John Mulaney Can’t Fathom Hanging Out with David Letterman

John Mulaney thinks he might be dead. That’s the only way he can explain how he wound up taking David Letterman on a tour of his life.

In a new standalone special of David Letterman’s Netflix interview series My Next Guest Needs No Introduction, Letterman interviewed Mulaney before a live audience. The wide-ranging conversation covered Mulaney’s addiction and recovery, his experiences as a new father, and the moments that inspired him to be a comedian. 

Now Mulaney is revealing what it was like to be Letterman’s guest of honor. “I have this weird theory…” he said during an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! last night. “I sometimes think, ‘Did I die a couple years ago, and this is a weird, nice heaven where David Letterman wants to hang out with me?”

Mulaney has worked with Letterman before. In 2016, they both were part of the lineup at A Celebration of Service, a USO comedy show at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland. A year later, Mulaney paid tribute to Letterman at a Kennedy Center ceremony when the host received The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.

But in My Next Guest, the spotlight was firmly on Mulaney—and shooting the show involved the two comics spending three days together.

Beyond the sit-down interview, the special also followed the pair as they toured Mulaney’s old high school, answered questions from students, and sat down with his father.

Mulaney says his father, however, was markedly less impressed by the Letterman experience. “He was excited to meet someone and have dinner, but he didn’t care at all about David Letterman,” Mulaney described to Kimmel. “David Letterman to him—that’s not a big deal at all. I think he actually thought, ‘This guy’s excited to meet me.’”

In fairness, it was Letterman’s request to meet Mulaney’s dad—and they went deep in their conversation, with Mulaney’s dad sharing what it was like to watch his son struggle with addiction and enter rehab.

In fact, Mulaney implied the weight of that conversation has kept him from watching the episode yet. “I have myself not watched it yet… I just gotta wait a second, because my dad’s in it a lot,” he said.

But as heavy as the conversation got at times, it sounds like the experience was largely joyous for Mulaney. “When I was graduating from my high school, I think I actually thought to myself, ‘I’m never coming back to this place unless it’s with a camera crew following me and I’ve got David Letterman with me.’” Mulaney mused on JKL. “And [then] it actually happened. It rewarded the worst side of me.”

John Mulaney’s episode of My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman is streaming now on Netflix.

The two comics are set to meet again as part of Mulaney’s new six-episode miniseries Everybody’s in L.A., which premieres on Netflix tonight at 9:30 pm ET.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *