Sammy J Has A "Shocking Realisation"

21 March 2016 | 4:34 pm | Steve Bell

"...suddenly you wake up at 32 years-of-age and you're part of a man-puppet musical comedy duo, and you can't change that."

While comedian Sammy J is definitely human and his purple felt mate Randy is defiantly not human, the pair's become as thick as thieves. Having survived a harrowing stint as housemates during last year's acclaimed ABC TV show Sammy J & Randy In Ricketts Lane, for their new stage show Sammy J & Randy Land they're taking the natural next step and opening a theme park. Because why wouldn't they?  

"It's sort of a slight piss-take really, because in the first few minutes of the show we decide to open a theme park off the back of our TV show — we sort of get too big for our boots,' Sammy J explains. "Writing narrative shows is what we started doing at the festivals years ago and it's where we got our audience, but for the last few years because the TV thing's been the focus, we haven't really been doing any of those sort of shows.

"So it's sort of a return to the beginning for us, and I think it's what we do best — a huge storyline with lots of props and costumes and stuff. And I think we also wrote a script that was a reaction to having been through the TV experience, because it took us five years [from inception] to make the TV show ultimately — every script gets sent to lawyers and checked by executives and there are so many levels to it, whereas this is literally us in front of our audience saying whatever we want, and we're enjoying that a lot. It's funny, the first show that Randy and I did together was called Ricketts Lane in Melbourne and it was literally a sitcom pitch. We invited all the networks along and it worked! So that was like the five-year plan, and now we're back to our roots."

Sammy J had always dreamed of a career in comedy, he just never envisaged the form that it would eventually take. "Back at school I was really into comedy, and it was only a year after [I finished] school that I started comedy, so it was more of a short-term goal back then," he smiles. "And suddenly you wake up at 32 years-of-age and you're part of a man-puppet musical comedy duo, and you can't change that. It's a shocking realisation that that's what your life's become."

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And even this pairing that's won them so much acclaim came around via complete fluke. "We feel very lucky because it was just a comedy night in Melbourne about ten years ago and we were both on the bill doing our solo stuff and we just liked each other's stuff and started mucking around together," Sammy marvels. "I've still got the poster at home: 'Featuring Randy The Puppet and Sammy J'. We both have a dream where we never have to have some major falling out or break up the duo, so we keep doing our own stuff along the way and that keeps it fresh and means we don't start hating each other."