Emo Philips on Voice Acting, Businesses He Visits in Minnesota


Emo Philips is a comedy legend. For a generation, he's been entertaining audiences and influencing other comics with his blend of misdirection and odd-but-clever punchlines. Philips, how is a bit shy about doing interviews, was kind enough to answer some questions via what he likes to call the "internet machine."

What's on your bucket list showbiz wise?

I have hundreds of scraps of paper all around the house with jokes on them, so I would like to record either a CD. Or an audio book, if no one shows up for the CD taping.

What's on your bucket list otherwise?

An inner voice has long been telling me that I should play the sax. But I know the world would infinitely prefer that I write more jokes. Perhaps I could get the government to pay me not to play, the way it sometimes pays farmers not to plant crops. Now that I think of it, that could be a sweet little revenue stream.

You've been doing a lot of voice-over work. Is that the dream gig others say it is?

It is! Currently I'm on Adventure Time. I do the voice of [Cuber], a strange creature.

Is there a "classic" Emo joke that still appears in the act fairly often?

Not really, but sometimes I'll take requests in case someone wants to hear an old favorite... or make sure he's seeing the right comedian.

Not sure if you're a sports fan, but did you get caught up in March Madness?

I'm into April Madness, which is when you hit the garage sales of gamblers who lost their shirts during March Madness.

You mentioned on the past that you have an aversion to driving. Do you think you'll get one of these driver-free cars when they become available?

Actually, my aversion is not to driving, which I love, but to other drivers. I will therefore reach ultimate bliss when I'm the only one on the road without a driver-less car. My bliss will be short-lived though, because then the driver-less cars will sync up with each other and go hundreds of miles per hour, and it'll be like playing chess against a computer: I won't survive a minute.

What do you do in your spare time these days?

I like to hike. That's why, every time I'm in Minneapolis, I visit Midwest Mountaineering. That, plus I can't resist a good oxymoron. I'm not made of stone.

What else are you working on?

I will be voicing the part of Conan in writer Rob Kutner's audio book, The Future According Me. Also, thanks to guest-editor Weird Al graciously inviting several of his comedian friends to contribute, I have a piece in the next issue of Mad Magazine. If only I could get word to my eight-year-old Mad-mag self that someday I would be writing for it...


Emo Philips Acme Comedy Co. 708 N. First St., Minneapolis 8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday; 10:30 Friday and Saturday $15; $18 Friday and Saturday For tickets, call 612-338-6393 or visit