Written by: Gary M. Kenny, CC2K Comics Editor
We chatted with the cast of Neon Joe, Werewolf Hunter while at the NYCC’15. Never heard of the show? Well, this five part Adult Swim mini-series will air all week long starting on December 7th. Set in the pretend sleep enclave of Garrity, Vermont (aka “B&B Town, USA!”), Neon Joe, Werewolf Hunter is the story of a neon-clad man with a mysterious past and a highly specialized skill set – hunting werewolves. When a sudden plague of inexplicable werewolf fatalities strikes, the Garrity sheriff’s department finds itself in over its head and the fate of the townspeople is left to Neon Joe. Will he catch the beast before the next full moon, or will it live another day and kill again?
This half-hour live-action mini-series is created by Jon Glaser (Girls, Parks and Recreation), produced by PFFR, and stars Glaser as “Neon Joe” with Scott Adsit (30 Rock), Stephanie March (Law & Order: SVU), Steve Little (Eastbound and Down), and Steve Cirbus (Delocated).
CC2K: My first question for Neon Joe, Werewolf Hunter is: Huh? Can you explain?
JON GLASER: The show is about a guy who wears neon and hunts werewolves and you will discover a little bit about why in the show. Neon (the color type), for Joe, is like reverse camouflage. He just wants to be out in plain view with these creatures to let them know I’m here, deal with it. I’m not hiding. He’s making his presence known; he’s not trying to hide and be subtle about it. Mostly it’s just stupid.
CC2K: It sounds hysterical. How did the show come about?
JON GLASER: When I was on Jimmy Fallon, maybe 3 years ago to promote the series final of Delocated. I just wanted to do something stupid for the interview. Just to amuse myself, I took two pieces of clothing that I owned: a neon hoodie and knit cap from American Apparel and a pair of “Coors Light” sweatpants. These are both things that I’ve owned for comedy bits that I’ve done on stage. I arbitrarily wore them on the show. “I am really sad that Delocated is done but I’m really excited about my new project it’s called Neon Joe, Werewolf Hunter. I’m dressed as the character right now and that’s all we really have right now but we are excited.” The Coors Light pants was the old “Silver Bullet” joke; that’s an old joke. There was no show, it was all a joke, and there was a nothing.
CC2K: So you got a phone call the next day and Adult Swim was like “let’s make it?”
JON GLASER: Pretty much. I have a history with Adult Swim and at the time I was thinking I can see them thinking: “I know that’s a joke but it sounds (the concept) funny. It’s a funny name for the show.” And that’s kind of what happened. They asked can Neon Joe be something and I said sure. They asked for a pilot and I sat down to write it and there was literally nothing. It wasn’t a passion project, I wasn’t like “I want to make a werewolf show,” it was quite the opposite.
CC2K: Stephanie you are known for your role on Law and Order and Scott with 30 Rock, what drew you both to this?
STEPHANIE MARCH: It’s such a wacky, interesting, and strange project. Jon’s writing is so good, such an excellent cast, not one reason not to do it. Not one.
SCOTT ADSIT: (the) Sweet Adult Swim Money.
CC2K: The show’s concept sounds very unique and really funny.
JON GLASER: I use the words dumb and stupid a lot and that to me is funny. I feel like it’s obnoxious to say that it’s really funny.
CC2K: So the show isn’t too serious?
JON GLASER: Well, the show does take it’s self very seriously, it does play itself like a drama and the tone is a very much like a dramatic show but it is a comedy. When you watch it, you will see it as dumb as it should be. The show does not mirror or parody. It has a “Jaws” feel in the sense that it takes place in a small town in New England. This creature is causing havoc and the people in town are not sure how to deal with it. They don’t want to close down their businesses. That became the theme when I was trying to figure out what the show was. From there we just started writing scripts. Adult Swim liked it and they wanted more. We added more weird and stupid stuff to it and it became what the show is.
SCOTT ADSIT: We couldn’t predict where (the script) was going to go and it does go to some very strange places. It’s all very silly and Jon will say “stupid” as well. It’s not though; it’s really smart silly. The places it (the script) goes are very emotionally driven and very human but it’s all kind of curtained in this ridiculousness. If you find Jon Glasser funny, this is the show to watch because you will find him at his funniest. He’s playing a really confident asshole and he does that really, really well.
CC2K: With the title Neon Joe, you can tell the show is very character driven. What is it like to play a character in a world filled with werewolves.
STEPHANIE MARCH: I play the Mayor, I’m definitely the straight man in the show. Jon is really great; he has a really specific idea about how each character sounds and how they kind of play against one another. Every opportunity I have, we use to joke that I act in just “faces.” I roll my eyes and look annoyed at them, that’s my character right there. Worked hard on that.
STEVE CIRBUS: I’m the town sheriff and I make the call to bring him in. He’s a mercenary, gun for hire. Throughout the course of the season, Neon Joe and I work side by side.
STEVE LITTLE: I play Cleve Menu, town janitor, I look up to Neon Joe. He shows up at the town meeting and he takes me under his wing. I want to be a werewolf hunter, too. It’s probably Adult Swim’s most emotional show. It has strong family ties.
SCOTT ADSIT: Bar owner, I made a really bold choice on day one of the pilot and Jon never corrected me. To play someone who is a little step or two behind and really eager to get involved with what’s ever happening. Maybe a little dumb.
CC2K: Speaking about Jon, what was it like working with Jon?
STEPHANIE MARCH: This is the first time I have ever worked with Jon, he does play a confident asshole but he is nothing like that as a director. He’s one of the nicest people.
STEVE CIRBUS: This was the second time I worked with him. I think he wears both hats nicely.
STEVE LITTLE: Anytime I’ve done something and you are with the creator and he or she’s acting (in it), it’s better. It’s one vision.
CC2K: How does the town discover Neon Joe?
STEVE CIRBUS: I don’t want to give to much away but there might be an infomercial.
Neon Joe, Werewolf Hunter airs December 7th on Adult Swim.
Gary is a husband, father, fireman, comic reader, gamer, body builder, and rocker. He also is a co-owner of a bakery in upstate NY. He likes to tell everyone his favorite band is the Beatles, when his actual favorite band is the Alkaline Trio.