In late October Netflix premiered Patriot Act, the highly anticipated new series from stand-up comedian and former The Daily Show correspondent Hasan Minhaj. So far, the late night-esque program has released five of its “unprecedented” 32-episode order, and it seems to be going well for all parties concerned. Yet as Comedy Central conveniently noted at around the same time that Patriot Act was about to debut, Minhaj’s solo efforts aren’t the only thing he’s doing at the moment. There’s also Goatface, the comedy troupe he formed with Aristotle Athiras, Asif Ali and Fahim Anwar back in 2011.
The YouTube sensation is set to debut Goatface: A Comedy Special on Comedy Central, so Uproxx hopped on the phone with Athiras, Ali and Anwar to talk about it. Among other things, the three friends couldn’t get over the fact that turning their group’s sketches into a television special meant having a props department that, if asked, would provide them with multiple varieties of “fake urine” for a sketch. Yet what they’re even more excited about is the prospect of getting their names and faces out into a much broader (and, politically speaking, scarier) world.
“Ultimately, our goal is to get normalized,” says Athiras, who directs the special. “At the end of the day, we’re American. We all grew up here.”
Goatface has been together since 2011, but when did the idea for this TV special first come about?
Aristotle Athiras: It was really a product of timing. When we first started the group, we were together at the same level and we always knew that if one of us blew up in some form or fashion, the goal was always going to be to bring the show with them.
Fahim Anwar: This is a thing we tried to do earlier on, but I just don’t think our public presence was high enough to do it yet.
Asif Ali: Yeah, this was pre-woke America and Los Angeles.
Anwar: Our profile was rising a little bit and then the climate became what it is. So even though we were like a dog sensing a tsunami and we knew it was on the horizon, everyone back then was like, “Go away, dog!”