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Nick Kroll talks ‘Kroll Show,’ apologizes for missing Ohio State visit

Courtesy of Mike Yarish

Nick Kroll says he’s sorry.

While a few of his co-stars from FX’s “The League” are slated to visit Ohio State Jan. 29, Kroll, who plays Ruxin on the show, said he’ll be writing Season 2 of his new sketch series “Kroll Show.” And apparently he’s pretty bummed about it.

Although buzz is just starting to generate from the show, which premiered Wednesday on Comedy Central, Kroll said he’d like to swing by OSU and grab a few shirts at Homage before he digs further into the writing process for Season 2.

“I want to apologize for not coming to Ohio State,” Kroll said in a conference call with college media.

“Unfortunately, I can’t leave the writers’ room like that in the middle of the week to come and do a show, which is a real bummer.”

He added the last time he came to campus as part of a “Funny Or Die Tour” he had a blast.

“There’s a cool T-shirt store that I love there called Homage,” he said. “I have a Big League Chew T-shirt from there, an NYC T-shirt from there and I got my friend a Jim McMahon T-shirt from there that we actually ended up using on ‘The League.'”

Kroll also said even as his schedule is busier with his new show, fans of “The League” need not worry about him straying from the sitcom to concentrate solely on “Kroll Show.”

“The kind of people you see on ‘The League’ and the kind of jokes and sense of humor that you see on ‘The League’ will translate through (‘Kroll Show’),” he said.

Some OSU students, such as Jake Messer, a first-year in marketing, said they’d check out “Kroll Show” just because they’re familiar with Kroll from “The League.”

“‘The League’ is an off-the-wall comedy,” Messer said. “It’s not my favorite in the world, but I could see (Kroll) having his own show and it being pretty good if he plays a similar character.”

Kroll said he’s actually been somewhat developing the show for several years because he’s incorporating some pre-existing characters and sketches from former projects. Some of those include Fabrice Fabrice, Bobby Bottleservice, El Chupacabra and Rich Dicks.

Kroll plays about 10 characters on the show, and he said he hopes to develop even more.

“Whatever character I’m playing on the day is kind of my favorite,” he said, mentioning he doesn’t really mind playing women in heels. “The beauty of playing all the characters is that it never gets old or stale because every day is sort of a new day and character.”

Some of his new characters include a pet plastic surgeon, Dr. Armond, owners of the public relations firm PubLIZity, Liz and Liz and C-Czar, who Kroll described as a “toilet baby with an infected lip ring.”

Referring to “Kroll Show” as “an intersection between sketch and narrative storytelling like a sitcom,” Kroll also compared it to a bunch of mini-series that touch on “funny forums of humor,” such as sports, race, religion, sexuality and even international relations with China.

Dan King, a second-year in pre-communication, said he enjoyed the pilot episode because the comedy coupled well with the topics in the show.

“It was really, really funny,” King said. “A lot of it just seemed really liberalized and I love that type of comedy.”

It seems that was the reaction Kroll was looking for.

“We touch on I think all the things that are important points of discussion right now. But I think we do it always in service of a joke,” Kroll said. “I never want to seem preachy and I never want to seem like I want to shock the world.”

And although Kroll plays a lot of the characters on “Kroll Show,” he doesn’t comprise the whole cast.

He said several guest stars will appear in Season 1, such as Ed Helms, Chelsea Peretti, Rob Huebel, John Mulaney and Fred Armisen. Kroll said his good friend Andy Milonakis will also join him on the show.

“That’s the coolest part about having your own show is that you can hire who are your friends or who you’ve admired as great comedy minds and put them on the show and just have a blast,” Kroll said. He credited being able to invite guest stars because of his networking on other shows and with other comedians.

Reflecting on his acting stints on NBC’s “Parks and Recreation,” “Community” and, of course, “The League,” Kroll said he’s grateful to be able to have his own show, yet act and guest star on others’.

“I’m in a pretty rare position that I get to do all the things I get to do and I’m happy doing them,” he said. “If this is what the career is, then I am over the moon about it.”


Daniel Fyffe contributed to this story. 

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