Barely Legal Comedy's Olivia DeLaurentis and Sydney Heller on Their Pandemic-Themed Comedy Stir Crazy
Off the success of their Snapchat series Apocalypse Goals, Barely Legal Comedy's Olivia DeLaurentis and Sydney Heller are bringing the laughs (through a cotton mask) with a new show, Stir Crazy. You ever wonder what social distancing would be like if you spent more or less all of your free time with somebody who doesn't actually live with you? That's kind of what's going on here, as DeLaurentis and Heller play heightened versions of themselves -- co-dependent best friends who can't quite figure out how to live without one another, and so...don't. Not that they're flaunting social distancing guidelines or anything. Just that their comedy happens via FaceTime or Zoom.
The comedy series is a few minutes at a shot, twice a week, which makes it not too dissimilar to Apocalypse Goals, or the other Barely Legal Comedy stuff you can find on YouTube. The decision to make a show that's not just produced during the pandemic, but about it, was kind of a no-brainer.
"Syd and I in real life are best friends," DeLaurentis told ComicBook.com. "We've known each other like nine years, and we wanted to make a show about, I can't really see her right now, even though I usually see her every day. So we wanted to make the show about two co-dependent best friends who can only see each other over FaceTime, and how that makes you go crazy — which is good, because we're both crazy."
"Everything that takes place at a time that's real, is better if it's built on the relationships and the people being nuts, instead of the time being nuts," Heller explained. "We all know the time is nuts."
That informs one of the show's guiding philosophies: don't make things worse for people. The pair realize that the pandemic is stressful, and they want to help bring release. The idea, they said, is to drive home (in part) that these characters would not really be thriving under the best circumstances -- and that a global pandemic just heightens their awkwardness.
"I think the biggest helpful thing is that all of the sketch ideas that we start out with all go in a range of, this is two people whose big problem is that they're not together, or their big problem is that they don't understand this and aren't looking into this hard enough to make educated decisions," Heller told ComicBook.com. "Instead, they're just hopelessly paranoid. So coming from that lens instead of the lens of normal people in a global pandemic, it's like, these are two people that in any situation would not handle it well. So that's easier."
Above, you can check out the trailer for Apocalypse Goals, which centers around two women dealing with the literal end of the world. In Stir Crazy, it just...kind of seems that way.
"Our other show with Snapchat is an apocalypse comedy," DeLaurentis said. "We were turning in our second season of it just as all this started. And then Snap was like, 'Actually, can we also do a different show that's just quarantine-themed?'"
"We don't even say Covid, we only say the virus," Heller added. "It's trying to be an escape rather than, 'hey, you guys, remember?'"
"We're freaked out, everyone's freaked out," DeLaurentis explained. "It's fun to see [the characters] doing something relatable. On Instagram, I always see fun mental health accounts, that have fun colors, and it's like 'what to do during quarantine!' And we're just adding a kind of sketch, comedic slant to that without really making fun of what's going on, but just being silly."
You can catch new episodes of Stir Crazy Tuesdays and Thursdays on Snapchat.0comments