Adult Swim’s sketch series “Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!” is hitting the stage in honor of the 10-year anniversary of the show’s debut.
Show-runners and Temple University graduates Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim will be performing a live version of their cult classic TV show at the Merriam Theater July 20.
“Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!” is the mutated brainchild of Heidecker and Wareheim. Debuting in 2007, the 15-minute serial was part skit, part musical, part public-access TV parody and fully insane. It fit perfectly in line with the other oddball shows on Adult Swim, the late-night version of Cartoon Network. The “Awesome Show” ran for five seasons and spawned multiple spin-offs.
The comedy duo met while studying together at Temple University. They contributed to a number of joint projects, including “Tom Goes to the Mayor,” a precursor to the “Awesome Show” which was also hosted on Adult Swim. But the “Awesome Show” was the culmination of their career, cementing the comedians as oddball cult-comedy creators.
While there is no interconnecting storyline, the show has a variety of recurring characters and themes. Episodes are comprised of awkward skits, as well as faux-advertisements and other oddities. With pervasive use of choppy editing, offbeat soundtracks and surrealist jokes, the show feels like a low-budget public-access TV show on acid.
While Heidecker and Wareheim were the main stars of the show, they relied heavily on bit appearances from other major comedians. Paul Rudd, Zach Galifianakis, Will Ferrell, Bob Odenkirk and many more major stars have appeared on the “Awesome Show.” Probably the most notable appearance was from John C. Reilly, who played the dim-witted Dr. Steve Brule. The character was so popular that Adult Swim created a spinoff focused on him in 2010 called “Check It Out! With Dr. Steve Brule.”
“Awesome Show” came to an end in 2010, but older episodes can be found on the Adult Swim website, and various skits can also be found on YouTube. Both showrunners remained active. In 2012, Heidecker and Wareheim created an on-demand movie based on the “Awesome Show.” They also created a “late night” talk show that was hosted online. Wareheim has had a major role in the hit Netflix original “Masters of None,” where he portrays Arnold, the best friend of Aziz Ansari’s character Dev. Beyond the tour, Heidecker and Wareheim currently host a daily telephone prank series on Snapchat.
Heidecker and Wareheim’s comedy is not for everyone. Their eccentric, off-kilter humor often borders on grotesque and uncomfortable, but it is nothing if not refreshing. For those looking for a comedy experience unlike anything you’ve seen before, tickets are still available to see Tim and Eric Live at the Merriam Center July 20.