ComedyNerd Checks In With The Sklar Brothers
The Sklar Brothers own a boatload of comedy specials and albums, have appearances on shows ranging from Law & Order to It’s Always Sunny, and rocked the podcast world before it became obligatory for comedians to do so. But the twins may arguably be best known for a little show they started on ESPN Classic way back in the day:
Like some bastard child of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and ESPN 8: The Ocho, Randy and Jason put their ridiculous spin on athletic endeavors, both popular and obscure, in one of the most successful sports/comedy mashups of all time.
Their secret? “The mistake that is often made when people try to make sports comedy shows is that they try to make a funny sports show,” says Randy, “when what they should be trying to make a comedy show that has sports as the backdrop.” That tiny shift in perspective is what makes the difference between “awkward fit” and “cult classic.”
Cheap Seats has never completely disappeared from the comedy landscape, at least not for long. The Sklars’ View from the Cheap Seats podcast is at 226 episodes and counting, while their new Patreon offers subscribers brand spanking new Cheap Seats video episodes every month.
And now, the brothers are exchanging their tickets in the Cheap Seats for the rarified air of the Nose Bleeds, a new venture launching this summer with UFC on its Fight Pass streaming service.
Ultimate Fighting Championship, or UFC, has taken off in the past decade (“legitimately the fourth sport right now," the brothers say). The sport has opened up its entire library to the Sklars, even from back in the days when its production sensibilities were a little wonkier than current broadcasts, with out-of-left-field commentary from non-UFC folks like NFL Hall of Famer James Brown and Fox and Friends stalwart Brian Kilmeade.
Part of the fun is that UFC has been legit for so many years now, it can go back and laugh at its early days, like “taking out your old high school yearbooks from the 90s and going, ‘Oh geez what was I thinking?’” For UFC fans, Nose Bleeds will be a hilarious deep dive into the sport’s history.
But it’s not just for fight aficionados. Like the backdoor variety show that was Cheap Seats, the new program will feature comedy sketches, field pieces, and in-studio character bits.
“We want the sketches to be as funny as the ones that we love on I Think You Should Leave and Mr. Show," says Jason. “We’re calling upon our favorite comedy friends to come and play characters. The goal is to create something that comedy fans, even if you don’t know much about the UFC, will say “Oh my God, this is a hilarious comedy show.”
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Top image: Matt Misisco