Tim and Eric … and David
Adult Swim stars Tim and Eric bring along a friend for their interview
Trying to describe the comedy of Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim is a lot like telling someone about a dream you had. Whatever may have seemed funny, frightening, prophetic or profound through the veil of sleep comes across sounding, at best, silly and a little disturbing.
A randomly selected YouTube clip from Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! serves as a prime example: A scantily clad pregnant woman sits in a blow-up recliner on a badly computer-generated deserted island floating over an equally badly rendered lake of fire. She implores a line of suitors to “Make her bub bubs bounce.” Three try and fail, fall through a hole and burn in the lake. Then a bald guy in denim parachutes in and impresses her with his dancing, so he dives into her stomach and dances with two goateed fetuses. Then they rip out of her stomach and the whole island flies away. Fin.
Some call it stupid; other people label it surrealist humor. Whatever it is, Heidecker and Wareheim have parlayed their mixture of absurdity, satire, purposely low production values and nonsequitur delivery into a successful career and the self-described “nightmare version of television.”
Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! has run five seasons on Adult Swim, the for-mature-audiences channel that takes over Cartoon Network at night. They have yet to commit to a sixth in order to film a big-budget feature film produced by friend and fan Will Ferrell and to do an annual live tour, which brings them to the El Rey Theatre Nov. 4 accompanied by fellow freak Neil Hamburger.
Show regular David Liebe Hart, whom the duo discovered doing puppet shows on Los Angeles cable access and may well be certifiably insane, accompanied them in a recent phone interview that answered plenty of unasked questions and amounted to … well, you decide.
Tim: Hey man, this is Tim.
Eric: Eric Wareheim here, how are ya, bud?
David: Hi there, this is David, pleased to meet you how ya doing? I just wanna praise God for Tim and Eric making me so successful. I wouldn’t have the success if it wasn’t for them, for the four years I worked on their show, I’m grateful for all the fame and success they’ve helped me to get on the Internet.
Hart continues to poke at Tim and Eric for not including him in the upcoming tour and lists places to buy past seasons of the show for a few minutes.< p>David: I explained to several of the fans that I’m glad they’re giving Neil Hamburger a chance, Neil Hamburger is a great guy, I performed at his night club, and he’s a real funny guy, and he’s even a talented musician as well, and it’s good for them to move things around for a change. Yeah, and I feel that the fans just need to grow up because you can’t always get what you want and they should be grateful for the work I’ve done in the past. I’m on season one through five …
Tim: You already covered that.
David: Hey, I didn’t tell you this but I did a play called Porgy and Bess in the ’60s …
Hart prattles on for several more minutes about Norman Lear, The Andy Griffith Show and other topics. I realize I’m being had, but dive in during a brief lull and attempt to redirect the conversation to the upcoming live show.
Ken: Other than stand-up and the earlier tours, do you guys have any other stage experience?
Tim: I have no formal theater training. We played in some bands back when we lived in Philly and New York.
Eric: I had some formal theater training as a child.
David: I’ve been working with both of them and they’re both very good actors and very talented people. I’ve studied acting, I worked at Goodman Theater back in Chicago, and I went to different places, like L.A. City College …
Hart talks another several minutes about The Carol Burnett Show and God knows what else.
Tim: Sorry, we’ve got to move on to the Denver Post.
Ken: Uhhhh …
Eric: Yeah, we’re in the middle of a press blitz and rehearsals here.
Tim: All right, guys, we gotta run. Thanks a lot, Ken!