Into the great weird open
Comedians Tim and Eric talk about what makes them tick in a most peculiar fashion – and tell us they aren’t the American Mighty Boosh...
The Hot Press Newsdesk, 19 Jul 2011
Over the past few years, Tim and Eric have quietly become one of the best comedy acts around, with their psychedelic brand of twisted humour (if David Lynch – an acknowledged T&E influence – ever turned his hand to comedy sketches, it would probably come out something like this) winning a sizeable cult audience courtesy of the duo’s Adult Swim series, Tim and Eric, Awesome Show, Great Job!
Shortly due to make their European debut at the Iveagh Gardens as part of the Vodafone Comedy Festival, Tim and Eric have made live performance a central part of their work since their early days.
“We’ve always incorporated, since back when we were making our earliest sketches in film school,” explains Tim Heidecker. “There wasn’t really YoutTube or anything like that, so we would go out to rock clubs and show our videos, and then we’d go up and do a little performance. When we got the TV series going, one way to help promote it was to go out there and meet fans, so we put a show together. It’s been fun, it’s totally different from the show in a lot of ways, and it’s enjoyable for us because we get that immediate reaction from the audience, which you don’t get from sitting in an editing suite.”
So what can we expect when the boys hit Dublin?
“We come out and do some characters from the show, and there’s songs and some dancing,” replies Tim. “It’s kind of like a high school musical, with a little R rated quality – a high school musical with poop jokes!”
Tim and Eric’s unique style of humour can be described in many ways, although one word which Tim noticeably shies away from is ‘surreal’, lest people get the impression that there isn’t considerable discipline in the writing and performance, which some of The Mighty Boosh’s detractors claim is a failing in the English duo’s output.
“I kind of have that problem with them,” says Tim. “It’s something that we really work on. It’s very easy to look at our stuff and go, ‘Oh my God, that’s so crazy and absurd’, but we try – and we don’t always succeed – to keep a discipline to it, and make it about something. We don’t just do stuff for the sake of being crazy. ‘Surreal’ is one word for it, but it doesn’t always apply I think. It can mean there’s a loss grounding to it; you see some stuff, and it gets too crazy and you don’t know what it’s about anymore.
“We try to make sure there’s always something grounding it that isn’t just pure fantasy craziness.”