There’s always been something unlikely about Aziz Ansari’s rise.Or as his mentor, Chris Rock, puts it, “There’s no easy path to stand-up, but an Indian kid from South Carolina? He had to be funny.” For starters, he grew up among white kids in Bennettsville, a town of 9,000, where his family moved because there was a job opportunity for his dad.
“I try not to keep my phone on me because I need to keep all distractions out of my face when I’m trying to do all of this shit,” he says. Not only is he directing this episode but he’s also in almost all of it, as ’s hopeless-romantic hero, Dev Shah, who’s essentially Ansari, just less successful: a fledgling New York actor, living off a Go-Gurt commercial he once did, looking for love and some tasty tortellini.He witnessed racism, like seeing patients request a doctor other than his dad, but it didn’t dominate his existence.His big dream wasn’t getting into comedy; it was leaving South Carolina. “I remember hearing about this guy from my hometown that lived in New York, and I was like, ‘Wow! ’ That was enough.” He ended up at NYU, majoring in business with a minor in journalism. “Graduated with honors while coasting.” He’d also graduated from cracking up his NYU dorm-mates to an obsession with stand-up comedy and later a cult following via the sketch-comedy show he co-created with Rob Huebel, Paul Scheer, and Jason Woliner that ran on MTV for two seasons, starting in 2007.So he makes a point of handing it off to his assistant, Jessica, whose main job seems to be to keep Ansari’s phone charged and to run across this Brooklyn soundstage and fetch it whenever he wants it, which turns out to be always, and then to remind him that she’s already given it to him, which also is pretty often, and then to take it away again. ” Ansari asks for the second time in the first ten minutes of our acquaintance. This season, Dev falls for an unavailable woman, and Ansari wrote so much good stuff that he asked Netflix to make the penultimate episode a two-parter. ” There’s a text waiting for him: “ ‘We’re ready to start shooting ASAP.’ Jesus! Ansari spent seven seasons knocking out jokes as the ridiculous striver Tom Haverford on NBC’s and two years ago joined the ranks of stand-ups who’ve sold out Madison Square Garden.
“If you work really hard on something and the only person that’s upset with it is Chris Brown, you did a fantastic job.