If you’re not familiar with Murr, Joe, Sal and Q — truTV’s Impractical Jokers — you’ve been seriously missing out. These loveable guys, who have been best friends since high school, are the funniest people on TV today. The guys take their overly awkward hidden challenges/punishments and have at it with Britain bystanders in Impractical Jokers: British Invasion in their one-hour midseason premiere tonight (10pmET on truTV).
So are Brits more gullible than us Americans? The guys got a rude awakening.
“No. You know, I think the exact opposite,” says James “Murr” Murray, who was on set filming when we caught up with him yesterday. “I think the British were far, far more intelligent than us dumb Americans. It was kind of the reverse of our show in America. In America, we usually are a little bit smarter than the people we’re pulling jokes on, and sometimes they’re a little naive to what we’re doing, but in the UK — man — they called us out on everything we did. As a matter of fact, in one scene a guy in a pub actually says to Q, ‘I knew Americans were dumb. I didn’t know you were this dumb.’ We end the whole episode with him saying that. It’s hysterical.”
With their worldwide fan base the guys have had to adjust the format of their show to avoid being recognized. They no longer do punishments and challenges in larger public spaces like ballparks, stadiums and the boardwalk and instead opt for places where they can control the people coming in and rotate out someone if they are recognized.
And, unlike some groups who split and go solo after reaching their fame and fortune, or who are fed up with the bullshit (literally, in their case) of having to work with one another day in and out, these guys have remained unusually grounded and still honestly like one another.
“I think we’re like a very long, bad marriage,” Murr shares. “We’ve been married for so long. What are we going to do? We’re all 40. What are we going to do at this point? I’m not going to go out and make new friends, you know? That ship has sailed a long time ago. I’m stuck with the ones I got. I think the expression is best friends are the worst. I love them and I hate them, and we’re going to die together, and that’s the way it is. I think it helps honestly that it took us 10 years to get a TV show. We worked really, really hard as The Tenderloins Comedy Show for a long time to try to get a TV show, and we had a lot of failures along the way. We sold two other pilots before Impractical Jokers. One to A& E and one to Spike TV, and neither of them went to series. I think when you’re friends for 26 years and you go through that kind of, you know, trying for so long and failing and finally succeeding, it kind of glues you together for the rest of your life.”
WANT MORE WITH “IMPRACTICAL JOKERS” …. NEW SERIES TO FOLLOW
Immediately following the midseason premiere tonight is the series premiere of Impractical Jokers: Inside Jokes (11pm ET), where the guys take fan-favorite episodes of the show and provide behind-the-scenes stories and fun facts about the episodes.