Comedian Rob Corddry Says Working at The Daily Show Sucked the Fun Out of News

But he still enjoys a good Twitter joke every now and then

Specs

Age 44

Claim to fame Creator and star of the Emmy-winning Adult Swim series Childrens Hospital (Fridays at midnight); star of the upcoming HBO show Ballers (premieres June 21 at 10 p.m.)

Base Los Angeles

Twitter @robcorddry

What kind of TV do you watch?

To be honest with you, I don't consume a lot. I haven't watched live news in eight years, ever since The Daily Show. I will read Digg on the toilet while I'm doing my morning constitutional. I'll flip through The New York Times over breakfast. Mostly I just let headlines wash over me. People think they're consuming information, but I really think it's mostly just mind-numbing.

Did working at The Daily Show [as a correspondent from 2002 to 2006] just suck all the enjoyment out of the news?

It absolutely does. Your job is not to make fun of the news so much as it is to make fun of the ways in which the news is delivered. And 24-hour news stations in general created an epidemic where news is created, rather than reported. Deflate-gate, or whatever they were calling it, was non-news that overpowered anything even remotely important. Bias aside, it became more disgusting the longer it was around. That's just pervasive.

How specifically do you think that constant grind hurts the news?

As far as I know, good, proper analysis of an event cannot happen within minutes. Breaking news is not what they think it means.

Twitter has become a popular place for both newsgathering and for comedians to try to workshop jokes. Is that appealing to you?

I started out pretty early on Twitter, and I ended up with a little over a million and a half followers. My attitude toward tech and social media in general has evolved a little bit. I've not quite abandoned it, but I think I don't use it anymore to the degree that it is fun to me, which would basically just be using it as cowardly stand-up.

It seems like its own skill set, in a lot of ways, cueing up jokes and carefully writing one-liners and then sending them out. Some guys like Rob Delaney are just incredible at it.

Rob's book [Rob Delaney: Mother. Wife. Sister. Human. Warrior. Falcon. Yardstick. Turban. Cabbage.] was excellent largely because of that. Rob is a perfect example of somebody who uses [Twitter] right. I don't workshop jokes so much as crap them out. It's hit or miss, but it doesn't matter to me. I can fail pretty comfortably on Twitter.

What are you reading right now?

I find myself drawn to New Agey stuff. It's not self-help—that can be really silly. It's something potentially embarrassing, but I guess it's not, really—I'm really into meditation and books about practicing being aware more. I'm reading this great book right now by Rob Bell called What We Talk About When We Talk About God. He went through a big crisis of faith and came back with, still, a Christian faith. And he's a nonliteralist and I love nonliteral Christians. They're all talking about the same things as the Buddhists. Guys like that are branded heretics, and that's what happens. It happened to Jesus! I'm not comparing [Rob] to Jesus. I'm sure he'd flinch at that. But anybody who speaks their truth in a really accessible way is going to get a lot of crap.