What we learned from Fred Armisen’s Q&A session on Reddit

One of my favorite Internet time-wasters is Reddit’s “Ask Me Anything” feature. The format is simple: users submit questions to an individual with some remarkable or interesting characteristic. And sometimes, even celebrities get involved and offer a few moments of their time to answer users’ questions, like Stephen Colbert or Louis C.K.

Last night, Fred Armisen of Saturday Night Live and Portlandia answered Redditors’ questions about anything and everything. In case you don’t want to read through the several thousand questions and comments, though, we’ll help you out with a Cliffs Notes version of the AMA.

So here’s what we learned from Fred:

Some ideas are harder to implement than others, in spite of the show’s absurdist style: “We wanted to do something about the tram system in Portland. But there was no way to do it. How do you end it? What is it? So we just left it.”

Fred estimates a hefty 60 percent of the show to be improvised.

They’re also trying to do shows on other cities in a similar vein – everyone, let’s cross our fingers for Camden-ia. Rough!

The second season includes a disgusting number of kickass guests: “Jeff Goldblum, Miranda July, Ed Begley Jr., Steve Jones, Johnny Marr, Andy Samberg, Amber Tamblyn, Penny Marshall, Tim Robbins, Jack McBrayer, Kristen Wiig.”

Number one guest star Fred hopes for? Prince. Too much epic for one show, though, I think.

Portlandia has been Fred’s favorite project to work on. And so has SNL (note: favorite means one, dude, not two –ed.).

His favorite character to play on SNL is Garth (of Garth and Kat fame), and his favorite character on Portlandia to play is Candace.

No concrete future plans for Fred in terms of work, particularly since he loves where he is right now: “I never think ahead too far. I will say that I love it. But every time I try to plan things out, something completely different happens. After? Movies, more Portlandia, and another type of TV show maybe?”

Some of Fred’s influences are Mad magazine, Benny Hill, SNL, his dad (awww), George Carlin, Steve Martin and Martin Lawrence. His career, though, started “By accident. [He] started making tapes of [him] interviewing musicians.”

Fred would rather fight 50 duck-sized horses than a horse-sized duck.

You can read the whole shebang here. And obviously, you can check out Fred and Carrie Brownstein on Portlandia every Friday at 10 pm ET. Oh, and check out our super recap of the second season premiere!

Carrie Andersen

In addition to writing for Laughspin, Carrie is a graduate student in Austin, Texas, where she researches popular culture, new media, music, and social movements. When not reading or writing in any official capacity, she spends her time playing the drums, watching crappy TV, and eating copious amounts of tacos and barbecue. She also blogs sporadically at carrieandersen.com.

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