You’ve seen him put on funky glasses and fake teeth in order to make the world safe. You’ve seen him wear a trucker hat and rock out to groovy tunes. You’ve heard him talk about being an ogre opposite Cameron Diaz. And now, you might soon see Mike Myers doing some wild and crazy shit all over HBO, as the actor has entered into an overall deal with the premium cable network. Whatever will become of the TV landscape?
The deal between Myers and HBO is set for two years, and is exclusively within the TV realm. It marks Myers first major TV presence since leaving the Saturday Night Live cast in 1995, and it’s almost impossible to guess where his influences will be felt the most. This is a development deal, which obviously doesn’t necessarily mean Myers will be involved in a performing sense. But I find it hard to imagine him only incubating others’ projects rather than diving into it with both feet.
On the one hand, he’s a creator who revels in character-based stuff. From sketch-born Wayne Campbell to Austin Powers to…that Love Guru thing…Myers has been largely successful, especially at the box office, at focusing on singular characters more than crazy inventive plots. And though it would be reductive to say HBO comedies don’t have great plotlines – and irresponsibly incorrect in the case of something like Curb Your Enthusiasm – they’re all built around standout personalities. Perhaps Myers will develop something more fragmented and off-center like Tracey Takes On or with a more heightened reality like The Comeback.
But on the other hand, the last thing that Mike Myers got involved with – other than returning to SNL as Dr. Evil for a bit about North Korea – was last year’s Supermensch, which he co-directed with Beth Aala. A documentary about talent manager Shep Gordon, this showed off a less-scatalogical side of Myers’ personality that didn’t get serious so much as heart-sleeved. So maybe he’ll get into something more in tune with HBO’s comedies that don’t rely as much on silliness. I keep saying comedies, because the old crystal ball isn’t showing me Myers as the guy who creates the next version of The Wire. Although…
Of course, it’s entirely possible that Myers will be a tornado of creativity, putting together projects in every genre imaginable. Let’s try and read into his words from the press release to see if we can get an inkling of what he’d like to work on.
I’m thrilled to be at HBO.”
Nope, not gonna squeeze anything out of that. Get randy with HBO and Mike Myers in 2015-2016, wontcha?