Comedy Bang Bang!'s Scott Aukerman holds the title of the favoritest of our all-time favorite guests! In his record-breaking 19th appearance on the show, Scott and I discussed the highlights of the 2022 Comedy Bang Bang Oh No! world tour, memories of the Backyard Era, and his plans for 2023. Plus: CBB-TV DVDs, searching for MC Hammer, and updates on "Comedy Bang! Bang! The Podcast: The Book!"
If you would prefer reading the interview instead of listening, please check out the transcript!
[Transcript edited for length and clarity.]
My next guest is the host, star, frontman, MC, head writer and executive producer of the "Universe's Podcast," Comedy Bang Bang. Let's visit once again with perhaps the favoritest of all our favorite guests. It is Scott Aukerman. Hey, Scott!
Hey, Ryan. Nice to talk to you. You know, when you said MC, you forgot to add “Hammer” at the end of it. But thank you. Great intro.
Are we burying the lede here? That you, in fact, are MC Hammer?
Have you ever seen MC Hammer or me in the same place at the same time? I don't think so.
I mean, you could say that about MC Hammer and the majority of people, but I guess that logic could work out.
You’ve never seen me touch anything, right? I mean, he can't touch this, and I can't touch anything.
Scott, how are you? How are things going where you are?
Things are great. I'm here in sunny California and the sun is out, and also the sun rose this morning. A lot of sun-related things happening today.
Oh good! Because we're in the middle of a bomb cyclone with six inches of snow in an hour.
Ooh. I would hate to be you or any of your listeners. Merry Christmas!
Yeah. It's really put a damper on the Backyard Era of this show. Speaking of which, the Comedy Bang Bang Backyard Era - that's over, correct? You've returned full-time to the Earwolf Studios?
Well, we'll see, won't we? There may be some backyard things happening in the future. That's a little tease for the future. There may be some -- does anyone know what we're talking about?
I guess I would assume the only people listening to this are fans of yours and/or mine, but no. So we could say for a while during the Covid era, you were recording shows from home.
I was recording shows in my backyard, hence the name “The Backyard Era.” And by all accounts people enjoyed it. They were very loose, very fun and relaxed. So now with Covid coming back, we may be returning to the Backyard era. We don't know.
There's a piece of animation out there featuring an interview that you did with the Minksalmon Brothers, which by the way is one of my favorite bits ever on Comedy Bang Bang. And that was animated in your backyard, which made me think of that.
Yeah, they animated it literally in my backyard. There is a condition in animation that you have to animate it wherever it was recorded. Unfortunately, we recorded that in the backyard, so I had to get the whole animation team back here.
Scott, I have to tell you, I loved seeing Comedy Bang Bang Live back in August. Just great to see live comedy again, and I appreciate it. Thank you for a great night out.
Oh, my pleasure. Did you pay for those tickets or…?
No, they were courtesy of you, so I sincerely appreciate it.
Oh, okay. Well, I was wondering why you hadn't Venmoed me yet. So you thought they were free? Okay, that's good to know. I'm gonna have to move some numbers around and call my accountant, but we can work that out.
The tickets said “Zero (dollars)” and “Comp,” so I guess that means something different than I thought?
Oh yeah, the show was a zero on a scale of zero to 10 and Comp stood for comparable to other shows. So it's a zero compared to other shows that you would see at the same time.
But how was it like to get back out on the road with the show? What felt the same, what was different this time in a kind-of-but-not-quite post-Covid era?
Yeah, we were very worried about one of us getting Covid and the whole tour derailing. Luckily, a few of us had had it recently when we started the show. So a few of us were relatively sure that we wouldn't get it again so soon.
But mainly we were very worried about Brett, who records the shows and sets everything up, that he was gonna get it and he didn't. We were very lucky. Only two people got it and couldn't join us. Jason Mantzoukas was going to be at a few shows toward the end but he couldn’t, and another person got it and couldn’t do the LA show, but other than that we were pretty lucky when it came to that.
Do you think it hurt attendance, because you came out at the Chicago Theater and said, “I'm proud to announce we have sold out…exactly half the tickets!”
Yeah, it did. I think everyone's kind of going through this when touring. It's a combination of every act wanted to get out there and tour the minute it was safe again. So yeah, there's just like a million things to go see and you can't see them all.
And then there are other people who are still feeling like they're not comfortable in an environment where there's so many people. So yeah, every act from what I've heard across the board kind of suffered in attendance a little bit, but for us it's like we were just happy to be out there. I mean, it's not like we sold out the Chicago Theater the last time we were there. I think it was only about two-thirds full. So half-full is good enough for us this time.
Well, I appreciate the honesty though, to come out and say that right at the beginning, because you're not gonna get that kind of frank update at a rock concert.
We are the most honest act that you can go see live. In fact, that's one thing a lot of people don't know is “ask us anything” when we're on stage and we have to tell the truth. It's really a bad policy for me because I've ruined relationships, all my affairs have come out, my illegitimate children. It's been really bad, but the audience loves it. They love shouting stuff out to us and us having to answer honestly, so we just decided to go ahead with it.
But what a treat you had for the Chicago fans. You had the greatest of all time, His Airness, Michael Jordan walks out, seemingly there only to get upset and take things personally.
Yeah, that was very fun. I don't think he'd ever been on the show before, but it was really fun to talk to him and, and we had a couple of Chicago natives – or if they weren't natives, people who have lived there for a really long time. Tawny Newsome, I think lived there for 15 years and did Second City. It was a really fun show.
MJ played by Carl Tart. The last time you were in Chicago, he was the chief from Carmen San Diego, he’s of course the co-lead singer of Memphis Kansas Breeze. He becoming the next Paul F. Tompkins of podcast guests.
He is, We've talked about it and he really wants to eclipse Paul F. Tompkins and kind of embarrass him and make him a “laughing stock,” is one of the words and phrases that he said to me.
Scott, I was kind of disappointed to see there wasn't a deluxe 10-year anniversary Blu-Ray box set of season one of Comedy Bang Bang the TV series.
Yeah, so was I! I don't know how to get that going. I think there is a little bit of demand for it, and I've reached out to people who would be able to give me some guidance on that, and I haven't heard anything back. But, yeah, maybe it's the 10 years after we are done, so that would be in another four years or so - I'm not quite sure. But I'm very proud of that show and I think anyone who revisits it or anyone who sees it for the first time is struck by how much work we put into it and how funny it still is. So, you know, it keeps getting an audience, and hopefully we'll be able to put something out in the next decade.
Scott, the first time you and I talked was when you were doing a media tour to promote the season one DVD back in 2013. And I'm gonna release a deluxe 10-year anniversary box set of that interview sometime next year.
Okay. How long was that interview? About 10 minutes?
Yeah, maybe eight or nine.
Well, are there any deleted scenes? I don't remember talking to you any longer than that.
Maybe about two seconds before we went on and we got a level from you!
Scott, before we let you go, we can open up the plug bag. Is there anything you’d like to mention?
Well, Comedy Bang Bang: The Podcast, The Book. We made a book, it's coming out in April, and essentially it's all your favorite characters from the Comedy Bang Bang Podcast writing their own pieces and doing advertisements and essays and art pieces. We’re very proud of it, and that comes out in April. I think everyone can pre-order it right now. And we're hoping that it sells more than one of the Obama books -- at least one of the Obama books.
Can I pre-order a signed copy?
You could have if you had gotten in there and did it, but I believe they're all sold out now.
Wow. So they're pre-sold out.
Yeah, I signed around 8,000 of them, and I believe they're all sold out. So you snooze, you lose, as I've heard many times throughout my life, but I do think the week it comes out, they'll release some of those that they have in reserve.
Your home for all things Scott is Comedy Bang Bang World. New episodes of the “Galaxy’s Podcast,” Comedy Bang Bang are out every week. Scott, thanks once again for joining me, and I hope you have a wonderful New Year.
Ryan, happy holidays. Always a pleasure to talk to you, and nothing makes me happier than getting that email saying “Do you want to talk to Ryan again,” and me writing back and saying, “Sure.”