*Jordan Peele, half of dynamic comedy duo “Key & Peele,” and the man behind the smash hit “Get Out” participated in a comedy actor roundtable for the Close Up With The Hollywood Reporter series, where he spoke about (Comedy Central) network execs and joked about when the race card comes in handy.
“They’re not afraid of going for it,” said Peele, adding that one of biggest note he gets from the network is, “What’s relevant?
Despite the support and creative freedom the network gave them, Peele acknowledges the importance of appealing to a young audience.
“We’re targeted at the kids, so we’ve got to write sketches about Drake. [Comedy Central] has allowed us to go places, they’ve even pushed us. We’re very lucky to have found that home,” he said.
Peele added that he and comedy partner Keegan-Michael Key pull the race card whenever they want to dodge certain notes from the network, “We have this wonderful thing called the race card, that we can play at any point,” Peele jokes. “Any time you get a note you don’t like you go, ‘It’s a black thing.’ And that’s the end of the conversation.”
Peele joined fellow comedians Thomas Middleditch (“Silicon Valley”), Ricky Gervais (“Derek”), Will Forte (“The Last Man on Earth”), Fred Armisen (“Portlandia”), and Don Cheadle (“House of Lies”) for the roundtable, where they discussed how they developed their humor and how they use it today.
The full comedy actor roundtable premieres Aug. 23 on SundanceTV and HollywoodReporter.com. The series will be composed of 14 hourlong episodes, with the first seven-episode block beginning Aug. 2 leading up to the Primetime Emmy Awards on Sept. 20.
The duo recently chatted with Cosmopolitan magazine about their risqué sense of humor. You can read the interview here, below is an excerpt.
You have lots of heavy topics with humor. How do you not offend people?
Peele: I think we do. But it’s that line between satire and bullying. We won’t go for something that feels so mean, the funny can’t overcome it.
Key: We make an effort to not traffic in cattiness.
Peele: ‘White Person Hoodie’ is a good example of a sketch I was nervous about. It’s really about something [the shooting of unarmed Florida teen Trayvon Martin]. When we showed it, the audience was tense. When they went wild at the reveal, I was like, ‘Thank god.’