KZ Commentary: Episode 3, “Attack of the Kiosk”

No lie, this episode is one of my favorites. First of all, I love frozen yogurt, so it’s about that. Second of all, I finally got Ken Marino to do a voice in this.

You may recognize Ken’s voice from a lot of on-camera things he’s done, from MTV’s “The State” Adult Swim’s “Childrens Hospital,” and the new Yahoo online series “Burning Love.” I’ve known Ken for about ten years now, and the last time he did a voice for me was in “Hoodwinked.” Listen close — he’s “Racoon Jerry,” the raccoon police cop. A lot of his ad-libs made it into the film (“Hey, do you think Granny would mind if I go through her garbage?”). When I had the idea to create a nemesis for Krogzilla, Ken was the first person I thought of. And once again, he brought the ad-lib funny. I’ve seen this episode ten times and I STILL laugh at Regurgitor’s relentless needling of Krogzilla, all improvised. (“Yeah,  you’re between things? What things?…That’s the one thing. What’s the other thing?”) None of that stuff would ever be funny written on paper, and that’s the magical thing that happens when actors just start playing around. We had ten minutes of such great random, passive-aggressive put downs — the kind Ken does so well. Stuff like Regurgitor talking about his perfect abs and then ever-so-helpfully reminding Krog to “get to the gym once in a while, buddy, okay? Take care of yourself.”

It’s that insidious, subtle kind of attacking that is the worst, those passive-aggressive barbs that come from co-workers and “frenimies.”  I thought that would be a far worse enemy for Krogzilla than any fiery attack from the old days. Krog is at a low point and his worst nightmare is to see someone else like him doing very, very well.

There are other small touches to Regurgitor’s jerkishness. Did you catch the “man scarf?” The purple Humvee? I wanted him to wear an “Ed Hardy” T-Shirt, but we never got around to it. We never see his legs, but between you and me, I think he doesn’t wear pants.

The other great players here are David Storrs (Vince from our last episode) and Mary Alice Brady. Mary Alice plays two parts — she’s the little girl buying yogurt and then she’s Rita, the annoying operator of the RC Toys booth next door. She had a real good “tom boy” texture to her voice and I love their little back-and-forth. Dave gives me another ad-lib that always makes me laugh as the security guard. I say, “Hey, talk to her!” Dave instinctively does: “Well, hello ma’am!” Then it’s back to shouting at me. That’s that Groundlings training at work.

If you haven’t guessed by now, Krogzilla never keeps a job very long… so his time at the yogurt stand will be short-lived. But rest assured, Regurgitor will rear his ugly head again in future episodes.

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