Sugar mama

Amy Sedaris sweet-talks TONY about Comedy Central's Strangers with Candy

By Christine Champagne

You're not supposed to accept candy from strangers, but we'd gladly take a Tootsie Roll from any of the weirdos on Comedy Central's odd new series, Strangers with Candy. The show casts 38-year-old Second City alum Amy Sedaris (the younger sister of David Sedaris, author of Naked) as Jerri Blank—a 46-year-old former prostitute and drug addict who moves back home with her parents and attends high school as a freshman. School's almost out for the summer, so Time Out New York
decided to give Sedaris a pop quiz.

Time Out New York: Your bio says that you're a career waitress who does a little acting on the side. In fact, you're still waitressing at Marion's (Bowery at 4th St) even though you're on a TV show. Why don't you give it up?

Amy Sedaris: I love waiting on tables. I love hearing what people want to eat and how they order it, and I love making money. Even when I was on [the Comedy Central sketch series] Exit 57, I worked at the coffee bar at Gourmet Garage.

TONY: You also make and sell homemade cheese balls and cupcakes. Where are they sold?

AS: The Original Espresso Bar on Bleecker between Christopher and Seventh.

TONY: What's the secret to your cheese balls?

AS: A.1. sauce for a smoky cheese ball. It's great!

TONY: I love Jerri's wardrobe, especially her fringed jeans. In one episode, she says she gets her clothes at the Comfort Zone. Does the place really exist?

AS: I get this magazine called In Motion. It's for people who are missing limbs. There's this sheath that goes over a stump, and it's called the Comfort Zone. That's how I got the name for that.

TONY: If Strangers with Candy is successful, Comedy Central may license show-related products. What do you see Jerri marketing?

AS: I would like to endorse Pooh-More disposal diapers or Puff-More cigarettes or blunt rollers.

TONY: Jerri hits on the girls at school. Is she a lesbian?

AS: She's bisexual. I did an episode in which I fall in love with a guy. He turns out to be my son. Of course, I still want to have sex with him.

TONY: You and your famous author brother, David, have worked together before—on the 1997 play The Little Frieda Mysteries. Did he help out with Strangers?

AS: No. But he really likes it, and that means a lot to me.

TONY: Will you two team up on another project?

AS: He is in France now, working on his next book, but we're going to do a new play in a year.

TONY: Even though it
sounds as if you have plenty to fall back on if Strangers doesn't get picked up for a second season, you must be

a little worried. Any word from Comedy Central on the fate
of the show?

AS: No. We've all just focused on making these ten episodes, and we really haven't thought beyond that.

TONY: If the show catches on, do you worry that you'll be forever typecast as a 46-year-old user, boozer and loser?

AS: [Laughs] Uh-oh. That's a possibility, isn't it? I never thought about it until you said it.

Strangers with Candy airs every Wednesday at 10:30pm on Comedy Central. The network will also rebroadcast the premiere episode Friday 7 at 11pm.