Q: How do you think the comedy on “Insecure” has changed over four seasons?
A: I think in writing the show, obviously we write jokes in there but, since the inception, I never wanted to feel like it was a traditional sitcom where every line was a joke. You still want the dialogue to feel naturalistic. There’s that element. And … it is more about the situational; the situational element and the situational side of things. But I think we haven’t changed the way we approach comedy in the show over the course of four seasons.
Q: Is there more pressure now to create in this environment where you have so much support and love? Does that influence how you approach the writing?
A: We talk about that all the time and Prentice (Penny, an executive producer) and I are really clear about shutting out the outside world in the writers’ room. … But I think — initially I was like, what is all this, what is all this pressure? But then someone told me like, “No, people really view your show as realistic and they see themselves in these characters and so when they don’t see a condom present, they’re just like, “Oh, I wouldn’t do that,” and it takes you out the story. And I think that’s, for me, what alarmed me was like, oh, if it’s taking you out the story, then I don’t want that and so let’s make sure that our viewers stay engaged.
And beyond that, I think the other feedback — the instant feedback can be daunting, but it’s just like it’s part of it. That’s the culture that we’re in currently and all you can do is just continue to create and stay true to your story.
George Dickie has been a features writer for Gracenote/Tribune Media Services since 1989, when “Hee-Haw” was still on the air and George “Goober” Lindsay was his first interview. His early interviews ranged from Jim Henson and Dick Van Dyke to Phil Collins and the Dixie Chicks.