From the Archives: Unmasked with Jim Jefferies

Interviews for Unmasked

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I don’t mind a bad review from a journalist. i hate a 3 star review. I love a one.  I like fives and I like ones and three’s bug the shit out of me cause 3’s average. I like the person who fucking despises me.”

If people are ever irritated about  the way you talk about them maybe they shouldn’t have been a dickhead to begin with.”

Ron Bennington sat down with Jim Jefferies to tape an hour episode of Unmasked back in 2013 in front of a live studio audience. Jefferies might be at the top of the food chain for comedians who breathing fire on stage in front of packed theaters. This episode of Unmasked was recorded right after season one of his critically loved series Legit started airing, and he had just gotten the news that Legit was getting a second season.

In this episode, Jefferies tells great behind the scenes stories about the short-lived series (it only got two seasons, but deserved a much longer run) including the funniest John Ratzenberger story you’ll ever here- complete with a spot-on impression. He and series co-creator Peter O’Fallon also talk about using so many handicapped actors in the series, and why at one point they worried that element had gotten out of control.

Beyond Legit, Jim talks about his stand up, his family, and his demons. It’s such a great listen. Jefferies off-hand style of talking on stage may sound like he’s thinking on his feet, but he’s actually brilliant at constructing his sets and stories to sound that way.  He gives away a few trade secrets including how he got to be so good at telling long-form stories.  One of the greatest parts of the hour, is Jim’s retelling of a story that he has always found to be hilarious, but wasn’t getting laughs on stage.  “I’m gonna give it one more go,” he tells the audience before launching into this too-funny-to-be-true story about his mom getting stuck in the hold of a boat, while on a tour of the harbor– and how he eventually got her out.

Later in the hour, there’s a great conversation about Jim’s multiple addictions, and he shares some stories from sex addicts anonymous and talks at length about why he decided he had to finally curb his drinking. Here’s a hint, when you find out you’re in your friend’s death pool picks, you might want to rethink a few choices.

This year our readers voted Jim Jefferies the comedian of the year for 2016, and the honor is well deserved.  Jefferies is a quiet giant in comedy right now.  Not because he’s timid- quite the contrary- he just doesn’t chase media attention, so some of you might not be aware of what a force he is. He just released his 8th hour special in just 7 years and it’s as brilliant as the last.  He tours worldwide with a fanbase that is as passionate about Jefferies, as Jefferies is about everything he talks about. He is one of the smartest, and funniest comics working today.

One of the sharpest voices in comedy, Jim Jefferies’ episode of Unmasked was taped on March 28, 2013 in the Fishbowl studio at SiriusXM in New York City.


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