People have really started to appreciate the skill that is standup comedy, however, 10 years ago, it was not considered as big a deal, and in fact, you can still find skeptics and naysayers today. However, what a lot of these people fail to realize is that there is more to standup comedy than what meets the eye. There is a lot of planning, information collecting, reviewing, and writing involved. Plus, once a script/set has been written, you then have to go up on stage and then perform in front of strangers, and then based on their response or cues, determine whether your set was successful or not.
There are a couple of legends and renowned names in the standup comedy scene, and if you happen to be interested in watching their sets, you can visit NextUpComedy.com to watch. Think of it like Netflix, but for comedy-related content. Now, the entire process of writing your set involves a lot of thinking and analyzing. Yes, it is important to look at other comedians and try to understand how they write their sets and work with the crowd, and at the same time, it is also important that the act/set you write is entirely your own and unique.
People can spot a copycat quite easily, and your audience is more intelligent than you give them credit for, so you really have to put a lot of thought into the set you write. You do not have to stick to just one type of comedy or jokes, in fact, it is great to expand into different kinds of comedy and to entertain your audience with different kinds of humor and styles so that you are better able to appeal to different crowds and so on.