During the summer of 2006 I relocated to Astoria, majesties with 2 of my best friends. I had a few hundred dollars in my financial institution account, no job, and a one month sublet. After a year of consistent failure in the huge Apple, ns retreated to western Massachusetts come lick mine wounds and also regroup. Unemployment and very down ~ above myself, I began a Blogger account and also interviewed anyone who would offer me the moment of day.

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As a lifelong fan of MTV’s mid-90s map out comedy show The State, I determined I would try to interview every 11 cast members. If my job wasn’t a total success, I had the ability to interview nine members that The State over the food of the following year. When I spoke to Ken Marino, whose current successes incorporate appearances in HBO’s Eastbound & Down, Netflix’s reboot of Wet warm American Summer, the Goosebumps movie, and several other amazing upcoming films, he was basic to talk to and hilarious. Diggers, which he wrote and also acted in, had actually just been released, and he was working on Role Models and The Ten through David Wain. It to be an exciting time in his career and I am grateful I had the opportunity to catch some that his storage of The State. Thank you Ken, for giving me a morale boost when ns was desperate for one and for sharing some gems indigenous your early years in comedy.


“Louie to be our rebellious effort at saying, ‘Screw you, we don’t want to do recurring characters, so we’re going to give you one that can’t go anywhere.’”


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Gino: when it was recorded, The State’s album Comedy for Gracious Living sat on a shelf because that 14 years before being released. What was it favor making the record?

Ken Marino: It’s no our most brilliant work. It’s got some funny things on the though. Warner Brothers payment for us to go to the Bahamas and record it. Lock didn’t in reality pay us to go there. They just paid us, and also we take it the small bit the money us had and also were like, “Instead of just spending this money on beer in ~ the Barrow Street Ale house in Manhattan or ours rent, stop go down to the Bahamas and record it.” So we did. We were in the Bahamas for 2 weeks yet we no make any kind of money on the album. (Laughs)

“We take it the small bit the money us had and also were like, ‘Instead of just spending this money ~ above beer at the Barrow Street Ale house in Manhattan or our rent, let’s go under to the Bahamas and record it.’”

Gino: Well, at the very least you gained to go to the Bahamas for two weeks.

Ken Marino: It to be awesome, we had a good time. Ns don’t know if it aided the album. We were fifty percent drunk most of the time. Ns think the the skit with Joe and Showalter wherein you deserve to actually hear the ice cream in the glass when they’re trying to go with the skit. Very professional.


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Gino: I need to ask you wherein the Louie character come from. That’s one of the most renowned skits from The State.

Ken Marino: Louie come from MTV wanting united state to have recurring characters. Us didn’t desire to carry out that in ~ first, so Louie was our rebellious effort at saying, “Screw you, we don’t desire to execute recurring characters, for this reason we’re going to provide you one the can’t go anywhere.” The story behind Louie’s catch phrase is quite funny. It involves two look at unrelated things. David Wain used to pole his hands under his trousers a lot, and there was a large jar that peanut butter that john Stewart left in ~ my workdesk that I would certainly eat. One day, David come over and opened the peanut butter, took his hands the end of his pants, and also stuck his fingers in my peanut butter and started eating it. Ns was like, “Dave, why don’t you just dip her balls in it.” ns was a small upset. I think i screamed the at him.

We started saying, “I want to dip my balls in it.” So us thought, “Ah, how about that because that a record phrase because that our unusable recurring character.” us were walking to carry out a recurring personality that never recurred. But it kind of backfired, since MTV said, “Yeah, us love that guy, lug him back.” so we had to write more sketches for Louie, that was kind of a dead end character. But we actually wound up comes up with some an innovative stuff because that him. Ns think “Louie and also The critical Supper” is the best one. If MTV no ask us to carry it back, that wouldn’t have been a repeat character.


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“I was like, ‘Dave, why nothing you just dip your balls in it.’ i was a little upset. I think ns screamed the at him.”

Gino: it is a good back story.

Ken Marino: Yeah, us really didn’t desire to carry out recurring characters. Because that some reason we thought, “That’s too lot like SNL. We don’t desire to just do recurring characters. We want to execute situational stuff. Lol blah blah.” however then of food we finished up law recurring characters, and we chosen them.

Gino: it is funny, when I interviewed Kevin Allison, he claimed the very same thing about the kind of humor you to be going for.

Ken Marino: Yeah, and we grounding to that. However we uncovered that we can do a recurring character here and there. Once we started writing stuff, we realized if you provided a an excellent recurring character, you had a better chance of acquiring your stuff on the show. If girlfriend brought earlier a character that was well liked, possibilities are you will do have an ext screen time. That added to the trusted competitiveness in ~ the group. Us would constantly bargain v each other like, “Alright, I’ll give you this component if you provide me that component in her script.”


“What’s wonderful around The State is we didn’t rest up since we hated every other. We just damaged up since we weren’t making any money and also everyone had to go find a paycheck somewhere.”

Gino: for such a big entity that damaged up so long ago, it’s exceptional that everyone from The State is quiet friends and also continues to occupational on projects together. Did girlfriend ever worry that the relationships with the various other members would fizzle out?

Ken Marino: No. Ns didn’t worry about my an individual relationship fizzling out since we made an effort to store in touch and also they were all friends the mine. And also professionally…because they were my friends, we continued to be in touch, and they were every talented. Ns knew us would proceed to collaborate ~ above things. Half of the team lives in L.A. And half of the team lives in NYC, therefore it’s not the easiest thing to obtain the whole group together. But I nothing doubt that us will continue to job-related together in smaller teams if no as a totality for the remainder of our careers.

We have a bond and a respect because that each various other as performers. Over there is a to trust within the group. I understand I can call up everyone in the group and know what ns going to get. For me, I would invite them into anything the I’m functioning on and also I think the emotion is mutual. Those wonderful around The State is us didn’t rest up because we hated every other. Us just damaged up due to the fact that we no making any type of money and everyone had to go discover a paycheck somewhere. However we’re every very an excellent friends, and that hasn’t changed.

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I to be a manager of scholastic support/special education and learning teacher that loves come write around books, movies, music, records, and samplers. I likewise love interviewing people about these things. If you delighted in this piece, please think about sharing the on Facebook, Twitter, and also recommending the on allisonbrookephotography.com.