Mark Ricci exclusive interview: 20 random questions to get to know the comedian & YouTuber

Pictured: Mark Ricci. Courtesy of Mark Ricci and MWPR.
Mark Ricci has a new stand-up special coming out this month. Pic credit: Mark Ricci/MWPR

Mark Ricci, who is well known for his hilarious YouTube videos, is now set to take the stage for a stand-up special, set for a June 9 release on Amazon.

Mark Ricci is the YouTuber without fear. We’re used to seeing YouTubers gain a following behind the screen, but Ricci has decided to pursue stand-up on top of that.

His Amazon special, The Teenage Special, is full of fun references to his family life and his time in high school.

We recently had a chance to get to know Mark a little bit better by asking some party questions, and his answers did not disappoint.

Here’s what Mark Ricci had to say.

Monsters & Critics: What’s your process like for coming up with skits?

Mark Ricci: Writing skits is a lot different than writing long-form content like TV or film. With TV and film, you need a few drafts of an outline and treatment before even getting to the writing.

But with skits, all I need is a vague premise, and I can get right to typing. It’s sort of like freestyling because as I’m writing, more ideas come up that I can play with.

M&C: Are you a karaoke guy? You strike me as quite possibly a talented karaoke guy.

Mark Ricci: How did you know? My go-to is any song from Aladdin.

M&C: Do you like fake Christmas trees or real?

Mark Ricci: I used to like real ones because of that fresh cedar smell, but I realized the mess of the needles falling to the ground, every time you walk by it, make them not worth it.

M&C: Important question: Who do you think wins in a fight, Captain America or Wolverine?

Mark Ricci: I would say Wolverine. They’re both highly capable fighters. Cap’s got heart. But Wolverine is a savage. And he has claws.

If Cap throws the shield at Wolverine, Wolverine can probably stab right through it. And then Cap is defenseless and has to avoid being attacked.

Watch some Cap fanboys get mad at me now because Cap’s shield and Wolverine’s claws are both made out of adamantium.

M&C: When was the hardest you’ve ever laughed?

Mark Ricci: I’ve laughed hard so many times. One of the occasions was when I was in drama class, watching a performance about some serious social issue. But to represent this issue, these classmates thought it would be a good idea to do some interpretive dance moves.

They were sliding around the stage like snakes coming out of a pot. This lasted five minutes. The serious looks on their faces, plus the irony that this was supposed to represent a serious topic, made it impossible to retain the laughter.

M&C: Can you describe your upcoming stand-up special, The Teenage Special, for fans?

Mark Ricci: It’s an energetic hour, with some characters, that highlights the teenage experience. That era of one’s life is a goldmine for material.

M&C: What’s one of your happiest memories?

Mark Ricci: The first time I was on a TV show in 2012 was one of my happiest memories. It was a game show called Skatoony, which was a mix of live-action and cartoon characters.

Even if I didn’t win, I would say that, because it was so cool to be on a huge green screen set for the first time and get “gorilla dung” thrown at me. I did end up winning, though, so that was a plus.

M&C: If you could describe your purpose, what would it be?

Mark Ricci: To entertain! I think making escapist entertainment has always been, and continues to be the dream.

M&C: What’s a song you like that people probably don’t know you like?

Mark Ricci: September by Earth, Wind & Fire.

M&C: What do you consider to be your spirit animal?

Mark Ricci: Monkeys are my spirit animal. Always hanging around and trying to have fun, on the surface, but on the low, somewhat intelligent.

M&C: How many times do you hit snooze in the morning on average before waking up?

Mark Ricci: Twice, and I’m good. Sometimes I take longer to wake up, but coffee is my supplement for not hitting the snooze button for a third time.

M&C: Are you an Apple guy or Android?

Mark Ricci: I’ve been made fun of it for years, but I’ve been an Android guy. It’s because I root for the underdogs.

M&C: Are you more introverted or extroverted?

Mark Ricci: I’m usually extroverted. I like seeing other people. But the quarantine surprised me a little because, for the first two months, I really enjoyed the pause from other human beings.

Breathing my own breath was pleasant, for once.

M&C: What’s your favorite food?

Mark Ricci: Used to be lasagna, but you won’t find much protein there. So, I’m more of a grilled chicken wrap kinda guy now. I haven’t had the courage to pull the vegan trigger yet.

M&C: Who is the movie or TV show character that you relate to the most? (Can say more than one if you want!)

Mark Ricci: I’m a mix between Bart Simpson, Spongebob SquarePants, and Peter Parker. Sometimes mischievous and pre-occupied with my alter-ego, but I have a good conscious and want to protect other people.

Oh, and for the Spongebob characteristics, I can be hyperly optimistic.

M&C: What’s your favorite genre of music?

Mark Ricci: Mostly hip hop. I’m pretty basic in that if I were to turn on the radio right now and flip through every station, I’ll have every song memorized.

But when I’m looking for an old-school vibe, I like ’70s and ’80s music. The Bee Gees and The Eagles are my jams.

M&C: Favorite song?

Mark Ricci: Calabria 2007 — Enur.

M&C: How did you gather the courage to do stand-up comedy?

Mark Ricci: For my first show at age 16, I drank half a Red Bull. It gave me wings, and I was ready to go.

M&C: What is the biggest thing you’ve learned in doing stand-up after making your mark doing YouTube?

Mark Ricci: I was prepared for it early on, but you can’t just pause your stand up to think of what to say next like you can while filming a YouTube video.

Stand up is all live, and you work off of the energy of the crowd. It’s a very different experience.

M&C: What are you most excited about with your upcoming special, The Teenage Special, coming out?

Mark Ricci: I’m most excited to be able to search up the name on Prime Video, and see it pop up. It’s the little things in life, you know?

Mark Ricci’s, The Teenage Special drops on Amazon June 9. 

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