Eric Andre on Being 'The Worst Talk Show Host In History' On His Adult Swim Show
On Cartoon Network’s edgy Adult Swim block, there’s no tame, family-friendly animation to be found. So it’s only fitting that their interpretation of a late-night chatfest—The Eric Andre Show, now in its fourth season—is equally subversive.
The series features comedian Eric Andre and his straight-faced sidekick, Hannibal Buress (Broad City), sending up the genre by impersonating, as he puts it, “the worst talk-show host in history.” That’s no exaggeration. Each 11-minute episode is a chaotic mélange composed of segments with rattled celebrity guests—ludicrous pranks, like a fake squid popping out of the floor mid-interview, are devised to make them uncomfortable—and outrageous hidden-camera stunts.
When we spoke with the fearless Andre, he had just spent a few gleefully disruptive days crashing the Republican National Convention. “I almost got beaten up by some ‘Bikers for Trump’ Hells Angels,” he says. “It got pretty hairy.” Here, he offers a glimpse into his bizarro world.
Your alter ego is a manic sociopath. Are fans surprised to find out that it’s an act?
I’m definitely not as exciting as my persona. I meditate twice a day. Sometimes I’ll get kids coming up to me, screaming and punching, and they can’t figure out why I’m not being crazy back to them. I’m thinking, “Dude, it’s lunchtime and I’m just trying to grab a sandwich.”
What are some of your favorite ways to mess with guests?
We’ve released vermin—cockroaches, rats and snakes—shocked people with electrodes, had a Teamster fall out of the sky, set off firecrackers.…
At this point, don’t they see the shenanigans coming?
A lot of them really don’t do any research. This season, we put the fear of God into [Fox News contributor] Stacey Dash. Abby Lee Miller from Dance Moms is another one. Before the taping, she asked our assistant director, “What is this show?” We were like, “Yes! She knows nothing!” I don’t think she enjoyed herself too much.
Kelly Osbourne and Amber Rose also have upcoming turns in the hot seat. How’d they fare?
We definitely freaked Kelly out, but her dad is Ozzy Osbourne, and she’s a tough cookie. And Amber Rose and I ended up dating after the show—so she didn’t take it too badly!
The Eric Andre Show, Season premiere, Friday, August 5, midnight/11c, Adult Swim