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DID YOU READ

Scott Aukerman Dishes on the Comedy Bang! Bang! Musical Extravaganza

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Do you hear the people sing? This Friday you will, as Comedy Bang! Bang! takes a page from the Great White Way. Casey Wilson—along with special guests Thomas Lennon and Paul F. Tompkins—joins Scott Aukerman and Reggie Watts for musical extravaganza inspired by the works of Andrew Lloyd Webber, who also happens to make an appearance (sort of). We spoke with Scott about the influences behind the episode, his background in theater and why he thinks Les Mis is “strange.”

When studying musical theater, were you planning on taking the comedy route or did you have interests in dramatic acting?

When I was studying acting, I was mainly focusing on musical theater. I did productions of Jesus Christ Superstar, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Oklahoma, and West Side Story. But I also studied Shakespeare (aka “The Immortal Bard”) and dramatic acting as well. Additionally, I would write dramatic plays in my spare time and put up productions of them. But, being so interested in comedy, that’s where my interests mainly lied. My friends always told me that my comedic writing was way better than my dramatic writing, and that I should maybe go into comedy. And the rest is her-story!

When did the idea strike you for a musical episode of Comedy Bang! Bang!? Is it something you wanted to do since the first season?

It’s kind of a long-standing tradition for a TV show to do a musical episode. Lots of series have done it. So it’s something that’s been in the back of our minds for a while. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer one is a recent standout. They came up with an excellent reason WHY it was happening, which was something we were very concerned about as well. We wrote about ten drafts of the script, and, in the early ones, there was no rhyme or reason to it—we all just were singing all the time. But once we hit on the storyline that ended up in the episode, everything else fell into place.

What are some of your Broadway influences?

I was super-into Mandy Patinkin as a high schooler—I would sit in my room, singing “Finishing the Hat” all day. We put him into the Mr. Show movie because I was so obsessed with him—and I got to act in a scene with him. About a year ago, Kulap and I went to see him and Patti LuPone do their two-person Broadway show, and it was fantastic! I’ve always wanted to do Sweeney Todd, as well.

There are hilarious parodies in the episode of famous Les Misérables songs (ex. “I Dreamed a Dream”). Are you a fan Tom Hooper’s film adaptation?

I think that’s generally just a weird musical. I’ve seen three different productions of it, and the movie, and it’s just so strange. The plot doesn’t make a lot of sense, when you think about it. I think the cast of the movie falls into two different catagories—those who can sing, and those who can’t. It’s pretty painful when you’re listening to the latter.

What’s your favorite Andrew Lloyd Weber song?

I love Jesus Christ Superstar—I got to understudy the part of Jesus once, and it was always my dream to play it. I would probably say “Gethsemene,” which I would sing all the time. When I was in my old band, I used to play a mash-up of that song, along with XTC’s “Dear God,” which have similar chord structures and themes.

Want the latest news from Comedy Bang! Bang!? Like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter @comedybangbang and use the hashtag #cbbtv.

Comedy Bang! Bang! airs on IFC on Fridays at 10/9c

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Rev Up

Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Give Back

Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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It’s the final countdown to Christmas and thanks to IFC’s movie marathon all Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, you can revel in classic ’80s films AND find inspiration for your last-minute gifts. Here are our recommendations, if you need a head start:

Musical Instrument

Great analog entertainment substitute when you refuse to give your kid the Nintendo Switch they’ve been drooling over.

Breakfast In Bed

Any significant other or child would appreciate these Uncle Buck-approved flapjacks. Just make sure you’re not stuck on clean up duty.

Cocktail Supplies

You’ll need them to get through the holidays.

Dance Lessons

So you can learn to shake-shake-shake (unless you know ghosts willing to lend a hand).

Comfy Clothes

With all the holiday meals, there may be some…embigenning.



Get even more great inspiration all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC, and remember…

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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GIFs via Giphy

Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

via GIPHY

Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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