There’s an assumption that behind the eyes of a go-go boy, the ‘ole thought apparatus is running the computational equivalent of a half-eaten sandwich.
It’s a stereotype that is perhaps not entirely deserved.
But luckily for us, one that is thoroughly (and hilariously) embraced in Jimmy Fowlie’s Go-Go Boy Interrupted.
The sketch comedy show details the antics of 30-year-old West Hollywood go-go Danny Carter who’s not a boy, not yet a woman. Or “aging out” as Jimmy calls it.
Fired from his job and unarmed with any real world skills after spending the last decade gyrating for dollar bills, Danny embarks on a journey to find his purpose.
Queerty chatted with Jimmy about the show, gay life in L.A. and his time at the famed Groundlings Theater.
So I have it on good authority (OK, lets face it I knew you back then) that you spent a good amount of time as a go-go dancer at Tiger Heat while you were in college. How much of this character is based on those experiences?
Well, I was totally a mess in college. I was one of those horrible people who would say, “I hate drama” and then get black out drunk and cause a fist fight. I actually don’t even drink anymore. I guess it kind of would have been my story if I’d never stopped partying. Danny’s never done anything else, he doesn’t have any skills.
There’s definitely stuff that I pull from my own life — anyone who has had a crazy party phase can relate. You wake up in a bed in Sherman Oaks and think “who are you?” But this is a satire and everything is heightened.
Like in the show I have this boss who is a drag queen (played by the hilarious Drew Droege) and he’s just awful to my character – I mean everyone is, everyone hates Danny.
I take it you weren’t as universally reviled in the club?
No, because where I worked everyone was nice and chill. I mean the go-go boys were out of control though. But I think I was the worst. And I was constantly getting thrown out of clubs for underage drinking, fighting, and “falling asleep” or what I have learned is actually called passing out.
Well, Danny doesn’t have comedy to fall back on like you. It’s hard to imagine him venturing out into the “real world.”
Yeah, that is kind of what I wanted to explore. I feel like as gay men living in L.A., you can get away with being an idiot. You can be so dumb, and really get away with it. I think a lot of times youth and sexuality are kind of a currency for people, and at some point you are going to hit that edge where it’s no longer serving you.
Have you hit that edge at all?
Yes. I actually peaked at 23. Another interesting thing is that gay guys can be so cruel to each other when really we’re in the center of this huge movement but lots of people just want to tear each other down. We should all be helping one another.
But you still live in West Hollywood?
Yeah, I love West Hollywood. I think it is amazing. I can walk to my friends’ houses, and play dodgeball. I love living here. Except for the area where the bars are because it kind of starts to smell like lube.
Sounds messy. Better to stick to the Groundlings then?
Yeah. I owe a lot to that theater. I had so many awesome teachers and directors, Jordan Black, Kevin Kirkpatrick and Karen Maruyama, to name a few, and made amazing friends. It was like my home.
And you’re still performing in Sunday Company?
No, I actually got cut, which sucked.
They don’t say, which is kind of traumatizing. But from what I could gather they didn’t think I was a good actor.
That is pretty harsh.
Meh. It’s kind of true. But yeah, I was sad. My friends and I joked that I was going to go crazy and turn into a sixty-year-old man with long stringy hair that lives in a studio apartment with 11 dogs and would visit the theater and be like, “I used to perform here? Who are the new players?”
But the Groundlings have been really supportive of my show, and they invited me to teach at the school and ask me to do their improv shows. It all worked out. Ultimately it was probably for the best because now it frees me up to do do my own thing.
Here’s a teaser for the live sold-out show happening June 30th at The Groundlings: