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Christian Finnegan: Example of 'U.S. whiteness'

By Jarrett Bellini, CNN
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Comic: Age should determine voting
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Christian Finnegan stars in the TBS comedy show, "Are We There Yet?"
  • Finnegan used to keep up with pop culture as host of VH1's "Best Week Ever"
  • His passion for politics led to appearances on Keith Olbermann's show
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(CNN) -- Christian Finnegan describes his character on the TBS comedy "Are We There Yet?" as "the obnoxious wacky neighbor," but also admits he's "... probably more properly known as 'the white guy' on the show."

For better or worse, it's a role he tackles with a bit of experience. "This is not my first go-round as the representative of American whiteness."

It's true. Some people may remember him as Chad from the classic "Chappelle Show" sketch "Mad Real World." You can find it online, but be warned that it's beyond not safe for work. Really, not even for the home office if you have pets who are easily offended.

The point is: He plays the white guy. And you'll also notice that, at the time, he even played the fat guy. These days, however, Finnegan is rather svelte. In our video interview, he discusses his dramatic weight loss and why he doesn't talk about it in his act.

Other fans -- or at least casual observers of things that happen on TV -- may also remember Finnegan for his stint on VH1's "Best Week Ever" where, for a time, his personal and professional life revolved around being on top of everything related to pop culture. It's a job he's happy to call his past.

"I am so relieved to not have to give a (expletive) any more," he says. "Like the Kardashians ... that kind of came after 'Best Week Ever' and it's such a delight to not have to know anything about those idiots."

Finnegan still considers himself somewhat savvy when it comes to contemporary lifestyles and people-being-famous-for-being-famous, but his real interest is government -- a passion that eventually led to regular appearances on MSNBC's former show "Countdown with Keith Olbermann."

"I'm kind of obsessed with politics," Finnegan says. "It's really just sort of the only way a guy in his 30s can procrastinate and justify it. I will watch the same episode of "Hardball" three times and tell myself, 'I'm watching the news. I'm staying on top of things.' No, you just don't want to do any work."

These days Finnegan is doing plenty of work on stage as a stand-up comedian. In July, we sat down with him in Chicago during the Just For Laughs comedy festival, because one should never miss out on an opportunity to chat with the representative of American whiteness.

(TBS is a sister network of CNN and both are owned by Time Warner.)

 
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