Q&A: Walking with Human Giants

MTV's Human Giant isn't for everyone. In fact, there is a good chance that during the viewing of an episode of the sketch comedy show, the average American will be offended about 10,000 times. But that's exactly what makes them funny: a no-holds-barred comedic take on life where everyone is a target and no one is spared.

In this day and age of watching what one says, Human Giant does the opposite by fusing Chappelle's Show shock with Mr. Show with Bob and David absurdity. The formula works; one of the hottest viral videos on the Web (warning: potentially offensive language...actually scratch the potentially and insert definitely) right now is a Human Giant piece featuring Arrested Development's Will Arnett making a sex tape with the Olsen twins (actually the Human Giant players in Mary-Kate and Ashley cutout masks) while spewing dirty talk that will test anyone's gag reflex.

Two-thirds of the main cast--Aziz Ansari and Rob Huebel--spoke with's Laura Swisher about what to expect from season two, and of course the talk eventually strayed to mobile abortion stations, the ghosts of gay porn stars, and Vin Diesel. Do you tape in New York or do you tape in Los Angeles?

Rob Huebel: Well, our first season, we shot half of it in LA and half of it in New York. But this year we shot the whole thing in New York, to make it really hard on ourselves. Why hard on yourselves?

Rob Huebel: It is harder to do stuff in New York, I think. It's just colder and crappier... When we were shooting in LA, it was just awesome every day. It was like, "Oh, it's sunny. It's warm." So that was great. But, I think it was just the guys that we work with at MTV, the development people, they're all in New York, and so they [say] "Well, it'd sure be great if we could come on the set all the time and watch what's happening." That's funny. I would have thought that everyone would love to be in New York. Because everyone's like, "Oh, New York is awesome. It's the best."

Rob Huebel: We're all from New York, but if you have to shoot in one place or the other, I think it's a little bit easier to shoot in LA. We had all just relocated to LA. And then, so we had to pack up and go back to New York. "Oh, well why did I just move to LA?" You know, I would have just stayed in New York. And where do you live in New York?

Rob Huebel: I have a place in the East Village. You can totally stay there. Actually, my friend just stayed at my house and he just called me to tell me that he, like, I think he destroyed my apartment. I have to go there tomorrow for something, and I think my apartment's going to be, like, completely wrecked. That's very America's Next Top Model.

[Aziz Ansari calls in...late.]

Aziz Ansari: Hey, it's Aziz. Hey. We were just talking about you.

Aziz Ansari: Oh man. OK, so [I heard] you don't like old people.

Aziz Ansari: No, oh boy. Well, I'll have you know, a close personal friend of mine is Brian Dennehy, who's very old and we hang out all the time, so. Call Brian. That disproves that. You've redeemed yourself. Where are you calling me from, Aziz?

Aziz Ansari: I'm just in the parking lot of the Farmers Market in LA, and I just tried to get into someone else's silver PT Cruiser; it was not my silver PT Cruiser, but a different one. But I just found mine and I'm clocking in, and I'll be in my car. I do all my interviews inside of the PT Cruiser because it's the coolest place to do an interview from. Do they pay you to plug them like that?

Aziz Ansari: No. If you read an interview, it's like, "Aziz Ansari called from inside his PT Cruiser." People are instantly impressed right away. "Whoa. That guy has it going on. He's an important dude!" So, season two, Human Giant. How exciting is it to reach season two, and is it a surprise at all?

Aziz Ansari: Yeah, we were surprised to even have a show in the first place. We made a pilot and [thought], "Oh, yeah sure, this will get picked up on MTV." And then when it did, it's like, "Whoa, all right." And then to get a second season is definitely pretty cool. Are there sketches that we'll see again in season two that we're familiar with from season one, and which sketches will we not see again, which ones ran their course?

Rob Huebel: Well, we take pride in killing off a lot of our characters. There are a lot of characters that got murdered, or otherwise killed in season one, so a lot of those guys won't be coming back just because they're dead. But the people that lived to make it to season two, such as the Illusionators, and Shutterbugs, they're coming back. And I think those might be the only two that we did from the first season that we're doing again in this season. We wanted to really expand on the story ideas that we had for Illusionators and Shutterbugs, so we gave them these big story arcs and it's pretty cool. We're actually pretty fired up about it. Can you give us a little taste of some characters that we will see?

Rob Huebel: Well, there's a ton of stuff, there's probably upwards of 60 sketches. But, some of the guys we really like, me and Aziz do this bit in the show tonight where I'm a gay porn star and I die in a car accident, so then I haunt Aziz. So, he's haunted by the ghost of a gay porn star. And that was one of our favorites.

Aziz Ansari: By haunting, Rob means sexually violated repeatedly by this ghost. So that's fun. And we do this new bit that's called T-shirt Squad. You know those guys at basketball games that shoot T-shirts to get people fired up for the games and stuff? It's just those guys. And we play those guys. But in addition to shooting T-shirts at games, we also run covert operations for the military with our T-shirt guns. So, that was fun to film, it's kind of like an action show. Rob, I noticed that on your MySpace page you link to the Human Giant Will Arnett viral video and say, "I don't know if MTV is going to let us air this one." Did they let you air that, and do you think posting it first online helps to convince them to allow it on the air?

Rob Huebel: Well, I think it all comes down to the standards people, and what we're going to have to cut out. We know that we're definitely going to be able to air that, but we may have to bleep a couple of terms. There were some terms in there like, "My d*** barfed too much." [Laughs]

Aziz Ansari: I think that has to be bleeped. And I think the whole line we have to cut is, "I want to impregnate your mouth." Other than "I want to impregnate your mouth," everything else is fair game, as long is it's bleeped. Impregnate. That's a really innocuous word.

Rob Huebel: I know, but you can't say "impregnate your mouth" together, because that implies something dirty! You guys have great lines that I'm sure coworkers everywhere will be repeating. Do you have some favorites from season one that you guys really like?

Rob Huebel: In Shutterbugs, we used to have a line where me and Aziz would say to these little Asian kids, we said, "Call us back when you're not Asian." And you know, in other words, we don't want to work with you.

Aziz Ansari: Yeah. Asian people always say that to us. Back to the video we were talking about earlier. Will Arnett at one point says "The backseat is big enough that you can perform an abortion in it." Did you guys research how much space is needed? Did you talk to any providers to really get it right?

Rob Huebel: Well, Aziz is driving the PT Cruiser, and Aziz, would you say the PT Cruiser is big enough?

Aziz Ansari: Yeah, considering I just performed three abortions in it today. That seat is so hot with chicks in the back, it's because they were designed to perform abortions in.

Rob Huebel: I don't know why that's not mentioned in the commercials, I think that's a real selling point.

Aziz Ansari: I think if Dodge had the opportunity to go back in time and give the PT Cruiser an abortion and never have made that car, I think they would have done it. What guest stars will we see in season two, because you guys have some great ones. Obviously the biggest one, [12-year-old] Bobbe J. So, first of all, how did you get him?

Rob Huebel: He was a guy that Aziz and Paul used to watch on the show America's Most Talented Kids. And he was a judge on that show. He was always just the kid with all these funny wisecracks and stuff. And so we wrote that part in Shutterbugs specifically for him. He's really like this miracle of a human. So Bobb'e J is back. Tracy Morgan does a bit for us, as does Will Arnett. A lot of our friends from Saturday Night Live, Andy Samberg and Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, who is in Superbad also. Who else? Michael K. Williams from The Wire. Who are you going to ask to be on the show that you know is going to say no, but you're going to ask anyways?

Rob Huebel: I think we already kind of did that this year, with Mr. Vin Diesel. What was his excuse for not doing it?

Rob Huebel: I was really excited, we had a really good part for Vin Diesel and [because] it's our second season, we felt like we could definitely get some big names for the show. We wanted him to play himself in a sketch, and I emailed it to his agent and right away he sent me a response. I don't even think he sent it to Vin Diesel. But he acted like he did. He emailed me back and he said, "Sorry, this one's not for the Diese." And we all started laughing because he calls his client the Diese.

Aziz Ansari: I guess our script wasn't as funny as The Pacifier. Aziz, I wanted to know a little bit more about your hatred of Australians. Because it's kind of an established fact that you hate them.

Aziz Ansari: Oh, actually, I was a character when I did that. Yeah, that's when I did Flight of the Conchords, that was really fun. We get this guy [casting the show] and we say, "OK, you guys can pick one of the three of us to be in your show. Who do you think is the best?" And they said, "Well, definitely you, Aziz." And they put me in the show, so that was great! Wow, they had their pick and they chose you?

Rob Huebel: To be honest, what happened was, Aziz doesn't know this, but they called me first, and I said, "You know what, I don't want to do it. Give it to Paul." So, then they called Paul, and he felt bad for Aziz, so he gave it to Aziz.

Aziz Ansari: Well, actually before they called Rob, they called me, and I turned it down then, and then they called those other two, and then they called me back again and offered me a lot of money. And then I said yes. So, that's what Rob didn't know. Thanks for talking to us!

Rob Huebel: Hey, thanks so much, we appreciate it.

Human Giant airs on Tuesdays on MTV. For more information, check out's previous coverage.

Comments (2)
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Mar 21, 2008
Mar 18, 2008
funny funny funnnnnnnny stuff these guys do.

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