Hi, we're Ally Beardsley and Grant O'Brien - CollegeHumor cast members and the stars/creators of Total Forgiveness, a new show about student loan debt. Ask us anything!
Hello reddit, we're Ally Beardsley and Grant O'Brien, and we're two cast members / writers for CollegeHumor and our new streaming service, Dropout.tv. We made a show together about drowning in student loan debt (Grant had about $90k in student loan debt, Ally had about $60k) and convincing our bosses to help us pay off a big chunk of that by giving each other ridiculous challenges and filming the whole thing. The first episode is up for free on the CollegeHumor Youtube channel (check it out here). It takes a lot of turns, and yes, was completely real and unscripted (and an emotional / physical nightmare!). Kinda continuing the CollegeHumor tradition of pranks, except with a lot more dark painful effects of late stage capitalism and being consumed by debt. New episodes are coming out every week on Wednesdays for the next couple months (you can get a free trial for Dropout here).
So if you've got questions about comedy, being broke, or testing the limits of friendship through elaborate filmed stunts that your financial future depends upon, go nuts. We'll be answering questions starting at 4 PM EST/1 PM PST but feel free to start piling them up!
2:47pst- We've got to go, guys. This was fun! Thanks for all the questions! Sorry we couldn't get to all of them. Check out the show on dropout.tv!
Grant: 1) Entirely too much 2) I'm using my appearances on Tales From The Closet to get laid. It's...it's why I do everything. I need people to know what they're in for
hi both, love you love the show, quick question, this sam guy. great boss or greatest boss?
I caught Sam stealing 20 dollars out of my wallet one time
Ok, I need to know everything about the Daddy's day sketch. Who's idea was it? How did filming go? How did you guys manage to keep straight faces? Did you actual fathers see it? I need to know
AB: Trapp wrote Daddy's Day, then Trapp conveniently left on vacation leaving us to read the INSANE, GRAPHIC words he penned from his shitty little bitch mind. It was chaos on set, I maybe took 10+ takes to get my first line out. They are easier now because we know how weird those shoot days are going to be. Tbh Grant was in his element.
What's it like being a sex symbol, Grant?
Grant: A sex symbol? Me? Wow. What do you think is the sexiest thing about me?
those huge lips of course! and the elusive height is a factor too
And don’t forget that megawatt smile!
I would never!
Grant: That's great. What else? Lots more?
Hi Ally i’m also a non-binary lesbian so thank u for the representation first of all. I love u. Second of all, what other hair colors are u thinking of trying after the green?
AB: heya! I am actually thinking of cutting off all the dyed hair into a bowl cut (✿◕‿◕)
How tall is grant?
Ally, do you still have green hair IRL from the show? That's awesome.
Grant, how does it feel that one of your challenges just made Ally even cooler on a permanent basis?
AB: Yeah! Well, it's kind of a faded aqua blue and now middle aged women stop me on the street to tell me I'm "pretty" lol
First of all, love you both. Easily two of my favorite cast members of all time, and the current roster on CH is on equal footing with the best stuff in the entire run.
I have 2 questions:
1) How did you decide the risk of this competition and the prize was worth the potential strain on your relationship with each other as friends and coworkers?
2) Do you feel the degrees you got this debt for have helped you in your current work, or are they things you got before transitioning into comedy full time (asked as a man who dropped out of college and pursued a different line of work from what I studied).
Thanks for doing this and making me laugh nonstop! You'll never know how much I need it sometimes thanks to the old PTSD.
AB: wow high praise and great questions. 1) I wasn't too afraid of our relationship going in, Grant and I have always been drawn to each other and we have a solid amount of things in common- we actually met before this job in a UCB class!
1) How much of a clutz idiot is Grant? 2) What’s your favourite CH video?
AB: Grant is actually extremely clumsy, just last night I watched him spilled red wine all over a chair while clapping. I fucking loooove "My Name's Not Ralph" because it's also how I feel about my pronouns.
Grant: I'm a trained ballet dancer, that's all for show. Is that vid of the cat saying oh long johnson CH?
how has working on a non-scripted snow like Total Forgiveness differ from working on scripted sketch comedy?
The thing about writing sketch is that it's SO short. Anything more than 5 pages is way too long. A lot of our writing process is riffing with each other, so doing an unscripted series is pretty natural. The biggest difference is honestly getting more time to tell the story with long-form shows like Total Forgiveness
Are the other CH guys jealous of you guys (potentially) getting your loans paid off?? I mean you're basically getting like a multi-thousand dollar bonus!
Literally yesterday Brennan was asking about doing a Side Quest for his loans
Seems like Grant got off easy with the camping challenge. Are we really supposed to believe that nothing happened during the night that freaked him out? Or can you just not show the footage because he was distracting himself by watching pornos all night?
AB: yah I agree that challenge was a little too easy... just wait
Grant: I didn't need the pornos ;)
Hi Grant and Ally! Do you guys have any advice for me as a person who wants to continue college but would need to take out loans to do so? I don’t want to be in debt because I’ve seen my parents go through it and it is terrible.
Hard as it is to believe, I actually don't regret doing what I had to to get the education I got. Lots of the the good things in my life are connected to it. That said, there would probably be good things in my life regardless of where I was, so look around at your options (taking a year off to work, transferring to a cheaper school, etc), but if you do need loans know that, while it sucks, it's not impossible.
Is drowning in student loan debt as fun as drowning in water?
I've heard drowning in water isn't as bad as people say...
Are you aware of your international audience? Or alternatively, how much of your audience is from outside the United States? German University student here, I've been watching your content religiously for years. You guys are great! <3
Grant: Thanks! I'm not sure about the numbers, but I met a guy from Russia not too long ago who learned English by watching CollegeHumor (and I assume other things, but still. Cool.)
Ally: When I lived abroad I met people who liked CollegeHumor, so I'm very aware!
Can you give Brennen my love? It's like important and such
I just told him. He loves you as well, and he says he's the number one Total Forgiveness stan
What is your average day like?
AB: work days involve a lot of coffee and rushing to meetings and trying not to waste time with video games. off days i try to be out in nature and around friends/animals. i take a lot of cbd (ᵕ̣̣̣̣̣ ہ ᵕ̣̣̣̣̣̣ ✿)
How long have you wanted to do this?
An AMA? Since my movie Rampart was released into theaters
Would you rather fight 1 elephant sized duck, or 100 duck sized elephants? only condition: barehanded
Grant: the only right answer is 100 duck sized elephants
AB: both of these scenarios sound C.U.T.E. A.F.
Lots of comedy recently has become very socially driven eg Patriot Act. Is this something that’s a particular passion of the both of yours? Have you got anything else that you’d like to tackle?
Grant, why do you have such nice teeth?
Grant: I think comedy is moving that direction because people are so much more engaged politically now. Comedy will (and should!) reflect the "national conversation" (I'm making the jerk off motion when I say "national conversation" jsyk)
My teeth are nice because of the YEARS of orthodontics I had when I was a kid and honestly they're crumbling in front of my very eyes now, so enjoy them while they last
Hey guys! I got a dropout subscription day one and it’s totally been worth it. Since then I’ve been trying my hand at writing sketches and it’s been going ok. So my question for you is: Who can eat more peeps Raphael or Brennan?
AB: I LOVE PEEPS
Grant: Thanks! I'm not sure, but I'll say that I wouldn't eat a Peep if you paid every dime of my student loans. Gross.
Hey! Just got a reddit account for the soul purpose of being involved in this discussion. I don’t know what to ask you... I just wanted to be included. Oh! (That was a 2 minute pause) Is this game tearing you apart psychologically?
What does your shirt say Grant? Ohio against what? Also are you from Ohio?
Grant: It says Ohio Against The World. I AM from Ohio. I grew up in Columbus. Are you from Ohio Buttlicker?
I am! I live and grew up near Kent and Akron. It's really cool to know that you came from the same state as me. Makes me feel like maybe one day if I work really hard, then I too may lick dudes butts as you do. Or at least stick something in em. Idk if you eat ass but you do you
^ You guys, I think this is LeBron James...
Why won't you stop talking about whipped cream cheese?
Grant: Whipped Cream Cheese it trash and NOBODY REALIZES IT! It's not dense enough so you have to put so much of it on your bagel and it melts right off!
Ally, for the love of God, are you really $60k in debt for a degree in philosophy? In a world we live in that's insane. And kinda badass in the nerdiest way possible.
AB: It has kept me humble and bookish, who needs money? shoplifts cheese
The LGBT representation and terrific humor that you two contributed to the site warmed my closeted eighth grade heart, and I can’t thank you enough for that. How do you feel about Naked Lunch?
AB: wow thank you! the beat poets are tight, but I think they got too rich/famous and ran out of things to say
Hey y'all! Big fan of CH. Just a quick question, what was your go to fast food meal when y'all were broke and in college?
Grant: There was one Arby's in Manhattan that was in the basement food court of a mall. I'd go crazy on a Beef N Cheddar
Ally: Chipotle Chips and Guac, then add a side of beans, sour cream, and salsa. Pour them into the bad, you've got a big plate of nachos for four dollars! Or maybe five...
Hi guys, you're both awesome btw. Question for Grant, What was the reaction from Jay Fleischman (The finance expert) when you asked him to do an serious interview about student loans with a man covered in leeches?
Grant: Jay rules! I actually didn't ask him myself. Our producer Shane Crown did. He was honestly surprisingly unfazed. I love that dude
First off, love you guys. I’ve had many hysterical crying fits due to some of your sketches. Second, what’s the best prank that’s happened at the office that fans don’t know about?
AB: We wrote out all the lines from Daddy's Day and hung them above Raph's desk
Hi! This is more directed towards Grant.
Have you seen this yet?
Grant: Yes! People KEEP sending it to me! A bee with jaws. Christ.
Ally: how long did you live in the Netherlands? Whereabouts were you?
AB: Ik gewoond in nederland drie jaren in de Oost! I actually lived allll over Amsterdam, because I moved like every 6 months. Fucking gorgeous city (albeit very small)
What is the very best cheese?
Grant: Blue cheese!!!
Ally: MFin Dutch Reypenaer
Ally why are you my favorite person? Why do you rock my socks so hard? D:
Besides Total Forgiveness, what is your favorite Dropout show?
AB: DIMENSION 20!!!!!!!!! Also Um, Actually
Grant: The weed show that's not out yet!
What are your degrees in, and where did you go to college? Are you happy with what you majored in?
AB: my degree is in Philosophy!
P.S. Grant, are you ever jealous that Ally owes less money than you?
Grant: I'm jealous of everyone that owes less money than me
Hi! I’m a huge fan of College Humor and I have been for years, but unfortunately I also suffer from student debt. Sooooooooooo... Where can I pirate Total Forgiveness??
Do people not know how to BitTorrent anymore? smdh
Hey grant and ally! I love your content! O was just wondering what a normal day at college humor is like? It seemed like a really fun work environment
Who’s you fav original cast member from the early CollegeHumour days?
So um... Quick question... If you found a large wooden horse infront of your front door, would you let it in?
Of course! It's rude to turn down a gift
Can you tell me how to get rid of my god damn 80k student loan debt in non organic kind of ways? Also, IDK how many worked for College Humor, but I talked to Adam Conover once on here, so I am trying to beef up my CH resume. Thanks! Byeeeeeeeee
Go on a game show??
Hey guys, love you, love your work, Grant is a sexual icon, etcetera. 3 questions: 1. Are IRL pitch meetings anything like those found in sketches? 2. Similarly, how long is it from the conception of an idea to a published video? 3. Okay, Grant: Lots of people are afraid of bees, perfectly reasonable fear. But (by any chance) are you allergic (if not, do you like honey?) or did you have a harrowing experience as a child or something?
Wait, did a beehive fall on your head?
Grant: Thank you, yes, I am. 1. The pitch meetings aren't like the sketches because we honestly do pitch things. That's not even the room we use IRL. Our room has windows and couches 2. It really depends! The writing process takes about a week, but the production and post-production can vary a lot based on what the sketch calls for. Anywhere from a month to three months, I'd say. 3. I'm not allergic, but it's STILL REASONABLE!
Favorite pizza toppings?
Grant: Pineapple. Don't @ me
Glad to hear that both of you are still alive. Grant what was your first reaction to people thinking you and Keith formerly from Buzzfeed are the same person? Has anyone ever confused you outside of the meme?
I get confused for him ALL THE TIME! I got sent at free drink in a bar because someone thought I was him. I was just at Eugene from the Try Guy's birthday party and Keith and I were talking about it. It's a thing.
Do you two like Pokémon? Which one is your favourite? Grant would probably like Machamp.
AB: jigglypuff +ﾟ*｡:ﾟ+凸
If you weren’t working at college humor, what would you be doing?
AB: very stoned selling rich women $6 skinny lattes and a cheese danish
huge CH fan!! what would you say is each of yours’ (is that grammar right? idk) writing style? ex: grant’s - usually horny
Grant: It's not just my writing style
Do either of you have an interesting coming out story that you’re willing to tell us?
Grant: The first time I came out to anyone was freshman year of college. My friend, who was very dramatic, was throwing up and screaming at the world. We were making sure she was okay, and she said "You men! All you want to do is fuck us!" I said back "That's not ALL I want to do. I'm bisexual" thinking people would take it as a joke. They paused and said "Wait, really?" and I, very quietly, said "yeah."
Ah this is great, love you guys. Of all time, what's been your favourite sketch to write / work on?
AB: My fav sketch to write was Gay At A Sleepover and fav to be in was Got No Sleep
Grant: I really had a good time with Give It A Whirl fuckers
Trapp is eavesdropping and answered that he had a great time on the theme week for the sCHining
Grant: Hot sauce
Ally: Pesto mayo
I have two questions:
1) How much of a typical work day is spent making fun of Grant at the CH office? 2) In future appearances of Tales From the Closet will Grant find new and creative ways to tell us he likes giving blowjobs or will he be sticking to tried and true methods?
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