On June 29, 2017, I had the pleasure of seeing Barry Rothbart perform stand-up at Punchline SF. If you haven’t seen his act, I highly recommend it. He’ll be hitting the road this summer, so stay tuned for announcements on his Twitter page and Facebook page. The funny thing is that both Rothbart and his opening act, @midnight‘s Dave Thomason, delivered laugh-out-loud hilarious bits about dogs. Rothbart even started to sound like Martin at one point, which was awesome.
After the show, he graciously joined me for a drink and candid chat (hence “Cocktails & Conversation”) in the greenroom. You can listen our full conversation in the video above, (there’s mild swearing, ‘Downward Dog’ Season 1 spoilers and a lot of laughs).
Until you have a chance to listen to all the fun banter, here are some highlights:
Rothbart got his start in stand-up and was even part of the original Upright Citizens Brigade improv troupe. (By the way, if you’ve already list to the podcast, Entertainment Weekly has the full story on A.S.S.S.C.A.T’s reunion performance: HERE.)
He explains how Kevin is not a bad guy, he’s just a Steve Jobs wannabe. Rothbart wanted to make sure the character was not one-dimensional, so the writers created a sad home life (like his abusive wife), to explain Kevin’s behavior at work. Also, Rothbart is nothing like his character. We all know Kevin comes-off in an unflattering light (to put it kindly), but the actor is super sweet. If you want to hate on a character, don’t address that hatred towards the actor because there is a difference.
We debate how Timothy Omundson’s look was enhanced to make him appear more like Lucas Neff. Did they add extra hair to his beard or his luscious locks? #KingsBeard or #EricsLocks Weigh-in on Twitter (@TalkTVwTiffany) or in the comments below.
Yes, Rothbart did improvise the “Sexy Old Jesus” line. However, the first time around he called Eric “Sexy Jesus.” Omundson went up to him and said to add “Old”…the rest is history.
Rothbart says the writers already have some great ideas for next season. I joke about Martin getting a girlfriend (Hey, it can happen!). Rothbart hilariously teases that Martin will take a vow of silence because that’ll be ideal for a talking dog show. I guess a dog whisperer could always translate his thoughts for the audience 😉
After our chat, all of these jokes got me thinking: Is Martin even neutered? It would probably make a difference in his dating life. If not, can you imagine an episode centered on that topic? They’d have to call it “Balls”…right?!?
Rothbart loves the whole cast, but he’s been best buds with Neff way before ‘Downward Dog.’ He’s bummed they weren’t able to share any scenes together on the show.
He adorably gushes about how much he loves Neff, prompting this image (courtesy of my sister because I don’t have the Photoshop skills). Hopefully, Kevin and Jason will be able to spend some quality time together in Season 2.
We also talk about how much he loves his new dog, Tyra, who is giving him serious side-eye in this photo he tweeted. Isn’t she adorable?!
A story about her is featured in his stand-up and it is ridiculously funny. You’ll have to go see him to hear it…Unless he’s willing to tweet you a teaser.
Rothbart is genuinely moved by the outpouring of love for ‘Downward Dog’ and the fans’ efforts to #SaveDD. Be sure to keep checking back for updates on the #MoreDD Campaign HERE.
Were you surprised by anything Rothbart revealed? Do you have any favorite moments from our chat? Is there anything you wish we discussed that we didn’t get around to?Share your thoughts on “Cocktails & Conversation” below!
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