Michael Showalter talks to the stars of MTV’s hysterical new series, Human Giant
In “Rob’s Vagina,” a sketch on MTV’s new comedy show, Human Giant, Rob Huebel’s career takes off when paparazzi-style pictures of his “vagina” are leaked to the Internet. Though totally absurd, it’s an interesting comment on celebrity and a refreshingly smart turn for a network that’s been relying on the lowest form of toilet humor for nearly a decade. In fact, Human Giant just might be MTV’s best chance for recapturing some of its street cred from the early ’90s—those pre-reality TV days—when the channel gave cult comedy troupe The State its own sketch show.
In a transparent effort to belabor the point, Radar recruited State alum Michael Showalter to get on the phone with Huebel and his Human Giant co-stars Aziz Ansari and Paul Scheer, to talk about their new show, the tricks of getting racy material past MTV’s standards and practices department, and Showalter’s enduring influence on all alternative comics who’ve followed him.
MICHAEL SHOWALTER: Hey, guys. Congrats on the new show.
PAUL SCHEER: Thanks. I love that CollegeHumor thing you guys did; that Huckabees clip was really funny.
Thank you. You guys should come and be a guest on the show (The Michael Showalter Showalter), it would be all three of you.
ROB HUEBEL: That’ll be fun as shit, man.
We’ll set it up. Okay, about Human Giant. Do you guys read your own press? Do you read the reviews?
AZIZ ANSARI: It’s crazy, in the past couple years, any time someone shits on you, you can find out right away on news.google or blogsearch.google. As soon as anyone insults your creative work, you can find out instantly. So we read all the reviews.
HUEBEL: There was this one review where the writer said she couldn’t enjoy the show because she didn’t understand what “Human Giant” meant, and she couldn’t get past that. So she just sat there and criticized us because she didn’t understand what the name of the show meant. For the first paragraph, she just starts off like, “Human Giant. What is it? Is it a show about giants? I mean, why would they call the show that?”
Do you get sick of your stock answer for how you came up with the name? Don’t you just want to say, “Go read another interview where we answered that question”?
SCHEER: The first three questions are always the same: How’d you guys meet? What does the name mean? Why did you decide to go to MTV? Those are the first three questions always.
Can I stop you for a second?
How did you guys meet?
SCHEER: Ha! Seriously though, I think all of us now just take turns answering that question. Aziz at one point came up with an idea that we should give everybody a one-page answer to these questions and then say, “Interview us after you read this.”