“Two years ago, I planned on killing myself in my garage. Now, I’m in my garage doing the best work I’ve ever done.”
This is how viewers are introduced to comedian and podcast host Marc Maron in his new independent comedy pilot, which premiered as part of the New York Television Festival‘s Primetime “Opening Night Comedy Extravaganza” last night in New York City. Presented with the eponymous working title Maron, the show opens with Maron speaking directly to the camera, sharing his neuroses with someone we’d assume is his therapist. But no — he’s just trying to connect with his cat’s veterinarian.
That type of straightforward, confessional comedy has been Maron’s trademark for more than two decades as a stand-up comic. Today, he reaches hundreds of thousands of listeners as the host of WTF with Marc Maron, a popular podcast — recorded in his garage at his home near L.A. that he calls the “cat ranch” — in which he engages comedians such as Robin Williams, Maria Bamford, Garry Shandling, Louis C.K., and more than 200 others in long-form conversations.
(“When I was going to a meeting at Fox [to pitch the pilot],” Maron revealed in a Q&A with the audience following the screening, “we were walking through the parking lot and Louis was driving out. He was just alone in his car, and he was like, ‘Hey, what’s going on?’ I said, ‘I’m meeting with Fox. We did a pilot presentation.’ He goes, ‘Really?’ And I said, ‘Yeah, it’s called Louie Also.”)
Last night’s NYTVF screening was the first time that the public, or Maron himself, had seen the finished pilot.
“I was excited to see me,” Maron said of his on-screen performance. “There were moments that I was embarrassed for me, because of the vulnerability that I was putting forth, but I think that’s a good thing. If I’m embarrassing me because I’m looking at myself going, ‘Holy fuck! You’re so raw and weird,’ I think we’ve accomplished something.” Read the rest of this entry »