The reality of dating is hard. You have to take people out to restaurants and have interesting meaningful conversations and then if things go well, you have to invite a relative stranger over to your living space. It can be a true nightmare. Now imagine you’re trying to navigate the same landscape but your date is an actual troll, her friend is a Japanese monster, and Cupid is high on coedine.
Thankfully, you have a friend in Eric Andre.
You may remember him from movies like The Internship or TV shows like Two Broke Girls. You may have seen him on his hilarious parody talk show The Eric Andre Show. You may have even seen his stand up comedy. Currently you can find him on FXX’s hit Man Seeking Woman. It’s a completely surreal look at modern dating with Jay Baruchell playing Josh Greenberg, a man trying desperately to cope with a big break up and move on in a dating world filled with monsters and magic and general mayhem. Eric plays Mike, Josh’s best friend/wingman.
We got the opportunity to sit in on a panel with Eric to talk about his dating life, the evolution of Josh and his chemistry with Jay Baruchel.
Man Seeking Woman is a pre-scripted series, so how much of your character is you, and how much of him is not you? Is there a lot of you in the character?
Yes. I improvise a lot, and they actually end up using some of the stuff I improvise. The character I take from all of the biggest douchebags I grew up with in Florida and I channel them and put them into Mike.
Is he a guy you would hang out with in normal life?
No. I would run for the hills.
You’re single, but how do you usually meet the women that you usually go out with. I mean, this is Man Seeking Woman.
I just cruise around community colleges in my GL, in my Toyota Corolla, lurking. I’m a lurker. I’m a creep.
And the real answer?
I’m no good. I can’t stop from bleeding internally. I sleep standing up, like a horse. [Speaking Spanish] Danke Schoen.
Do you have a favorite episode or a scene that you worked on?
We’ve got one in the episode coming up in the bro shelter, there’s a funny dinner scene that I’m excited about.
How is it working with Jay on screen compared to off screen? Do you guys still have the chemistry?
Jay’s the best. He’s a maniac. He’s a smart, smart cookie. He’s coming up with funny; he’s a real funny guy. The good thing is he’s a writer as well as an actor so I can always go to him for funny lines.
Your character is basically the moral center of the show, in that everybody should do the opposite of what he says; do you think we’ll ever get a piece of good advice from Mike?
I think so, with time. In [a recent] episode, we saw some softer sides of Mike. Towards the end of the season, the subtle nuances of Mike’s character will come out where he’s a bit of a walking contradiction. He has a softer; or he’s in touch with his feminine side more than we think, eventually.
He gets his penis removed in the last episode. Spoiler alert. The old penile removal.
What do you think Mike sees in Josh that most people don’t?
I think there’s an inner playboy in Josh that Mike is trying to channel. They have a Mr. Miyagi – Ralph Macchio kind of relationship sometimes there I think he’s trying to change. He sees potential. He thinks Josh is like the young grasshopper, and his flower is waiting to blossom like a Georgia O’Keeffe painting.
One of our favorite things about your comedic style is you do a hilarious dead-pan delivery. Do you ever have any issues on set; like you’re doing an absurd scene, and you just can’t keep a straight face?
Yes. Constantly. I’m not a very good actor, so I break character all the time.
Mike staged an intervention for Josh a little bit earlier in the season when he was getting too serious about Kayla. Why do you think it’s important for Mike that Josh is single?
I think Mike always needs a wing man. I think it’s for selfish needs. Also, I think Mike is a little jealous. That’s his bro. He doesn’t want anybody to take his bro away from him.
You said we were going to see a little bit of a softer side for Mike a little bit later in the season, but do you think he’ll ever get a serious girlfriend, or will want to?
Maybe with time. Mike’s a complex individual. His brain is like a Rubik’s Cube with some of the pieces missing, so you never know if you got it correctly.
Do you have any trouble pigeon-holing the idea of the show to pitch it to people to tell them what you’re doing?
It’s not easy. I say cartoon come to life. I say John Cusack Rom-Com mixed with a Salvador Dali painting. I say the Meg Ryan movie You’ve Got Mail on Peyote. It’s a psychedelic Rom-Com.
One of my favorite shows that got canceled was actually Don’t Trust the B in Apartment 23. How would you contrast between Mark and Mike because I feel they have some similarities, but they’re also extremely different in the way that they come off?
Yes. I’d say that—shit, I’m driving like an asshole. I think Mark is sackless. He’s like a sackless beta male. And Mike is a cocky chauvinist sociopath. So, pretty big contrast.
Do you think that Josh and Mike have a symbiotic relationship, as in Josh needs Mike as much as Mike needs Josh?
I think so a little bit. There’s a little bit of co-dependency in their relationship. For sure.
How would you separate Mike from other best friend characters. Do you really approach it differently or are you just like man this is, or is it just pure Id, totally?
A little more of the latter. I think it’s pure Id, but it has some of that classic; I get my best friend into shitty circumstances. I don’t know. I think it’s just pure Id, and I’m just pulling from all the kids I hated in high school.
Can you talk at all about the next few episodes, just tell us a little bit about what’s coming up for your character?
My character goes into a parallel universe. What else? I’m trying to figure out what I can say, that’s why. My character pisses off Josh and his new girlfriend and goes into a shelter for bros, a bro shelter, instead of a dog shelter. I can’t remember what else is coming up. Oh, the ninth episode—I don’t know what I can or can’t say. There’s always pressure to not spoil stuff. I don’t want to bum anybody at FXX out.
Matthew Nando Kelly is an incredibly cool and handsome staff writer for Pop-Break who was allowed to write his own bio. Aside from weekly Flash reviews, he writes about film, television, music, and video games. Matthew also has a podcast called Mad Bracket Status where he discusses pop culture related brackets with fellow Pop-Break writer DJ Chapman. He loves U2, cats, and the New Orleans Saints. He can also occasionally be found writing lists on Topless Robot and his twitter handle is @NationofNando