Hannibal Buress isn’t afraid to speak his mind, and it seems to be working out just fine for him.
The 32-year-old comedian has an impressive track record, previously working as a sitcom writer for Saturday Night Live and 30 Rock, but admits he didn’t see himself as a television writer. “I saw myself as a comedian working as a television writer," he told Chicago last year. "I like being on camera, and I like writing for myself.”
That in-depth profile followed Buress as he filmed his Comedy Central special, Hannibal Buress: Live from Chicago—and it contained this prescient bit:
Buress says he’d eventually like to have his own TV series and a production house while continuing to act and do standup. “The ultimate thing is creating your own stuff and making projects for yourself,” he says. “That’s what Seth Rogen does. He’s writing and producing a lot of the movies that he’s the lead in.”
Comedy Central is granting his wish starting tonight, with a new variety talk show called Why? With Hannibal Buress. The show consists of the comedian, who describes his style as “rambling and unpredictable and can swing from cerebral mumblings to loud rants,” asking all of life’s most important questions. (A sample: “Why is the national spelling bee on ESPN?” and “Why do people act like olives taste good?”)
The show takes place in Los Angeles and shoots the same day that it airs. It will be the first time, apart from his Comedy Central special, that Buress plays a lead role on television. Each episode deals with current issues with sketches, man-on-the-street interviews, stand-up in front of a studio audience, and special guests.
Check out the official promo for the show:
And while you're at it, see the promos that didn’t get NBC’s stamp of approval.
“Why? With Hannibal Buress” premieres tonight at 9:30 p.m. central on Comedy Central.