Daniel Tosh isn’t one to worry about taking it too far — offending people has kind of become his thing. And with his new show “Brickleberry,” which premieres tonight on Comedy Central, he will be doing more of just that.
Tosh is the executive producer of the new animated show hitting the airwaves, which tells the story of an odd group of park rangers in a mediocre state park named Brickleberry. Early on, it’s very clear that this isn’t your typical, run-of-the-mill family-friendly cartoon. Sex is a theme right out of the gate. And by that I mean the opening scene of the first episode is a series of animals … you know, doing it. Sorry for the spoiler.
Tosh voices Malloy, a huggable bear cub who isn’t afraid to speak his dirty mind. Tom Kenny, a man best known for being the voice of SpongeBob SquarePants, voices Woody, Brickleberry’s nice-guy head ranger who wants to maintain his reputation as the best ranger in the park. Woody’s newfound competition is Ethel, voiced by Kaitlin Olson, or Dee from “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”, who is new to Brickleberry State Park and whose looks quickly appeal to her male co-workers. Dave Herman (“Futurama”) voices ranger Steve, another ranger who is often a bit too sure of himself, and Jerry Minor (“Eastbound and Down”) plays Denzel, an African-American ranger who is into the older ladies — and I mean much older — and doesn’t really like being in the woods. Roger Black, one of the show’s creators, voices Connie, an extremely masculine ranger with some frankly disgusting tendencies.
The Badger Herald was lucky enough to chat with both Kenny and Minor to get a little inside information on the sure-to-be controversial new cartoon.
Both are quick to acknowledge the show’s questionable nature, but that’s part of the reason they both wanted to be a part of it.
“You’re doing this total eyebrow-raising, kind of shocking material where you’re like ‘Wow, okay!’” Kenny said. “We’re gonna go there? Let’s go there!”
Minor said the show is “pretty racy”, but that’s why Kenny thinks it’s different (in a good way, of course).
“I really respect the show for going for it,” he said. “If you’re gonna push that envelope, why push the envelope when you can shred the shit out of the envelope?”
Kenny recognized the fact “Brickleberry” comes in the era after “South Park” and “Family Guy”, two shows that set the standard for mature animated shows on television. With that, Kenny said “you’ve gotta push harder and go further than you would have had to go even five years ago.”
For Kenny, who has done voice work for many different animated shows, “Brickleberry” comes naturally. “It’s always been my passion,” he said.
Minor likes this kind of work for simple reasons, joking, “you don’t have to put makeup on.” He wanted to get involved in something different, as his resume currently lists shows like “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Community” and “Eastbound & Down” — all live action comedy shows.
After executive producer Daniel Tosh made headlines for including a joke about rape in a stand-up comedy routine, the comedian landed himself in hot water. Not surprisingly, the pilot of “Brickleberry” has a subplot surrounding rape. There was talk of eliminating those scenes from the show, but as far as these two stars know, the episode remains in its original state.
When watching the first episode initially after recording it, Kenny said he “wasn’t able to discover any holding back or self-editing, and I think that’s a great decision,” he said, adding, “it’s a slippery slope.”
And for Minor, “The episode I saw … had all the content intact,” he said. “I think if you’re gonna go places, you’ve gotta go there like 110 percent, or what’s the point?”
For those brave enough to give the show a chance, Minor described it as “outrageous” and “funny.” Kenny said it’s “not scared of pushing people’s buttons,” and believes, “it’s important to be fearless and not give a crap about the guardians of good taste.”
“Brickleberry” premieres tonight at 10:30/9:30c on Comedy Central.