When you tune in to the Super Bowl this Sunday, keep an eye out for a Shock Top ad starring actor and comedian T.J. Miller. Why? Couple reasons. 1.) It’s amusing. 2.) In exchange for telling you about that commercial just now, we were able to call up Miller in London and talk to him for a good 15 minutes about a bunch of different things, including his recent “awkward” appearance on Stephen Colbert’s show, how much tail his wonderfully arrogant character on Silicon Valley, Erlich Bachman, probably gets, and his primary purpose in the upcoming Deadpool (out February 12th). Here’s the entire, uncensored conversation. Enjoy.
“At this point, if people don’t know that I’m a maniac, then they’re not doing their research.”
What are you doing in London?
Promoting Deadpool. The movie is amazing. So Fox is really getting behind it. Hence the reason that I’m in Europe for four days. Just gonna be like: “It’s a great movie! See it, Europe! Come and see it!”
From the look of the trailer, Ryan Reynolds is disfigured or masked in the majority of the movie. Did you feel extra pressure to bring the handsome?
No, no, no. My job in any given project is to have a toddler body and a protruding jaw. So I just rested on those laurels. I rested on those laurels and hardys!
Well, I saw the extended teaser for the Shock Top Super Bowl commercial. It’s funny.
What can you tell people about it?
Absolutely nothing. [laughs] I’m kidding. I was approached by Budweiser, and I said, “Well, I don’t know about a Bud or Bud Light ad.” They said, “No, it’s Shock Top.” I said, “Well, that’s interesting.” Because that’s a little bit left of center, a little bit different. An alternative flavor. And they said, “We want the brand to be unfiltered and irreverent, but we also want to do it low-key.” Because that was another big thing for me, not to have some incredibly expensive Super Bowl spot with a million donkeys and helicopters made of diamonds. That was not the idea. The idea was to have sort of a laidback, unfiltered conversation with a talking beer tap head that only I can see.
OK, so just to confirm, there will be no helicopters with diamonds in your Super Bowl commercial?
Nope, no helicopters with diamonds. All we could afford was rubies. It’s a smaller brand in the AB family!
And then you’re also going to be choosing your favorite Super Bowl ads afterwards, right?
Yeah, I think that’s really funny. The guy that voices the wedge head is really quite fun. And so we’re going to kind of riff some jokes about which Super Bowl commercials we liked and which ones we didn’t. And I can assure you: We’re going to be unfiltered. No one will be filtering our opinions about the Super Bowl commercials.
UPDATE: See their Super Bowl ad roundup—featuring a pretty solid Christopher Walken impression by the wedge head—here.
Do you have a favorite Super Bowl commercial of all time?
I think it’s that Apple one. With the Orwellian future that Apple needs to destroy and take over. But I like any Super Bowl commercial with choice comedy, like really good comedy. Or ones that are self-aware like the Budweiser one with the puppy. But it’s usually the Bud ads that are the best, you know? Gotta get those Clydesdales in there! Love those hairy ankles on those Clydesdales! They’ve got furry, furry little ankles, those horses.
Switching gears: Your appearance on Stephen Colbert’s show recently was called “awkward” and “tense” by some folks in the media. Did you find it awkward?
No, I think he just knows what he’s doing. See, the problem is that my fucking wife Kate made me take off this jacket that I was wearing that was supposed to cover my hands so that the skeleton hands look like they’re my actual hands. And then I didn’t have the jacket, so then it just looks like I’m touching a man’s face while holding onto skeleton hands. So I think he correctly observed, something’s gone wrong with this bit and it’s time to move on. But at this point, if people don’t know that I’m a maniac, then they’re not doing their research. If you’re sort of upset that I smashed an egg on my face on national television, then it’s likely I’m not the right fit for your show.
Was he pissed at all afterwards?
Oh no, he’s got the whole rest of the show to do. He doesn’t give a shit. He does five of those things a week. It’s one of the hardest jobs in show business. So there’s nothing indicating that he would not have me back or something. I just think that in some ways it was kind of a blessing because I was on there to promote the Critics’ Choice Awards [which Miller hosted]. And it finally solidified to people, like, this dude’s a maniac. His brand of comedy is just ridiculous. That’s his style. Just out-of-control nonsense. And that was the thing with Colbert too. It was like, Steve, if you’re going to have me on, let me do stuff that hasn’t been done before. And know that I’m Carrot Top’s legal cousin. You know? Through marriage. Right?
Yeah totally. I’m with you. The media makes a big deal out of everything. It actually wasn’t that tense or awkward. It got you attention and nobody got hurt.
Well, and I don’t care. I wasn’t trying to make him uncomfortable. That’s the type of comedy I do. I don’t think he was uncomfortable. I don’t think he gives a shit. I think in the scheme of all the fucking interviews he’s done, that probably rates really, really low on the most awkward list, you know what I mean? And people seem to forget that also, I think.
I’m also a big fan of Silicon Valley and your character on that show.
Oh, no kidding? You have low standards. Keep going.
No, it’s great. You remind me so much of this boss I had at UrbanDaddy, Lance Broumand. You’ve got this CEO-type arrogance that really works.
Oh yeah, you gotta have it. And I meet so many people that go, “Hey, at my company, I’m you! I’m the Erlich of my company.” And I’m like, “That’s not good. Nobody likes you. You’re kind of an abrasive asshole. And you’re arrogant and not very self aware.” They’re like, “Yeah, totally, isn’t that cool?! You’re me on the show!” I’m like, “I’m sorry, but talk to you later. Talk to you never!”
Is Erlich ever gonna get a girlfriend?
Fuck no, man, he’s tearing through pussy coast to coast. Uh-oh, I bet Anheuser-Busch is happy about that comment. Um, no, no, I think the sole thing that Erlich is concerned with is becoming an icon. That’s all he cares about. Now, he gets plenty of tail, but I think he thinks any sort of committed relationship would be a hindrance to him becoming this Jobs-ian icon that he envisions himself becoming.
By the way, in that Shock Top ad, the talking beer tap head pitches a movie idea to you. Do you ever get pitched movie ideas in real life?
Yeah, people send me scripts. I get these scripts where even by the title I know I’m never going to do them. They’re like, “Oh, you’re going to love this, dude. It’s called Pedophiles in Paradise.” You’re like, “Eh, I don’t think so. It’s not going to be a project that I’m attaching myself to.”
Women seem to really like Shock Top. Do you know why that is?
Well, you know, simple math. Everyone likes Shock Top. And some of everyone are women.
That was like Erlich-ian.
Yeah. I’ll send you a Venn diagram. But I think you can make it on your own. You’re a Made Man.
Yeah, we’ll do the Venn diagram on our end.
I would love that. I actually would love that.