John Hodgman on his Dicktown show: ‘There’s so much intergenerational humor’

Comedian John Hodgman turned to some series from the ’80s for his animated series Dicktown, about a former boy detective who is now approaching middle age.

“[Co-creator David Rees] and I was already talking about it, ‘Don’t you love the detective shows of the 1980s?'” Hodgman, 50, told the Post. “Especially the silly, glamorous ones like ‘Simon & Simon’ and ‘Riptide.’ We got this idea from these two characters who live on a houseboat and solve fun and glamorous puzzles. But then it became very clear that it wasn’t in our personal nature. So instead we came up with two sad guys who solve real small town mysteries.”

“Dicktown” (Thursdays at 10:00 p.m. on FXX and Hulu) follows John Hunchman (voiced by Hodgman), who lives in Richardsville, NC – known locally as “Dicktown” (hence the show’s title). Nearing 40, John is still solving low-stakes teen mysteries like stolen cheese recipes and renegade high school mascots. His only friend is his driver, hunk and former school bully David Purefoy (Rees).

The animated character John is seated on a couch while Daavid stands in front of him with his hands raised.
Former boy detective Jonh Hunchman (voiced by John Hodgman) on the left and his former thug and friend David (voiced by David Rees) on the right.

The show first aired in 2020 as part of the FXX anthology series Cake, but this is its premiere as a standalone series in its own right.

“My idea was that my character, John Hunchman, would be a former detective boy of some standing, like an Encyclopedia Brown,” said Hodgman, also known for his role “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart” “Parks and Recreation” and “The Tick.”

“And David’s character would be my former nemesis from high school who didn’t make it out of town. It was David’s idea that Hunchman should continue solving mysteries for teenagers since that was his big start. And now he’s still stuck in this town working for teenagers, which is the most humiliating thing imaginable. There is so much generational humor to play with.”

John Hodgman smiles
John Hodgman
Dave Allocca/startraksphoto.com

Although the main characters share their names with the series’ creators, they aren’t direct stand-ins, Hodgman said.

“John Hunchman is a version of me that went wrong,” he said. “John Hunchman was a weird only child who kept his own company and obsessed with facts and read encyclopedias all day. There is a certain resemblance to my background. But I’m fortunate to have people in my life – one of whom I’m married to now – who over the years have helped me to become a whole person who can interact with others and doesn’t find such confrontations terrifying. So luckily I was able to grow in a way that Hunchman couldn’t.

The animated character John Hunchman is seated at a table with a date.
John Hunchman clumsily tries to find a girlfriend for Dicktown.

“And David Purefoy is David Rees too – he’d be the first to tell you he didn’t know he was a bully in high school; He would casually pounce on people thinking it was all just a joke and later find out at high school reunions that they hated it. This is a person who has been bullied but should never be and is trying to make amends — maybe even by hanging out with John Hunchman, the most bullying person alive.”

Guest stars lending their voices to “Dicktown” include Amy Sedaris and Jamie Lee Curtisand the latter was particularly exciting for Hodgman.

“Working with her was a dream come true,” he said. “Not a nightmare – just a scary dream, an intimidating dream.”

https://nypost.com/2022/03/03/john-hodgman-on-his-show-dicktown-theres-so-much-generational-humor/ John Hodgman on his Dicktown show: ‘There’s so much intergenerational humor’

Dais Johnston

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