fact, it doesn't even matter if the anecdote is true or not. Let your imagination run wild...
Prince Harry’s Best Man Speech
(A bit of a novelty this one: This is Prince Harry’s Best Man toast for the wedding of his brother William to Kate Middleton. If we'd written it, that is.)
Okay, it's unlikely you're going to be asked to toast a future King of England. Still, this speech highlights some sound examples of speechmaking. The form here is that of a traditional wedding speech roast; the Best Man shows a lack of respect for things that are generally taken seriously. Simultaneously he's pretending that his comments are unintentionally humiliating. We reckon Harry could have carried this off with panache.
Eager to observe the tradition of gentle character assassination, I started my speech by writing a list of all the wild times from the last ten years; the strip clubs, the dodgy mates, the public gaffes … William, where were you, bro?! And it’s not going to get any better now you’re married, is it? Seriously, though, this speech would’ve been so much easier if you had a past like mine.
The Groom’s Characteristics: Witty and Punchy (You, not him)
(The Groom is bombarded with a succession of one-liners from a Best Man tooled-up for combat.)
A Best Man who’s stood side-by-side with the Groom for many years calls for the audience to join him in celebrating some of his finer characteristics. Gags come thick and fast as the Best Man chronicles the Groom's personal journey. This speech is a lesson in how quick-witted one-liners can work better than lengthy personal accounts.
First, let’s all applaud Paul for his appearance today. He looks wonderful in his wedding getup, and I know he’s worked hard to stay in shape. In fact, for a long time now, Paul has observed a strict fitness regime. Every day, he locks himself in his study and raises his heart beat to double its usual rate for at least ten minutes, while vigorously working specific muscle groups. I think he must have got the idea from a fitness article he read on the internet, because the habit first started just after he got broadband...
Getting the Groom Up To Speed
(The Best Man reveals the Groom’s misguided hopes and expectations for married life to come.)
Does the Groom know what he's let himself in for? If not, you're about to tell him anyway. This speech plays on bringing a naïve Groom up to speed with married life (it doesn't matter if he's actually naïve or not). The Best Man explores the Groom’s idea of what a model husband should be, and how he will likely fail to become such a model husband.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen. My name is Jason and I'm the best man. As they were doing their speeches just now, it struck me how much Paul and his new father-in-law have in common. After all, it's the first time in 25 years that Alan has been able to speak for 10 minutes without interruption from the women in his family. And it'll be the last time in 25 years that Paul gets to do the same. So I sincerely hope he treasures this moment.
Groom’s Principles Explored
(The Best Man discusses the Groom’s outstanding qualities of character in classic roasting format.)
They say you judge a man by his principles. This speech takes a closer look at the so-called ’principles’ of the Groom. In other words, the Best Man takes light-hearted swipes at his mate’s loyalty, commitment and sense of humour.
Linda, if you're looking for loyalty in a relationship, you couldn't have done better than Paul. Here is a man who has had his loyalty tested beyond belief through decades of broken dreams, false hopes and humiliation. Yes, here is a man who has supported QPR his whole life.
Happy Couple’s Romance
(From the first encounter to the marriage proposal; the Best Man takes a trip down memory lane, reliving significant moments that led up to the Big Day.)
Little to say about the Groom? This speech is your saviour. In it the Best Man provides an entertaining account of the defining moments in the happy couple’s romance. Everyone at the wedding knows at least one of the newlyweds, so this kind of wedding speech holds the attention of all who are gathered here today.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen. I would like to begin by thanking Paul for saying all those kind, flattering, and ultimately true things about me. And now, let me return the compliment. After all, where would a bridegroom be without his best man? That encouraging voice which first suggested he go and talk to the beautiful girl, today his wife. That encouraging voice in his ear when she turned him down the first seven times. That discouraging voice which persuaded him ‘enough was enough’ on the stag in THAT club.
A Double Ribbing
(The Best Man ponders how a man with so many foibles can have found true love. Yet he doesn't leave himself out of the firing line either.)
Here's a comical piece that involves oodles of laughs at the Groom's expense. How is it possible to double those laughs? By finding ways to rib yourself, the Best Man, too. Everyone will love that.
Paul and I have known each other for 20 years – and have been friends for almost half of those – so naturally I’ve had plenty of time to discover his many foibles. Some of these, he's had to have surgically removed. The Bride would have you believe that his biggest foible of all is being friends with me.
Facebook Wedding Speech Spoof
(Here's a thoroughly modern wedding speech: The Bride and Groom are represented through their social network profiles. Oh, and don't let the truth get in the way of a good giggle.)
The Best Man uncovers details of the Bride and Groom’s courtship, by way of delving into their online past: How good of you to give the wedding guests a window into the intimate world of the happy couple! If you’re looking for a contemporary approach to wedding speeches, this should inspire you.
As I was writing this speech it occurred to me that a wife is a lot like a PC. Bear with me here. It costs money to get things set up and running. It takes time and attention to keep things moving smoothly. And occasionally you've got to scan for malicious invaders. Paul – I know you won't be tempted to upgrade when the next generation appears on the high street. And remember that Linda is not compatible with floppy discs.
Best Man Role Reversal
(Was the Groom the Best Man at your own wedding? It’s time to return the favour!)
Tug on the audience’s heartstrings by demonstrating the strength of your friendship. In this speech the Best Man charts the Groom’s life to date in a cheeky yet nostalgic fashion. This approach works well if the themes at the centre of the speech are immediately recognizable (think bad hairstyles, taste in music, etc.). As you’ll see from the extract below, the Best Man opens his account with a clear statement of intent.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen. Everyone knows that the two most nervous men at a wedding are invariably the bridegroom and the best man. Well, believe you me, I'm definitely the more nervous of the two. For one, I'm not the best public speaker in the world. Also, I've already been married a year, know what Paul's letting himself in for, and am being nervous on his behalf too.
Best Man Ribbing on a Monumental Scale
(An irreverent speech from a Best Man determined to glean plenty of laughs at the Groom’s expense.)
Want to take a jovial dig at the Groom? In this speech, the Best Man targets the Groom’s career as an accountant, his reputation for being tight with money and his obsession with watching TV. The Best Man explains the challenges these will present to the new Bride. Inserting a short poem towards the end (as this speech does) ensures finishing on a memorable note. Oh, and note how most of the jokes refer to the wedding or marriage itself. A key ingredient for a successful speech!
Paul doesn't do too badly financially, and he knows how to hang onto his wealth too. Just look at the suit he's wearing today. Not only is it woven from the finest mulberry silk, if you look closer you'll see it's tailored to feature shortened arms and extra-deep pockets.
What’s So Special About Him?
(The Best Man lists the Groom’s desirable qualities and explores his suitability to marriage. Qualities and suitability according to the Best Man, that is.)
This speech demonstrates how to compliment the Groom without being overly sentimental, and how to simultaneously roast the Groom without setting him on fire (he’s got the rest of the evening to get through, and so have you). Extract laughs from the Groom‘s argumentative, image conscious and prudent nature.
Paul is a very special person to me. He is a true friend who never ceases to amaze with his kindness, generosity and encouragement. Whenever he's lied to me, it's been for my own protection. Whenever he's struck me in the face, I've deserved it. Whenever he's taken me to court under false accusations of larceny and identity fraud, he's been drunk out of his mind and therefore had no idea what he was doing.
Wedding Toast for an Old Friend
(A Best Man speech peppered with self-deprecating remarks, with a view to getting the crowd on side.)
An old friend pays tribute to his enduring friendship with the Groom and what he means in his life in a light-hearted manner. The Best Man plays on the Groom’s football fanaticism for laughs, and provides a recap of the Groom’s more inebriated exploits. Typical laddy banter then.