TBS’ hit sitcom My Boys returns for it’s nine-week fourth season on Sunday July 25th, and in preparation for the premiere, My Life, Made Possible by Pop Culture spoke with star Jamie Kaler about what to expect. “I have some crazy stuff to do this season. I get punished a lot and then I have an epiphany of life,” he started.
So of course I had to ask if that punishment includes growing another mustache. In the third season premiere, you will remember that all of the guys have ridiculous facial hair, as they are locked into some kind of sick bet. Kaler shared that though they didn’t have to grow their own, they opted to because they’re very method actors!
“Those were our real mustaches,” he laughed. “There's a funny story about that: the first week we all grew mustaches, and Mike [Bunin, Kenny] and I had been out on tour, so I didn't care. I grew out a big beard and then shaved it into a Wyatt Earp mustache. So the first week we all have the real mustaches, but in the second episode of that season, I decide to keep my mustache; I'm the only character who decides to keep it. But unfortunately they had to shoot a flashback scene the Friday after our first episode. So the first episode is a real mustache and then [in the next one] that mustache is fake. They had to bring in a mustache tech!”
But this fourth season is bound to be different. For one thing, Jim Gaffigan is no longer in the cast. The nine-episode season was shot over the spring of 2010, when Gaffigan was out on a stand-up tour. “I guess they couldn't work out the schedule or something so it's really a bummer to have Andy gone because I think he's such a funny cat,” Kaler shared. “But as far as twenty-two minute episodes, without the strength of his character, everybody else got a little bit more to do.”
My Boys, therefore, won’t be bringing in a new guy to replace Gaffigan, but they will be adding a woman who catches Kaler’s character’s eye. Comedienne in her own right Rachael Harris will come on in a multi-episode arc toward the end of the season, which Kaler enjoyed for a few reasons. “Rachael comes and is a love interest of mine and is just great. It was a really fun season; the writers were just great and gave me a lot of fun stuff to do. My character actually does have a little bit of an arc—some change. He grows up a little bit, and it was really, really fun to play.”
Though the show is full of talented actors who have roots in comedy, Kaler admitted that not a lot of adlibbing is done on-set. “We'll have a line here or there as we go, but everything works together, and the scripts are really tight.” He added that he doesn’t think the writers get as much credit as they should because everyone focuses on the chemistry of the actors, but he wants fans to know that “everything comes off as nonchalant, but it's written that way. Even by this season, we get along so well that they kind of write in our voice. I'll read something once or twice, and that will be it because it's written how we would really say [it]. We all have our lines memorized, like, in seconds because it's written in our voice.”
And just because their time on-set is pretty regimented, the cast has a ton of fun off-screen with a different competitive sport each season. “This last season we had a ping-pong table,” Kaler said after recalling the darts and foosball of seasons past.
Another way the cast can have fun is by voting for themselves in the TBS.com “Favorite PJ’s boy” poll. Such a thing came as a surprise to Kaler, who said that he will have to vote a couple of thousand times for himself. Anything to give him an edge, I guess! “[I’m] not going to beat Reid and Kyle; they're the cute ones!” He laughed.
My Boys begins airing its fourth season this upcoming Sunday, but the network has not yet made a decision on the fate of a fifth season. “We love doing [the show], and we want to come back,” Kaler assured My Life, Made Possible by Pop Culture, pointing out that TBS is probably waiting on the ratings of the new season. So be sure to tune in this Sunday and every one after that for the next two months to give it the best chance of renewal.
And if you need to play catch up, TBS will be running a marathon of season three on Saturday to prepare for the new season! Tune in and check it out!