‘Would I Lie to You?’ Host Aasif Mandvi on Why The CW’s New Series Is ‘Pure Joy’

Would I Lie to You? The CW Aasif Mandvi Matt Walsh
Sally Montana/The CW

Did Richard Kind (Mad About You) once give Paul Newman a piggyback ride? The actor being grilled about that claim on this comedy game show — based on a long-running British hit — may be the funniest three minutes you see on TV.

“Basically, it’s celebrities telling hilarious shaggy dog stories, and other celebrities trying to figure out if they’re telling the truth or bulls–tting. It’s pure joy,” explains host Aasif Mandvi (Evil), who became obsessed with the U.K. original via BritBox, then got his Evil boss Robert King so hooked that King suggested they do an American version.

Would I Lie to You? Aasif Mandvi

(Credit: The CW)

Each episode features two competing teams of three, always captained by Veep vet Matt Walsh (the “best liar,” Mandvi reports) and Carol’s Second Act’s Sabrina Jalees. One recurring game, “This Is…,” trots out a silent mystery guest who has a real connection to one panelist.

In the premiere, Walsh’s team has to decide whether Jean-Luc is a man Kind nicknamed Dr. Beef, a guy who helped Jalees solve a crime or someone Santino Fontana (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend) portrayed in a play.

“People come up with the most extravagant lies,” Mandvi says. “When they’re telling the truth, they’re trying to pretend that they’re lying, and when they’re lying, they’re trying to convince you it’s the truth. You never know!”

Would I Lie to You?, Series Premiere, Saturday, April 9, 8:30/7:30c, The CW