A few years back, GSN tried to introduce American audiences to the hit Canadian comedy series Kenny vs. Spenny. But while knockoffs in England and Germany proved popular, nobody stateside tuned in for the real deal. Now Comedy Central is giving the outrageous reality show another shot thanks to an endorsement by South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone (they've also signed on as executive producers). The network airs the first episode of the new season of extreme competitions undertaken by "best friends" Kenny Hotz and Spencer Rice tonight (12:30 am/ET), before rolling out regular airings Sundays (11:30 pm/ET). TVGuide.com caught up with the dueling duo to find out what their shtick is all about.
TVGuide.com: Thanks for taking a little time out of your day for the interview.
Kenny Hotz: Oh yeah, we're so f--kin' busy.
Spencer Rice: Make it quick, TV Guide!
Kenny Hotz: Actually, it's nice to be asked to do anything other than the Canadian Jewish News.
TVGuide.com: I have to admit that I'd never seen the show before Comedy Central sent me a couple of episodes. After watching "Who Can Blow the Biggest Fart," I wondered if American audiences will get your subtle comedic sensibilities this time around.
Hotz: That's our No. 1 concern, but farting is universal. You guys produced Blazing Saddles. This is our ode to Blazing Saddles.
Rice: It's an extremely important male bragging point, no matter where you live.
TVGuide.com: For those who don't know, how popular were the first three seasons of Kenny vs. Spenny in Canada?
Hotz: We're pretty big. There's a big vacuum in Canada of American-style shows. We're pretty unique here, because Canadian comedy has a history of making fun of Canadian politics, which Spenny and I find boring. We grew up with SCTV and [Saturday Night Live] and [Monty] Python, so our show doesn't exactly look Canadian.
Rice: The other thing that's been great for us is that people have actually come up to us in Canada and told us they care about us as characters. Some want Kenny to win, some want me to win. People have even told me I need to be more insane, like Kenny.
TVGuide.com: Will anything about the series change now that Matt Stone and Trey Parker are involved?
Hotz: Just the stress level. Giving the show to a network is one thing, but having to deliver a show to them is brutal, because they're our friends and they're comedic geniuses. So it's amazing to have them in our corner.
Rice: Frankly, I'm shocked that they love us as much as they do. That was a shock from the beginning, and I can't believe it turned out to be true.
TVGuide.com: What can audiences expect from a standard Kenny vs. Spenny competition?
Hotz: Well, we're like Ernie and Bert 2000.
Rice: We're very different and that's ultimately what makes the show work. I tend to…
Hotz: … molest children.
Rice: He tends to lie about me and cheat. I'm honest. There are natural distinctions in human nature that fuel the comedy and the competitions.
Hotz: Filming Spenny is like filming [Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom]. It's like watching a retarded wildebeest grazing. My stuff is a little more prepared. I take time to think about each competition.
Rice: That's what he'd like you to think. Look, we've done this for so long — 63 episodes total. We each have a way of doing it that works for us and preserves as much reality as possible.
TVGuide.com: If it's totally real, I hope you guys are going to doctors regularly, because sometimes it looks like you're causing yourself bodily harm.
Rice: I go all the time.
Hotz: Spenny goes, but I don't give a s--t.
Rice: In the "Fart" episode, I told Dr Richmond, my doctor, what Kenny did and he said he could actually hurt his organs.
Hotz: You let Dr Richmond up your ass. I don't think that's healthy.
Rice: It was his finger. It was for a prostate exam.
Hotz: Yeah, and you've been back like 17 times since.
TVGuide.com: An upcoming episode is titled "First Guy to Get a Boner Loses." Do you have any worries about getting that one past the FCC?
Hotz: Look, Spenny does the show for broadcasters. I do my show for Dorito-munching stoners. I do my own thing and don't worry about it.
Rice: Please don't tell the FCC about us.
TVGuide.com: Have there been any ideas that have been too extreme to carry out?
Hotz: Sure, we've wanted to do "Who Can Smoke More Pot" or "Who Can Do More Mushrooms."
Rice: I have issues with shows that are against my moral code. Kenny wants to do one where we see who can get the most girls to slap them. I'm not into going out and being rude just to get girls to slap me, even though I see the inherent comedic value in that.
Hotz: I think America wants to see us tortured. It's a gladiator ring. I don't really want to eat a lot of meat or see how much pot I can smoke, but that's what people want.
Rice: Sure, Kenny's demographic wants to see that, but it's not just about what we're trying to eat or smoke. It's about how you feel about the things he's doing to me and vice versa. It's the interaction. Of course, he's under the delusion that everybody loves him and everybody hates me. Believe me, that's not the truth.
TVGuide.com: How is it possible that you guys are still friends after all these showdowns?
Rice: When you have someone in your life as long as I've had him in my life, it becomes like family. He's the brother I never wanted.
Hotz: We're not friends, we're family. Spenny is probably sticking around for the money at this point, but I'd do this for free.
Check out TVGuide.com's November Sweeps Preview for a look at the month's biggest twists on Heroes, Men in Trees, CSI and other favorites.
For more Comedy Central programming, visit our Online Video Guide.
Send your comments on this Q&A to firstname.lastname@example.org.