Tim & Eric
In late 2012, the night after Tim & Eric’s run of two Melbourne performances, Tim Heidecker took to a swanky Melbourne haunt for a bumbling, chaotic, and brilliant stand up set. Assuming a wry caricature of a conservative comic, Tim mangled a routine in which he fantasised a scenario where Donald Trump gives Obama a trademark “you’re fired”, long before any genuine presidential aspirations from the billionaire. Speaking ahead of Tim & Eric’s live return to ‘Stralia and Zealand, Tim answers the question: can Trump make America great again?
“In a way, he already has. He’s elevated the discourse to such a respectable place. He’s made great people say great things,” he deadpans. “He is a great man, and I’ll expect he’ll win. We’ll be saving a lot of money as a country: we won’t need a vice president, that’s for sure. It’s all very positive.”
Tim & Eric have kept busy since their ground-breaking Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! concluded its five season run in 2010, pursuing a number of varying projects both together and solo. This year saw the duo become published self-help gurus with Zone Theory, a book that brims with cultish overtones. “Well the Zone Theory is an easy way for you to – I’m assuming you’re in bad shape, if you’re a guy writing for a free paper, things can’t be going too well,” (he’s right) “So this book provides you with seven easy steps to achieve the perfect life. In a matter of seconds, you’ll be able to fix all your problems and become a perfect person. That’s the best pitch I can give. You can’t get better than that.”
As for solo pursuits for Tim, he had a recent star turn with a cameo in the recently released blockbuster Fantastic 4. “Well it’s funny, I came from our show Bedtime Stories, which aired in the States last year, then the next week I went to Baton Rouge, Louisiana to shoot a couple of scenes for this movie. And it was so similar, the scenes I was in were in a little house, in this little room. It would have been like something we would be shooting. Small crew, intimate, director is right there. It was kind of easy. It didn’t take a lot of readjusting or anything. I was just gonna say, to describe it as a blockbuster, I hope you’re being sarcastic. It was a big disaster. I don’t really care.”
With a fruitful creative partnership that has lasted more than a decade and influenced a new generation of comedians, Tim & Eric’s bond is greater than ever. “I don’t know what it is that makes it work. I think we both bring different skillsets, we’re both good at a bunch of different things. We’re amused by each other. It’s been nice to have a partner in all this to bounce off. The last thing you want in this business is to be alone and not know who to trust. We keep changing it up, we don’t get stuck in one certain style. We’re changing to make us stay interested in the work we’re doing.”
As for projects on the horizon, that creative bond will continue to provide the goods – including another spin-off season for John C Reilly’s Dr Steve Brule.
“We’ve just finished making these two half-hour episodes of Bedtime Stories – which was our big project of last year. It’s like Twilight Zone meets Black Mirror meets Tim & Eric. This year we just focused on these two half-hour stories, where both of them feel cinematic, dramatic in a horrifying way. We’ve spent a lot of time working on that, and just finishing up now. Hopefully it will come out later this year. We’re going back out there with Dr Steve Brule for another season, we’re writing that now to air next year.” For your health.
With another trailer produced for their return to Australia and New Zealand – to say “hello one more time with our humour” – it appears Tim & Eric are excited to return Down Under. “I always suspected I would love Australia, and I did. People were great, food was great. There seems to be a secret there where your cities work really well. Maybe I didn’t spend enough time there to see the other side of it. It was clean, a very positive experience. I was humbled by how appreciative the audiences were that we came down there. I forget about the distance, and it was weird for people to comprehend that we made the trek down there. I appreciate it all.”
BY LACHLAN KANONIUK