Interview with Trevor Moore, of the ‘Whitest Kids U Know’

Trevor Moore is part of the new guard in comedy, an entrepreneurial sketch artist who made his creative bones as a cartoonist, writer, and director.

Star and lead writer for the IFC hit series, The Whitest Kids U’Know, Moore previously cut his teeth on public access television (a la Garth and Wayne) in The Trevor Moore Show and Uncle Morty’s Dub Shack.

Moore went to Manhattan’s School of Visual Arts and met up with other WKUK members, and formed their nascent troupe that went from local NYC gigs to a breakout comedy arts festival performance that netted them their first big break with FUSE network.  “Whitest Kids U Know” is now into their second season on IFC. 

Trevor took some time out to chat with Monsters and Critics.

Are you a graphic novel fan, if so who do you like?

Trevor: You know, Timmy is a huge graphic novel fan. But I’m tragically under-informed in this area. I remember when I was a kid I had a really cool one about Batman being alive during the Civil War.

What was it that made you walk in to the local TV station to pursue a show public access?

Trevor: There’s not much going on in rural Virginia. So you kind of have to
entertain yourself. That was my solution.

What was the very first bit or act you ever did on the air, do you remember?

Trevor: I made all of these cardboard animals, like deer and bears and stuff and
would just go around town setting them up in like the mall, or outside of
stores. Then I’d go hide with a video camera and watch peoples reactions to
them or see how long it would take for people to kick them down or throw
them away.

Who was your favorite stand-up that you ever saw live in a club, either Los
Angeles or New York?

Trevor: Louis CK. I remember I came up to NY to see a Letterman taping when I was 16, and he was warming up the audience before the show.  I thought he was
hysterical. I also got to see him perform in Aspen a couple years ago and it
was amazing.

How would you describe The Trevor Moore Show?

Trevor: It was kind of modeled after a late-night talk show but for no reason.
I had no guests. I just kind of wandered around the town and got in people’s
way and stuff.

What was the tipping point sketch segment that killed your deal with PAX?

Trevor: I did a sketch about beating a Panda Bear to death and then made a joke
about how the elderly shouldn’t be able to vote. And a bunch of other stuff.
There wasn’t one tipping point.

What are your favorite things (qualities, traits, idiosyncrasies) about WKUK
mates Zach, Sam, Darren and Timmy?

Trevor: Zach plays a good straight man and extremely angry man. He’s a good
screamer! Sam plays really likeable oafs.  Darren is a fantastic woman.
And Timmy is spot on for playing people who are, well, like Timmy.

How did you actually get the personal intern gig to SNL’s Lorne Michaels?
How long did you do this?

Trevor: I just applied for it. The interview for the job was over the summer and I
was back down in Virginia. I took a bus up to New York to go to the interview and once they found that out, I guess they just felt bad and gave me the job. I did
that for a year.

Who was or is your all-time favorite SNL performer?

Trevor: Probably Chevy Chase or Adam Sandler. Although I was a huge Norm MacDonald fan in high school.

FUSE bought you guys hook, line and sinker for a series order without the
pilot hoops the other networks wanted, after your HBO comedy festival success.  How and why did you go to IFC from FUSE?

Trevor: Well, Fuse was a music channel and we were kind of their only non-music
show. And Jennifer Caserta who is the EVP of marketing over at IFC, had been
working with us over at Fuse (both networks are owned by the same parent
company). So when she went over to IFC, she asked if she could bring us
along. Which was dope because now we can curse and show genitals on TV.

What would you say to Britney Spears for advice?

Trevor: Follow your instincts.

Tell me about your Fox Atomic movie you and Zach are co-writing, what is the
name, what’s the tagline and premise?

Trevor: The name is “Playboys”. Tagline is T.B.D.  And the premise is that a
highschool kid gets into an accident and falls into a coma for four years.

When he wakes up he finds out that his girlfriend has moved out of town and
become a Playboy Playmate. So he and his friend travel across the country to
try and break into the Playboy Mansion and re-unite with her.

Do sketches just “come” to you or do you hole up in a room stocked with Red
Bulls and Moon Pies with the other guys and hammer them out the old school

Trevor: A little of both. I’ll come up with a lot of ideas just randomly throughout
the week but we also all get together and try to crank a ton out in large
writing sessions.

What is your favorite sketch moment for season two of WKUK?

Trevor: It actually changes day to day. I think our “Opus” sketch is my favorite
right now.

It’s about a guy who gets tricked by a diamond thief and has to go down into the world’s biggest volcano to steal the devil’s powers from him.

That or the Disney-style musical we did with JFK and Lee Harvey Oswald serenading each other. Those are the fun ones for me, the ones where the premise is so far out there, that when you try to explain them to people they kind of just stare at you blankly.

Is anyone eyeballing you yet for some good film parts?

Trevor: I don’t know. I’m kind of involved with one project that’s in development at
a studio. But that’s pretty early yet. Right now, we’re just spending all of our days finishing up this “Playboys” movie.  So I haven’t really had the time to do anything else. I’ll just have to see what happens after this project is completed.

My son introduced me to your show. He’s a JV wrestler for Calabasas High School and his team, the Coyotes, love WKUK.  The coach will let them hang your calendar for 2008 in the weight room.  They want to know if you (WKUK)will be a sponsor for them for next season?

Trevor: Sure! What are their names? How do we do that? Does that require money? Or is it more like a moral sponsor? I can honestly say that I hope they destroy
every other team they play this season and that they beat all of the other
kids so badly that their opponents spirits are crushed and they quit wrestling forever!

IFC presents “The Whitest Kids U Know” Sunday nights at 11 PM ET/PT

Note the date on this article may be incorrect due to importing it from our old system.