Our good friend Greg Gutfeld launches his new show this Sunday night at 10 PM on Fox News Channel. As Andrew always said, Greg is a one-of-a-kind talent, destined for great things. We couldn’t be happier for him and we hope you enjoy this exclusive interview with Greg conducted by Dana Perino.
DANA: The Greg Gutfeld Show – that’s pretty cool, Greg. Now that your name is the brand, what can your fans and new viewers expect…will they laugh, and should they send small children out of the room?
GREG: No, they should send “large” children out of the room. Why are the small children always singled out? Haven’t we had enough? Especially, you, of all little people. I think viewers can expect an unusual take on current events. It should be interesting, surprising, a little scary and a bit comforting. It should keep you glued, I hope, to my odd-looking face.
It’s not going to blow the world up, but it’s not going to be what hacks in the media keep saying its going to be. It’s not going to be a “conservative version of (fill in the blank of any liberal comedy show).” When you say something like that, you’re just echoing something that’s already been said, because it’s easy. I prefer to call the show a mutant version of Tony Orlando.
In short expect a short man making observations about world we live in, without a laugh track or live audience; the observations should echo what you’re thinking and also what you’d like to say. It should become a show that you look forward to, and something you like enough that you overlook my incompetence.
My goals are not unrealistic. I just want to make an hour of programming you can enjoy.
DANA: Your new show will air at 10 pm on Sunday nights, which is like getting the final say about the week or the first day before everyone goes back to work on Monday. Do you want people to think about it ending their weekend or starting their week with you?
GREG: Yes – we will look ahead, and also behind. I will also be looking under things, but not over things – for obvious reasons. My real gift: looking through things. I see all your internal organs and frankly you should eat more kale. I can’t believe you go outside with your liver looking like that. This Sunday’s show will feature a secret homage to Andrew Breitbart. Keep an eye out for that.
DANA: Red Eye and The Five have a eclectic group of fans – when you imagine your viewer, what kind of people do you see?
GREG: The best thing about my book tour was seeing Redeye and Five fans en masse. I could actually see people who saw the world the way I saw things. Redeye fans group together independent of age – but they all seem to smoke, have a few tattoos, interesting hobbies and giant throbbing brains. I was astounded by the creativity – many were artists and punks who made phenomenal work – paintings, woodwork, ironwork – it’s astounding. Five fans dote more, as though as I was their smart ass nephew and they love to pinch his cheeks.
When I imagine my viewer – and it sounds saccharine – but it’s a family thing. People in line for my books came as families. The dad turns his daughter onto the Five; the son turned his mom onto Redeye – so they came together. It’s the only thing that makes me emotional. I pride myself on despising sentiment – but that moves me. So when I envision a viewer, I envision a group, discussing how badly I’m doing. And if I’m meeting both their assumptions, and expectations, which are often different.
DANA: Where and how do you come up with your best show ideas? I imagine you riding your big wheel around Union Square Park yelling at people to get the hell out of your way and then hitting the brakes when a thought pops in your head and yelling “THAT’S BRILLIANT!”
GREG: I’ll let that pass, since height shaming seems to be your crutch in difficult times. A tiny crutch – a tooth pick, if you will – but a crutch nonetheless.
Ideas are things that happen at any time because you’re constantly thinking and evaluating life, as if it were an eternally unsolvable math problem, which it is. My best writing is often early in the morning, and sometimes while working out. Jokes come after the writing. Sometimes they hit you exactly at the time you say them – which is dangerous. When someone says there’s no such thing as a bad idea, then you’ve never seen the last two cars I purchased. There are plenty of bad ideas. A good idea is better than any drug taken – the rush is overwhelming and makes you feel immortal, and you must write it down to make sure it makes sense when its written. Then you must read and reread it until it’s nearly memorized.
For the show – an idea should make people you trust quietly nod, as if it hits a truth they always knew to be true, but hadn’t expressed it. The best ideas are unspoken truths.
The key is to not be around people who will tell you every idea is great, or you will be fired. A lot.
DANA: You’ve been a consumer of television and pop culture for decades (a decade longer than me, I might add, just to point out my relative youthfulness), so you have opinions on what works and what doesn’t on television. Why do you think The Greg Gutfeld Show is going to work?
GREG: I have no idea if this will work, because as I am changing – so, too is television. I am trying to do something that I would watch. Bottom line: it has to be interesting. It doesn’t have to have big celebrities or well known musical acts. It should be interesting, surprising, and again, a little scary. Like grade school.
DANA: Will you read your fan feedback on social media or resist peeking for a awhile?
GREG: I will ask my pals after they watched it, to see what they thought. I know that often people in entertainment are surrounded by “yes” men who tell you everything is go. That’s never been an issue for me. People – especially my best friends and my wife – show no hesitation in telling me what’s awful and what’s not. They are as critical as me, and they tell me to my face. This is the product of living a long life before you get in front of a camera. People who know you for a long time refuse to take you seriously.
DANA: While I was out on book tour, a lot of fans asked me if you’re as funny in person as you are on The Five. I said I’d never laughed or learned more at the same time – I have a feeling I’ll be staying up late on Sunday nights from now on.
GREG: Late for you is what 7:30 pm? This is going to be tough for you – staying up past ten p.m. on a school night. Here’s a tip: take your shower the night before (Sunday), and then go to sleep in your work clothes! It’ll save you an hour of getting ready in the morning. I learned this from Kilmeade.