Photo courtesy College Humor

Jake and Amir and Calgary, oh my!

By Rachel Woodward, February 27 2018 —

If you spent any time on YouTube between 2007 and 2015, you probably remember Jake Hurwitz and Amir Blumenfeld as the faces of the webseries Jake and Amir, which featured the American comedians as co-workers at College Humor and the shenanigans that ensued. Amir’s character acts as a needy and obsessive Jake superfan, who, over the course of eight years, finds himself in countless strange and hilarious situations. The duo have since finished the webseries but have continued to create comedy content with their advice podcast, entitled If I Were You. Hurwitz and Blumenfeld will bring their podcast to Calgary on March 7 for a live recording of the show at MacHall.

If I Were You is a weekly advice podcast where the duo answer questions emailed to them from listeners, sometimes bringing in a guest to help them out. Their advice is mostly humorous, as they receive questions from listeners who find themselves in precarious situations. Boasting over 300 episodes, Hurwitz and Blumenfeld have received their fair share of wacky inquiries.

“We’re trying to keep it fresh with new segments now, because we don’t want every episode to feel the same. So that’s one way to keep it fresh. I don’t know if I had any expectations going into it,” Blumenfeld says.

The duo founded the podcast network Headgum in 2015, which now hosts over 40 podcasts. The network also has a YouTube channel, where Hurwitz and
Blumenfeld create video content with their co-workers that have a similar feel to the original Jake and Amir webseries. The Headgum series Offdays and Geoffrey the Dumbass — featuring Headgum intern-turned-star Geoffrey James — have been projects that allows Hurwitz and Blumenfeld to get back to their roots.

“I think it makes us happy that people like it and to know that Geoffrey came up watching Jake and Amir videos and now he’s here, writing with us in the office,” Hurwitz says. “The way we shoot Geoffrey the Dumbass and Offdays right now reminds us of how we shot Jake and Amir in the early days, which is just run and gun, shoot from the hip. By the end, we had many producers and organized shoot days and somebody to log and capture all the footage and a team that promoted and posted and did everything. Right now we are sort of back to the basics.”

Outside of Headgum and podcasting, Hurwitz and Blumenfeld created and wrote Lonely and Horny, a 10-episode webseries that follows Blumenfeld’s awkward and selfish character, Ruby Jade, as he endeavours to get laid in the age of technological dating and social media. Season two of the show has wrapped up production and the duo say they are excited for audiences to receive the new content.

“We’ve done a better job in season two of mapping it out and seeing character arcs for the characters around Ruby Jade a little bit more. This season, my character, Josh, has a little bit of a story rather than only reacting to Amir,” Hurwitz says. “When we made it, we imagined it as an extension of Jake and Amir, which is just a slightly better webseries. We shot it a little more cinematically. People almost reviewed it like they would a movie, where they wanted to see character evolution and see how somebody grows and changes — which is actually not something we had written it for — but we took that feedback and we applied it to season two. We got a little deeper than just a maniac doing crazy things.”

An episode of If I Were You will be recorded in MacHall on March 7 and will feature a surprise special guest to give advice alongside Hurwitz and Blumenfeld. Tickets are still available at machallconcerts.com and Ticketfly.

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