“Workaholics” handed out free passes on campus to their promotional tour when it hit the Fillmore Miami Beach in March. Hardly anyone knew what the show was then, but in just six months, the Comedy Central show has exploded in popularity among college students.
Now in its second season on Comedy Central, “Workaholics” is a comedy about three college grads who work their first 9-to-5 job together at a telemarketing office, while living the college lifestyle and trying to adjust to the real world.
“It’s about the mind state of [being] just out of college,” said Kyle Newacheck, the show’s director and co-creator, during a conference call interview. “When you have been free for so long and just partying every night, and then you have to get a job, [but] you’re still in the state of mind of partying and the job doesn’t mean that much.”
The season premiere last month was the No. 1 show in all of television for its Tuesday timeslot among men aged 18-24, according to TVbythenumbers.com.
“Workaholics” was created by its three stars – Anders Holm, Blake Anderson and Adam DeVine, along with its director, Kyle Newacheck – who all belong to the comedy group Mail Order Comedy.
The four have been working together for years, making Internet videos for YouTube and MySpace.
Holm said that the team was inspired by comedians like Andy Samberg, who was propelled to fame through YouTube videos made with his group The Lonely Island.
“We used to watch [Lonely Island] videos when we were making videos online and [we] thought they were doing big and funny things,” Holm said. “Then when they popped off, we kind of crossed our fingers hoping we could follow in that same position
Now that Mail Order Comedy has made its transition to television, Holm said that the characters in Workaholics are meant to reflect the real-life personas of the show’s creators.
“Yeah, we are kind of like our characters, except the ones you see on TV are amplified versions,” Holm said.
Anderson agreed that their characters include exaggerated aspects of the actors’ personalities.
“It’s quite possible that we’re dumber on TV than in real life, but the verdict’s still out on that,” Anderson said
Depicting a workplace setting with an irreverent attitude, the team compared the series to Office Space meets The Office.
The humor in Workaholics often reflects the zany Internet comedy that the group was making in its earlier days, which includes a video series featuring a wizard rap crew. Anderson said that while that phase was enjoyable, their newfound success brings a different kind of satisfaction.
“For so long we were doing Internet stuff and nobody was watching it,” Anderson said. “We were fans of it… but it is cool to have that response from people that they like [your work] too. It feels very rewarding.”
Catch Workaholics on Comedy Central Tuesdays at 10:30pm