The Eric Andre Show is the first, and perhaps last, talk show of its kind. Shot in Los Angeles in a non-air conditioned studio, sans audience, the titular comedian has on celebrity guests who have no idea what they’re in for as he proceeds to shock and confuse them for laughs. From asking inappropriate questions in rapid succession to fake-defecating on the floor, the comedy show can even veer into body horror territory. Interspersed with the zany interviews are man on the street segments and other hilarious sketches featuring Andre and his sidekick, fellow comedian Hannibal Burress.
While dedicated fans have seen every episode of the five season show, each of which is only around fifteen minutes of runtime, many moments have taken on a life of their own via Youtube and other video-sharing platforms. The magic of the show truly hinged on celebrities not doing their research or otherwise being prepared for what was going to happen in the interviews. When it began to amass a bigger following, even though it brought more A-list names onto the show, the genuine reactions that made the show what it was became a thing of the past. While its special sauce can’t be recreated, we’re lucky enough to be left with hours of side-splitting content on streaming sites, so we can revisit the moments that never get old.
The Lauren Conrad Interview Gets…Messy
Lauren Conrad is one of only two guests in the history of The Eric Andre Show to walk out of the interview. While Eric was up to his usual antics-going as far as to draw a literal swastika on his forehead in red lipstick while talking-it wasn’t until he vomited on his desk and ate it up that the starlet was nauseated enough to leave. The vomit was an oatmeal concoction that he held in his mouth.
Hannibal’s Dad Reveals His True Self
Hannibal Burress, Andre’s sidekick and a brilliant stand-up comedian in his own right, has some episodes where he steals the show. This is one of such episodes, as suddenly in the middle of an interview with Nick Cannon, a strange man wanders on set, with his genitals showing through his unzipped fly, claiming to be Hannibal’s father. Hannibal get’s mad at his long-lost “dad” for interrupting “the biggest interview” of his life. The man tries to apologize, but Hannibal says, “you haven’t been in my life at all, and I’m interviewing Nick Cannon, former R. Kelly collaborator, and stagehands let you walk in here with your d*ck out!” Sufficed to say, Cannon was not pleased.
James Van Der Beek Is Seeing Double
During Dawson’s Creek and Varsity Blues actor James Van Der Beek’s interview, doppelg&ängers of Eric Andre, Hannibal, and James suddenly come out on stage, stand next to their look-alikes, and start repeating every word they say and action they make. Eric and Hannibal pretend not to notice, making James feel like he’s part of a “fever dream”. The hosts and their mimes try to get Van Der Beek to tell them a story, any story, but he’s completely unable to focus.
Wiz Khalifa Is Not Prepared, And Neither Are We
Wiz Khalifa is known for being a chill, pot-loving rapper. While he seems unflappable, Eric pulled out all the stops to freak out the notably calm celebrity, who ultimately covers his eyes while Eric pummels a naked production assistant. From raccoons wandering the stage, to a George Clooney impersonator popping out of Eric’s desk, to discussion of Diablo Cody doing Juno DVD commentary, this interview has a little of every kind of humor featured on the show, making it a perfect introduction for someone who’s never seen an episode.
Eric Doesn’t Get The Job At Fruit Loops
In one of the more brilliant one-off sketches in the show, Eric Andre dons an all black bodysuit covered in Fruit Loops cereal, as well as one of those cone-shaped collars meant for dogs with an injury they’re not supposed to lick. He gets on a crowded New York City subway and cries that he didn’t get the job at Fruit Loops, before pouring cereal and milk into his collar and offering himself up to be eaten from as “communion”. Understandably, everyone on the subway is freaked out and disgusted, cursing him out and jumping back as milk splashes everywhere.
Bird Up! Featuring The “Ya-Boo-Bay” Song
In his “Bird Up!” man-on-the-street segment, Andre wears a full-body green screen suit and harasses strangers, with the footage then doctored in post to add funny animations. In this iteration, he goes up to a woman and sticks his green-suit-clad finger into her mouth, and starts repeating a guttural chant that sounds like “Ya-Boo-Bay-Ya-Boo-Bay” as he takes his finger in and out. Beyond the sheer silliness of the action, it works because of the woman’s reaction, or rather lack of reaction. Instead of being weirded out by Andre, she goes along with it, dancing along with him as he chants.
The Rancho Cucamonga City Council Meeting
One of the higher stakes stunts in the show, this bit finds Andre at a city council meeting in Rancho Cucamonga, California. In the bit, he dresses like a frat bro with a baseball cap on sideways, going up to the podium to campaign for votes in a non-specified election. He emphatically promises that if he wins he’ll put, “beer in the drinking fountains and cameras in the girls’ locker rooms,” before being escorted off stage by a police officer. This undercover stunt cost Andre a night in jail.
Grimes and Punishment
Almost every episode of The Eric Andre Show features a musical guest, often drawing huge names for brief performances that sometimes have nothing to do with music, such as when Eric has famous DJ Flying Lotus on to check his emails. When Grimes performed on the show the segment was dubbed “Grimes and Punishment”, and involved the experimental songstress belting her bizarre, lilting sounds while getting literally tortured. While progressing from tickling to electric shocks to being blindfolded and pelted with Nickelodeon-esque slime, the avant-garde popstar managed to keep going.
Eric’s Season 5 Transformation
Fans of the show know that Eric Andre likes to dramatically change up his look for each season. It started out with haircuts, like his change to a Kat Williams style for season three, but then took a darker turn when he got extremely thin for season four and entirely stopping bathing and cutting his hair or nails. Going the opposite for season 5, it was startling to see him completely shaven bald-except for his eyebrows. He also gained weight for the final season, and continued to put on more weight throughout filming. You can say a lot of things about Andre, but his full mind-body dedication to his craft is remarkable.
Introducing The One-And-Only “Russell Brand”
A recurring theme in the show, beyond the real celebrity guests, is to have celebrity impersonators on, of varying degrees of resemblance to their stars. Eric and Hannibal treat them like the real stars, making for a hilarious gag. On the second episode of the very first season of the show, Andre announces “Katy Perry’s husband, Russell Brand”, and out comes an extremely thin older man, shirtless but wearing suspenders, and carrying a live pigeon. Played by actor Semere-Ab Etmet Yohannes, the character responds to Andre’s Russell-Brand-specific questions with outlandish answers.