Jono and Ben writer admits worldwide attention for spoof is 'ridiculous'
It was the first day on the job for comedian Cori Gonzalez-Macuer when he came up with the Jono and Ben skit which has gone worldwide.
The What We Do In the Shadows star's take on the infamous BBC interview with Professor Robert Kelly (which was gatecrashed by his two children) featured actor Renee Lyons handling an interview while cleaning a toilet, cooking dinner and defusing a bomb.
The skit has been picked up by websites across the globe - from Perez Hilton and People to The Guardian, Sydney Morning Herald, Huffington Post and Forbes - and the clip itself has now been viewed more than 36 million times on Facebook.
Gonzalez-Macuer came up with the basic idea at a Jono And Ben writers' meeting last Monday.
The original BBC interview "was obviously one of the hot topics of the weekend, so we all came in with a few ideas for it", he says.
"But it wasn't one of the ones that I had at the meeting - I think I literally came up with it as we were about to leave. I just kind of blurted it out, like, 'What if we just switched the roles and it was a woman trying to do like, just a lot of bizarre stuff - while still being an expert about South Korea?'"
Gonzalez-Macuer, Stuff and Sunday Star-Times columnist Alice Snedden and the show's host, Jono Pryor, worked together on the skit, which aired last Thursday.
Boom! Instant internet hit. Asked why he thinks it became such a sensation, Gonzalez-Macuer says the Jono And Ben team ran with the idea "just because it was funny" - but he suspects the real key to the sketch's popularity is the fact that it seems to have upset just about as many people as it's amused.
"It was never intended to offend anyone, but it's obviously offended some people and it's become quite polarising," he says. "I think that probably gets more views than something that's just liked, you know?"
"People want to get angry on the internet, and this is a good example of that."