Windows Phones: are they a joke?

No seriously, are they?

I'm in the market for a new phone, and I've been looking at every option, looking at reviews, comparing prices. I've been looking into all the big players in the smartphone market. All except the windows phones. Why? Well they just don't seem to be doing well, and I had been thinking, maybe there is a good reason for that, with Microsoft being the giant that it is advertising and pushing their own smartphone should be a breeze right? So why isn't it selling? Why in the war of smartphones are only iOS and Android ever mentioned? Are windows phones just that big of a failure, or is the market just not aware enough or used to the windows phone enough for it to be popular? What's the deal with these phones, and are they even worth considering?