How'd you feel when you found out your character had been killed off, and that you'd be immediately brought back as his identical twin brother?
I can't remember when I found out about it, but I didn't know that was going to happen during the audition. I thought I was just going for the role of Shane. They were writing as we went, so I didn't find out until we were down there and getting ready to do the part and someone said, "Well you know what happens, don't you?" Until then, I didn't know I died.
Did you enjoy playing two identical though completely opposite characters?
I was delighted by it. It's a fun thing to get to do, to play within a single storyline a big broad comedic character and a straight man. It's almost like the kind of work I'm used to doing at Saturday Night Live, going from one sketch to the next. I enjoyed being Kenny Powers cohort, and then right after that playing someone who is disturbed and frustrated by him.
Was Shane or Cole more of a stretch for you to play? Which do you relate to more?
Probably Cole, because I was forced to play Shane right-handed.
Did you draw on any of your experience as an athlete to portraying Shane?
I must have, though maybe not consciously. There was no character journal. But we were surrounded by a bunch of real athletes. I didn't take anything specific, just the posture and an overall sense of irresponsibility. It's not too dissimilar to what I do now, I'm an adult who gets to put on a skit show every week. If I were a professional athlete, I'd probably say, "Look at this, I get to play a game for a living." It doesn't necessarily lead to the most adult perspective on life.
Who has better form as an athlete, you or Danny McBride?
I think I do. That's part of the joke-Danny and Ike [Bariholtz] just aren't that great pitchers. That's not even talking trash; there's a lot of empirical evidence to support that.
What do you make of Ivan Dochenko?
I've known Ike since 1997 when we were doing improv in Chicago as part of a show called J.T.S. Brown. As a fan of this show, I love it. I don't know if he can get nominated for an Oscar for a television show, but I'd love to see Ike in the mix. I mean, the guy is neither an athlete nor Russian, though that it is his actual hair.
How'd you like driving the truck?
I've driven a Chevy Blazer and a Chevy Montero so I'm used to being up off the ground. I also have a tendency, based on my athletic background and also video games, to drive a little quicker and dodge through traffic like an Italian on a Vespa. Then they put those doors on and some steel nuts on the trailer hitch, and I sent pictures to all my friends saying, "This is what I'm doing this summer."
Will we be seeing any more of Shane or Cole?
Who knows? I don't think Shane is coming back because he's dead, but crazier things have happened on television. We could all be in Shane's dream. We could find out that it was like 'An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge,' and these next episodes are part of my hallucinations while overdosing. Next thing you know, it's a smash cut to me on a gurney. Then Kenny and I get a civil union--you know, if the show wants to go that political route.
Do we need to include a spoiler alert at this point?
Just cover the text up and move the cursor to reveal.
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