Find us @

Feature

These SoCal bros went viral for their prankish videos from city council meetings. Now they’re taking their humor to Netflix.

Chad Kroeger and JT Parr, whose real names are Tom Allen and John Parr, are just two Southern California bros trying to “spread the stoke.” If you don’t know

Published

on

Tom Allen and John Parr, as Chad Kroeger and JT Parr, are two Southern California brothers just trying to “share the stoke.”

You’re not the only one who doesn’t understand what their motto, “get excited,” actually means. Urban Dictionary defines it as being “totally and intensely thrilled… or excited about something.” It is informal language used by surfers.

And that’s just what they’ve earned a reputation for.

The pair, who frequently act out their characters when they’re on camera like comedians Nathan Fielder and Sacha Baron Cohen do, have gained popularity online for sharing videos of their efforts to get average people “stoked” about causes they care about. According to VICE, it has a “half-serious, half-farcical political agenda.”

What they refer to as “activism” may be seen by others as viral pranks. They originally gained notoriety online in 2017 after sharing a video of themselves pleading for the statue of late “Fast & Furious” franchise star Paul Walker at a San Clemente City Council meeting. In 2020, hundreds of people swarmed the streets of Huntington Beach, California, to protest California Governor Gavin Newsom’s order that beaches remain closed for the first few months of the coronavirus epidemic. This is when they became famous for trying to “fix” the mask shortage there.

With their Netflix program “Chad & JT Go Deep,” which premieres on Tuesday, they now hope to convey more of the inner workings of their humorous identities.

While speaking in character to NBC News in a Zoom interview, Chad claimed, “We didn’t expect it [our activism] to blow out like it did.” “We’re just doing what we love, and people are responding,”

Chad and JT continue to find issues they are passionate about in the Netflix series (for example, in episode one they enact a campaign to “protect our boarders,” referring to … skateboarders). Interviews with other members of their crew, which in this performance (sort of) includes the well-known DJ Zedd, are interspersed between the “activism.” However, the primary plot investigates what occurs when cancel culture takes hold.

The show is an expansion of the internet brand they have previously established. Their YouTube channel’s videos have received millions of views. Their podcast has gained a fervent following as well, with many listeners—known as “stokers”—commenting on individual episodes in a running Reddit thread.

With Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim, the comic team from “Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!” serving as producers, it’s also the newest program to conflate truth with fiction. The “The Eric Andre Show” and “Nathan For You” television programs, which are docu-reality/sketch comedies, were also produced by their production firm.

Chad stated, “Having a production team behind us to capture everything was fantastic. “It was fantastic to have a team behind you to help spread your ideas because it freed us up to just enjoy the ride. Without having to consider the logistics, which are frequently a bummer, I could concentrate on it.”

JT concurred, saying that compared to their podcast and YouTube channel, the show “captures more of a personal journey.”

He added in the Zoom chat while maintaining his character, “It lets people more into us and into our relationship.” “I believe that was sort of the idea behind this.”

Internet videos only make only a minor portion of activism, according to Chad. “With this show, we wanted to go deeper and examine our relationship with our staff as well as some of the issues we occasionally face. Like the cancellation and how we get around problems like that by using our personnel.”

Even though they occasionally run into individuals who are either perplexed by their message or incensed by it, they are unconcerned by the responses.

We have calming energies naturally, Chad added. “Mainly because I always have a crystal with me while I’m around people,”

Even if someone becomes heated, it can be difficult for them to actually square off for real if you lead with stoke, he continued. Because we’re two laid-back guys, I suppose.

While they mostly perform in Southern California for the program, the duo has found themselves in the news all around the country. They most recently advocated for the “right to bear guns” during a Des Moines City Council meeting earlier this month.

John informed local news reporters, “We felt that they meant sleeves would be mandatory. It turns out that’s not the problem, but if it ever does, we’ll battle it with everything we’ve got.

When questioned if they intended to “spread their stoke activism” efforts elsewhere, they made a suggestion that additional travels were in the works.

John responded, “That’s an affirmative 10-4 oh yeah. I don’t want to tip our future ambish too much.”

They simply hope people continue to watch the Netflix show in the meanwhile. They even requested that August 23, the day the show premieres, be declared “no City Council day” by the Los Angeles City Council.

On August 19, Chad greeted the council members with, “What up, Council,” and then asked them to “reward” themselves by viewing their new show.

We need you, dedicated public servants, to take the day off work, stay home, and watch the entire series so you can support the algorithm and prevent us from getting buried in the famed Netflix shuffle.

Watch the complete, exclusive clip of their appearance before the L.A. City Council below.