Smarmy by Day, Snarky by Night

By , January 16, 2010

The New York Times has a story on Joel McHale, here are some of the highlights:

YOU’LL have to forgive Joel McHale if he was not his usual effervescent self the other day. Cramped into a tiny plastic library chair on the set of “Community,” he had spent the night mocking desperate bachelors and bachelorettes, Z-list stars and the news media’s coverage of Tiger Woods on his E! network series, “The Soup.” He then spent an estimated five minutes that morning with his wife and his sons, Eddie, 4, and Isaac, 1, before heading to his second job: an NBC sitcom on which he mocks the other misfits at the fictional Greendale Community College.

Half wearily and half sincerely, Mr. McHale said, “It’s a dream come true.”

Like a comic-book hero, Mr. McHale, 38, leads a double life, though perhaps not the kind you’re thinking of. Yes, he holds down two gigs, as a snarkier-than-thou cable television host and as a smarmy, Sam Malone-type sitcom lead who holds together a dysfunctional Spanish study group.

On “Community,” Mr. Harmon said, Mr. McHale serves as the “wayward son-turned-caretaker” of an ad-hoc ensemble that includes a pop-culture polymath (played Danny Pudi); a prudish good girl (Alison Brie) and an over-the-hill business magnate (Chevy Chase).

The difference between his two screen roles, Mr. McHale said, is that on “Community” his character must learn that he is not superior to his classmates and accept his place in their peculiar group. On “The Soup,” however, “almost every single human being is above some of the programming we show,” he said.

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