Nick Kroll On The Creation Of The ‘Big Mouth’ Valentine’s Special, And The Origins Of Rick The Hormone Monster

Features Editor
02.08.19

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When I was in the eighth grade I worked up the confidence to ask a girl to be my Valentine. She said yes and I had a spring in my step for the rest of English class. That faded about 45 minutes later when, at lunch, I asked her if she wanted to go to a movie and she turned me down flat and, if memory serves correct, reversed her Valentine decision. The point of this is to say that I super-duper recall the adolescent Valentine’s Day angst and psychological trauma that Nick Kroll and company are trying to convey in the Big Mouth Valentine’s Day special (double) episode that just hit Netflix.

If you’re in a love stinks (yeah, yeah) kind of place or similarly recall clumsy attempts at living up to what we’ve been brainwashed to believe that Valentine’s Day is supposed to be, then this episode is for you. And our interview with Big Mouth co-creator and star Nick Kroll is for you if you want to learn a little bit more about the special (and its amazing musical numbers), the origins of Rick The Hormone Monster’s voice (and how he was saved from the trash heap), and why it’s important that the show gets created in a bubble.

When did you know you were going to do a special episode?

Good question. I think it was after season two, we… After season one came out and people were pretty quickly, like “when is season two coming count?” Which felt like it took forever and audiences were really kind of clamoring for more, that we thought about, is there something that we could do that would give the audience something where they weren’t having to wait so long before they caught more of the show? And it then became very clear very quickly that Valentine’s Day was kind of perfect because it felt like it was between the two seasons. And also, just Valentine’s Day is such a rich area for middle school and for the kids because it deals with so many of the issues that kids are dealing with. You know, who’s your crush? Are you heartbroken? Are you alone? All those things that you really, all of a sudden in middle school, start to think about. And it felt like the perfect area for a special.

Do you want to do more specials like this in between future seasons?

Um, you know, I think we’re always going to be interested in doing different things and breaking form, et cetera. You know, it’s partly a workflow thing. There are a lot of things at hand to make it work and this just happened to come together perfectly for us.

Is season three far, far away?

Season three will come out in the fall. For technical reasons, like how the mechanics of the Netflix site works, this is considered the beginning of season three. And the truth is, it was the beginning of season three. We wrote it and then rolled right into writing season three. Which, people don’t quite understand the timeline, so it’s fine. I think we treated this as the beginning of season three, so we start to pay off some of the stuff that was happening at the end of season two and set up what will become a lot of season three.

So there are definitely takeaways from this that people can think about as far as what season three is going to mean?

It very much serves as a bridge between season two and three.

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