If you're a fan of improv comedy, then you should definitely know who Lauren Lapkus is. She's the host — well, actually the guest — of her own improv podcast on the Earwolf Network aptly titled With Special Guest Lauren Lapkus and now is one of the stars of Netflix's first sketch comedy series Characters.
I discovered her through the hugely popular podcast Comedy Bang Bang. On the 377th episode, titled "Good Night in the Morning," she and Paul F. Tompkins were tasked with creating a radio show host duo named Chazmin and Sunny.
The episode starts off normally enough. Chazmin and Sunny have the chemistry of Regis Philbin and Kelly Ripa; they're high-energy and wired. And then it just starts getting weird. We learn that they record their show from 5 am to 6:01 pm, after which they run a marathon. Their main demographic is the entire country of China and the District of Columbia. They sleep together in a tight vault despite not being in a romantic relationship.
As the show progresses there's a moment when they introduce a third character, their agent, named Scarsdale, who's embodied by both of their voices coming together. It was one of the most delightful and weird comedic moments of the last year, and it illustrates just how great Lapkus is at creating oddball characters and fully realized worlds for them to live in.
Lapkus has improvised more than 70 characters through live improv shows, podcasts, and now on Characters. Watch the video above to learn about her process and just how some of these delightful characters came about.