All the Sillies: An Intimate Q&A With Leafly Comedy Tour Headliner T.J. Miller
Leafly is kicking off the new year with a multi-city comedy tour, and you’re invited! Our first show is in Seattle and features actor and comedian T.J. Miller, who currently stars as arrogant entrepreneur (and cannabis consumer) Erlich Bachman on HBO’s “Silicon Valley.” Leafly spoke to Miller about the upcoming season of the show, his bizarrely named line of fragrances, and what it’s like to tell jokes to Seattle’s cannabis crowd.
Want more? RSVP to the first stop on the Leafly Comedy Tour — Saturday, Jan. 2, in Seattle. Tickets are FREE!
Leafly: Thanks for taking the time to talk with us! Where did we catch you?
T.J. Miller: I am on Hollywood Boulevard. And this guy, he just came up to me and he goes, “You’re that one dude.” Oh boy. That’s what you get for walking down Hollywood Boulevard. I’m that dude.
L: We’re thrilled to have you headlining our Seattle show. How do you feel about performing in front of a cannabis crowd?
T.J.: It’s going to be a badass show. I’m really psyched about it. And it’s funny to me, because I’ve performed in Denver a lot now, so I’m getting a better sense of when the crowd’s a little high. You know how to perform for people who are drinking, but it’s a new thing that an entire audience would be high — not to say that this one will be.
The truth is that I’ve kinda kept my distance from all cannabis stuff. For instance, I won’t do “Getting Doug with High,” which is a hilarious show with Doug Benson. But I don’t know, I think that’s all shifted. I work in a lot of different mediums and a lot of different genres and a lot of different types of audiences. But I think it’s getting to the point where it’s OK to imagine marijuana as mainstream, and you’re not, you know, chided as being a marijuana user.
“Silicon Valley,” it also sort of says, look, he’s R-rated. And I need people to kind of understand a little bit more that I’m doing comedy for adults, because they’re the ones that constantly see tragedy in their lives and need a distraction.
L: Let’s talk “Silicon Valley.” What can you tell us about season three without being blackballed by HBO?
T.J.: Oh boy, you’re asking me about the secret inner workings of a very good television show. You know, let me put it this way: The guys are going to just absolutely have some real trials and tribulations. They’re going to have some achievements, but they’re really going to have a lot of setbacks as well.
L: We noticed you have a fragrance line with some pretty amazingly named scents — Wet Garbage, Warm Urine, Toddler Body. Which one do you usually wear?
T.J.: I wear Wet Garbage, which is our flagship scent with Ironic Luxury. And my wife wears Rose Petal Pistol. But it just, you know, it depends on the day. Do I have a big meeting? Am I going to a gala event where everyone has to be under 5-foot and I’m crouching the entire time? You just don’t know. It’s Hollywood. It’s just crazy stuff.
L: If you were going to name a new cannabis strain, what would you call it?
T.J.: Oh, I’m actually going to have my own cannabis strain! You have to understand, I am the joke that I’m making fun of. Does that make sense? It’s sort of an absurdist thing that collapses into itself. But I am going to have a strain of cannabis that’s called the Erlich, and it’s from Northern Cali.
I think the best thing you can do is have a hybrid or a sativa that really, you know, that you feel creative, it gives you energy. What’s interesting about marijuana is it doesn’t always have to be a comedown deal. And some people respond differently to indica or sativa. But I think the Erlich strain will be great.
L: You’ve played Seattle before. How would you say the crowd here compares?
T.J.: I really like Seattle. I don’t know if you ask that question a lot and get that answer, but the truth is that, like, I don’t like performing in San Francisco, for instance, and I’m pretty vocal about that. Seattle, though, it’s a very good merging of people who are sort of cultural, they’re with it, but it’s a very livable and nice city. It has a really good comedy scene, which is a sign of it being healthy. Also it has a pretty chill art scene, and my wife’s an artist so she’s excited to come up there. It’s a great city. As far as Seattle goes, truly it’s kind of like Portland. They’re comparable, for sure. It’s a different vibe. Many more people are on bicycles and have really, really long beards in Portland.
L: Let’s say a cannabis website asked you an open-ended question about your other ventures. What, hypothetically, might you plug?
T.J.: Well, if I was in that situation, I think I would have to imagine a scenario where there would be a world where I talked about a podcast, “Cashing In with T.J. Miller.” It’s pretty funny. My buddy Frank Cash does this podcast, and nobody wants to do it. And so I always fill in. Basically I’m one of the only guests he’s ever had. Maybe the only guest. I think his son did it one time.
I’m doing prep for “Deadpool,” we’re in the middle of shooting season three of “Silicon Valley,” and we’re getting sorted on “How to Train Your Dragon 3.” It’s actually a pretty busy time. I sold a show called “Gorburger” to Comedy Central; they’re making a season of that. You gotta go see it. Just Google it and watch a couple of the YouTube videos. It seems ridiculous: It’s a giant, blue, space alien who took over a Japanese morning show to interview, like, indie rock bands and Henry Rollins, all this insanity. Doing that and then also, yeah, doing standup. I’m gearing up for an HBO special. I’m lucky to have people want to bring me in and let me do my sillies.
L: You’re in “Deadpool” alongside Ryan Reynolds. Was he pretty intimidated by your looks?
T.J.: Yeah. He couldn’t look me directly in the eyes for fear of getting lost in them.
Don’t miss the chance to lose yourself in T.J.’s eyes — RSVP to the Leafly Comedy Tour show in Seattle! (In case you missed it, tickets are free.)