Nineties alt-comedy troupe the State will release a new oral history, The Union of the State, detailing their rise, dissolution, reunion and staggering dispersion and influence throughout the comedy world.
The book arrives May 3rd and features interviews with all 11 members of the State: Todd Holoubek, David Wain, Michael Ian Black, Michael Showalter, Ken Marino, Robert Ben Garant, Thomas Lennon, Joe Lo Truglio, Kevin Allison, Kerri Kenney-Silver and Michael Patrick Jann.
The State formed in 1988 at New York University, where its members were all undergrads at the time. In 1993, the group scored a deal with MTV, which aired 26 episodes of a self-titled sketch comedy show. Despite the short run, which ended in 1995, The State produced a slew of seminal bits like Porcupine Racetrack, Monkey Torture, The Jew, the Italian, and the Redhead Gay and Louie and the Last Supper.
After The State, the cast embarked on an array of different projects, but regularly worked together. Wain and Showalter’s 2001 cult classic Wet Hot American Summer featured several original cast members (as well as a slew of future comic greats), while Lennon, Garant and Kenney-Silver created and starred in Reno 911!
In 2007, most of the group reunited for the Wain and Marino-penned The Ten, which comprised vignettes about the 10 commandments. Other State-related projects include: Childrens Hospital, Stella, Party Down, Role Models and the Night at the Museum franchise.
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In 2014, the State reunited at Tenacious D’s second annual Festival Supreme for a 45-minute live set. “We don’t get to be the State very often,” Black said during the show, “so it’s great when we get a chance to come together and do the thing that we do best — which is collect money for sketches that we wrote 25 years ago.”