When Steve-O, the most infamous member of MTV's Jackass, announced he was going to do stand-up, we worried it might be like the time Daffy Duck blew himself up to prove he had the best act ever.
Thankfully, Steve-O has shown a remarkable amount of self-control and hasn't tried many of the violent and self-deprecating antics that garnered him his fame. Instead, Steve-O's trademark daredevil attitude permeates his act with a vicious self-efficacy in the best possible way. Of course, there's the occasional clown college moment, but he's a surprisingly great stand-up comedian.
The man who once stapled his own nuts to his leg is coming to South Florida for three successive shows at the Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach Improvs, now regular stops on his comedy tours.
We reached out to the University of Miami dropout to ask about his time here, his life in sobriety, and that night we sat across a stage from him at the now-defunct downtown Miami strip club Goldrush.
Cultist: When you come back home to Miami, are there any particular "Miami" places you try to stop by?
Steve-O: I like to spend time with my friend, the legendary "Sharkman," Manny Puig, and go to a restaurant in Fort Lauderdale called Sublime.
On a somewhat personal note, I wanted to tell you how amazingly brave it was to show the home videos of yourself on MTV when you were hitting rock bottom several years ago. Your transformation to sobriety is inspirational.
Thanks for that. I consider handing that big box full of videotapes over to the producers to be one of the more reckless stunts I ever did, but I'm glad I did it.
Are you glad you'll always be associated with Jackass, or do you sometimes wish your career was known separate from it?
Being the attention whore that I am, I'm overjoyed to have people associate me with anything. I think Jackass has some sort of historical significance too. I couldn't be more grateful to have been a part of it and to have so many shocking, juicy, and hilarious stories from it to bring to comedy clubs.
I once sat on the opposite side of a stage from you in a completely empty Goldrush at like 3 a.m. on a Tuesday about ten years ago. You were with a couple of hot European girls, and I was with some friends. I guess those sort of weird Steve-O sightings are pretty much over?
I'm a single man today but working hard to become "the man that the love of my life deserves." This means I'm not only steering clear of strip clubs, I'm actually practicing complete celibacy for a period of time. I don't expect everyone to believe that, but it's true, and you have to come to see my comedy show to find out how outrageous the situation really is.
You got a pretty hard initial push-back for your stand-up. Do you feel like you're finally getting acceptance on the overly cynical comedy scene?
When I first got serious about doing stand-up, I expected to deal with a great deal of hatred in the comedy community, and I was genuinely surprised to find that the haters were few and far between. With that said, the haters were really hateful, but I've found that most people have been rooting for me to do well. I'm headlining at the Improvs in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm (all for the third time now) because it's been going very well. After every single show, I hang out and take photos with everybody who wants one -- that's my afterparty, and you're all invited!