Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Fred Armisen and Bill Hader to make things up for IFC documentary series

Fred Armisen as Ian Rubbish, another historical person he just made up.

The worst part of every documentary is its insistence on “documenting” some sort of “reality,” in order to “edify” audiences with the “truth.” Often this truth is very dull, leaving little room for improvisational comedy, so IFC is out to rectify that with Documentary Now!, a new series from Fred Armisen, Bill Hader, and Seth Meyers. In six half-hour episodes, premiering August 20, the SNL alumni will extrapolate that show’s “Ian Rubbish And The Bizarros” into a broader investigation of similarly fake history, which has the benefit of not having to adhere to boring facts.

Instead, Documentary Now! will take an unflinching look at events that never actually happened (or mock things that did), including episodes on: an Al Capone festival in Iceland; “guerrilla” journalists tracking a drug cartel in Mexico; the making of the first-ever documentary on the Inuit; an innocent man sentenced to prison; an “indifferent ’70s rock band;” and a Grey Gardens parody about two eccentric shut-ins. Jack Black, John Slattery, and fellow SNL players Aidy Bryant, Mike O’Brien, Paula Pell, and Tim Robinson will guest star to add to the inauthenticity and make it clear you’re not supposed to be learning anything.


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