The years have been good to Michael Ian Black. By just happily existing during the '70s, '80s and '90s, the actor/comedian did enough research to provide VH1's popular I Love The... specials with some of its funniest observations and spot-on comments. But since VH1 has momentarily run out of decades, the former bowling-alley manager on NBC's Ed is keeping busy with a pilot for Comedy Central (with two of his comic cohorts from The State). Tonight and tomorrow night, he'll also be sitting in The Late Late Show's guest-host chair.
TV Guide Online: Have you ever done any interviewing or guest-hosting stuff?
Michael Ian Black:
I did. When Stuck on You came out, I interviewed Matt Damon, Greg Kinnear, Cher and the Farrelly brothers for a special on Comedy Central. And I learned that, in person, Matt Damon is actually gorgeous. Incidentally, so is Cher. The woman is stunning, to the point where, I mean, I was having fantasies about doing Cher while interviewing her.
TVGO: How's your wife?
[Laughs] How's my wife? She's good. I have two kids, none of them by Cher. Older boy, younger girl.
TVGO: Amy Brenneman is one of your guests. Are you a big Judging Amy fan?
No, I've never seen the show. [Laughs]
TVGO: Do you plan to get an episode in beforehand?
Ehh... We'll see. I don't know. [Mock indignant] I mean, how much preparation can I possibly be expected to do?! I'm a busy, busy man. I'm only going to have so much time in Los Angeles when I'm out there. I mean, I think Amy Brenneman is lovely and I'm looking forward to speaking with her. Doesn't mean I have to see her work.
TVGO: Also, Jason Ritter from Joan of Arcadia is another one of your guests. Have you seen that show?
No. I've heard it's good. I don't watch a lot of popular television. I'm a parent, [so] generally, I watch animated children's programming and Blue's Clues. If you're gonna have Joe from Blue's Clues on, we can talk for hours.
TVGO: You're arguably more well-known now for being in the VH1 specials than anything else.
Well, you'll get no disagreement that if people know me from anything these days, it's from VH1. Ironically, I get recognized for being on Kids in the Hall more than I get recognized for being on Ed, and the fact is I was never on Kids in the Hall. On an almost daily basis, somebody comes up to me and says, "Hey, weren't you on Kids in the Hall?" I say, "No," and then they say, "Shut up! Yes, you were... You d---."
TVGO: At least you've got the recognition for VH1.
It's kind of good to be known, almost regardless of what you're known for. Paris Hilton is case in point of this. She did nothing except release a sex video and now she's "Paris Hilton" in capital letters. So, the point being, look for my sex video coming out any day now.
TVGO: I may not.
It's really hot.
TVGO: So... Before you go, since we'll have to wait until 2010 for VH1 specials about this decade, can we get a sample of your take on current pop-culture stuff? Reality TV, for instance?
It's unbelievable to me that people are seeking out ways to humiliate themselves on television. Honestly, I don't understand how they think it is going to improve their lives to be known as the guy who ate the horse's ass on Fear Factor. I really don't. You know, I think if you're in line for a promotion at work and it's you and the other guy, if I'm the boss, I'm probably going to pick the guy who didn't eat the horse's ass.