The Brilliance!


#INTERNET Ah, we're back! Like we said, we were just "chilling out" for like 3 years. Feels good to have the team back writing. Still us three: Chuck, Benjamin, and Virgil. Got new interviews coming up, and hopefully we'll be posting on a regular basis, who knows. We also interviewed each other, check: CHUCK, BENJAMIN, VIRGIL...

Interview! > Jake and Amir!

Jake and Amir are...really hilarious. And what they do is a bit hard to describe. I guess you could say do 'comedy shorts' on the web - but it's really a bit more than that. Their videos are hilarious, awkward, weird, super witty, then awkward again, and really addictive. We setup a group chat with all of us in a room to discuss their videos, their friendship, getting slapped really hard, real sun-burn, and why TV doesn't really matter that much anymore. This interview is a wild one. If you're not already familiar with Jake and Amir, we highly, highly recommend you check out before you read this interview. Actually, we just highly recommend you check it anyway.

(We used 37signals’ Campfire product to conduct the chat…in real time.)

AMIR! > has entered the room
JAKE! > has entered the room

BENJAMIN! > Hello Amir.

BENJAMIN! > Hey Jake
VIRGIL! > Jake Amir, whats good?
AMIR! > Jake.
AMIR! > Can we leave now?
JAKE! > Let them ask us questions first.
AMIR! > Bout what, brotha
VIRGIL! > hahah
JAKE! > The website.

BENJAMIN! > ha…. Alright guys, thanks for doing this. I’ll be moderating.

JAKE! > Cool! Hey everyone

BENJAMIN! > first quetion. are you guys going to be in character…or?

AMIR! > What characters?
JAKE! > Amir. Relax.
JAKE! > I think we’ll be in and out of character… Is that ok?
BENJAMIN! > ha. perfect. I’ll be starting each one with question with “QUESTION” then we can do whatever. here we go:

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: We always start off interviews like this, but honestly, I’m actually really excited to ask you guys this one: What did you guys have for breakfast?

AMIR! > French Fries, NEXTO
JAKE! > God.
JAKE! > I had a bagel.
CHUCK! > french fries from where?
JAKE! > Don’t answer that. Next question.
AMIR! > The D’s. Both Mc and Wen!
JAKE! > He’s not even kidding.
VIRGIL! > Nice mix and match
AMIR! > Thank you. And ketchup from B-King. See Jake, not everybody thinks its gross.

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: Tell us about…and why you do it. Then tell us about about Jake and Amir.

JAKE! > About JakeandAmir…
JAKE! > We work next to each other all day, and one day I got a camera.
JAKE! > We started making stupid videos, and when we realized how many we had, we decided to put them someplace.
VIRGIL! > genius
AMIR! > was my idea. Jake forgot to mention that.
VIRGIL! > so yall met on the job?
JAKE! > Yup. I’ve been working at CH for about a year and a half

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: How long have you known each other?

AMIR! > All my life.
JAKE! > We met a year and a half ago, Amir had been working here for about a year before me.
AMIR! > Seems like all my life though. Jake, how long does it SEEM to you?
JAKE! > I guess forever.
AMIR! > See.
AMIR! > Soulmates, or whateva.
BENJAMIN! > haha
JAKE! > Not. that.
BENJAMIN! > perfect.
CHUCK! > that’s a beautiful thing
JAKE! > It’s not.

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: How did the first skit or piece come about? Was it kind of awkward at all? Like ‘acting’ with your friend?

JAKE! > I think one of our first real “skits” was Trust Fall, it wasn’t awkward or anything. But I think it’s weird how little we cared about editing them and stuff like that
JAKE! > Trust Fall ends with us just cracking up.
BENJAMIN! > I loved that one.
CHUCK! > Isn’t it shocking that?
BENJAMIN! > Reminded me of corny like…summer camp stuff.
JAKE! > Hahaha

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: Do you prefer to call them pieces or skits? Maybe shorts?

CHUCK! > Or slacks?
AMIR! > We prefer to call them… brb.
JAKE! > Don’t leave.
JAKE! > We call them videos.
BENJAMIN! > That’s soooo internet. ha.
CHUCK! > videos. i like that.
JAKE! > Haha, exactly.

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: The slapping. It’s kind of amazing - extremely funny and always well placed. Tell us about the slap-scenes.

AMIR! > QUESTION: Can you call them QQ’s. That’s sort of OUR thing. Right Jake?
JAKE! > WE don’t have a “thing”
AMIR! > lol
JAKE! > They can call their questions whatever they want.
JAKE! > Not kidding.
JAKE! > Slapping…
JAKE! > My face has become numb to it
CHUCK! > you should put vaseline on your face before-hand. it’ll suppress the pain a bit and he can do it even harder then
AMIR! > I hit him, quite literally, as hard as I can. I don’t even pull it back a little.
BENJAMIN! > Seriously man…you get rocked pretty hard in the brownies one.
JAKE! > We’re at the point where we will just slap each other across the face for no reason, even when the cameras aren’t rolling.
AMIR! > QUESTION: Can any of you guys play ping pong the way Asians do?
VIRGIL! > yeah i am a fan of the stunts!
JAKE! > It’s usually me saying that a slap needs to be harder.
BENJAMIN! > As jake would say: “no, and thats racist”
JAKE! > QUESTION: Can you edit this interview not to make him look racist?
BENJAMIN! > I’m actually pretty good at ping pong
BENJAMIN! > I once jumped on top of the table to do a slam. true story.
BENJAMIN! > or is it “spike”?

BENJAMIN! > QQ: What has been your favorite piece so far?

AMIR! > I’ll answer that because you said QQ.
VIRGIL! > Any skit your rapping…
CHUCK! > ace.
BENJAMIN! > ha…seriously.
VIRGIL! > a favorite of mine you need to drop a mixtape
BENJAMIN! > haha.
JAKE! > Stop.
JAKE! > I like “Six Flags” a lot
VIRGIL! > haha
BENJAMIN! > Amir’s part in that creeped me out
JAKE! > it’s hard to choose a favorite, each one has little things I like about it.
BENJAMIN! > phone call. hands down.
JAKE! > Haha I do like anything we shoot in the glass cube.
JAKE! > I’ll let that slide cause you’re quoting the video.
CHUCK! > i liked this one [burp video still/image]
AMIR! > lol. Burp was really funny.
VIRGIL! > thats a thousand words right there…

BENJAMIN! > Q-QUESTION: Is there a piece you guys would love to make but would maybe cost too much, or be too difficult?

AMIR! > I guess one where me and Jake are just hugging or whatever. Having fun.
JAKE! > That’s not a money issue.
JAKE! > Nothing specific, I think it’d be awesome to have special effects and stunts at our disposal.
JAKE! > Like make Amir blow something up.
CHUCK! > like a puzzle
JAKE! > Or just makeup artists to make Amir look like that.
AMIR! > Zat was my cousin, Leron.
BENJAMIN! > haha.
CHUCK! > ha
BENJAMIN! > he looks just like you. 10% cooler.
BENJAMIN! > just kidding
CHUCK! > Leron. is that pronounced like Lebron James? Or like Lee-ron
AMIR! > It’s pronounced like “Mi-kull”
VIRGIL! > i wanna know about the kid that sits right next to you guys in the office, like are they super jealous or annoyed??
CHUCK! > that’s what i thought
JAKE! > So Michael then, not Leron.
JAKE! > Nobody is as annoyed as I am.
AMIR! > The kid that sits next to me is Jake. And he is NOT annoyed.
JAKE! > I am. I always am.

BENJAMIN! > QUICK-Q: Did you think would be as popular as it is? Seriously, do you make pieces with growing your audience in mind?

AMIR! > As an artist, it’s tough not to consider the audience. You try to phase it out as much as possible. You see the numbers but you don’t want to assign them too much weight. You try to make videos that you find funny, and you know that if you keep on producing, and producing the end result will ultimately be a positive one.
AMIR! > lol Jake can I type now? git away from me keyboard!
AMIR! > Kay back, QUESTION, how many hamburgers can I fit in my mouth in half an hour?
CHUCK! > I’d guess… Eleventeen
JAKE! > I was just trying to help you. You don’t want my help just forget it.
CHUCK! > Or 6
AMIR! > :>
JAKE! > We already know, it’s a third.
JAKE! > You almost died.
BENJAMIN! > So its really more of a free form thing yeah? Not really concerned if ‘everyone’ likes it…more if you like it?
VIRGIL! > Death by fast food, so tragic!
AMIR! > Whateva.
CHUCK! > ha..
JAKE! > I think so far the people who come to Jake and Amir have liked the same things that we like, so we’ll keep up with that for now.

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: How often do you guys get hair cuts?

AMIR! > Once every two months. I get it all outta the way at the same time. Tooth brush, haircut, showa.
JAKE! > Gross.
BENJAMIN! > “Grody”
AMIR! > Jake.
JAKE! > I get one every other month-ish? I have no idea.
AMIR! > Jake.
JAKE! > I answered him, chill.
BENJAMIN! > this is perfect, ha.

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: Now, I’ve heard rumors about you guys doing ‘more’ than just web stuff, like TV. Which honestly kind of bummed me out. Do you think you, or anyone, could do little re-occurring ‘shows’ like you guys are for a living and never need a major network or even TV in general?

AMIR! > QQ: Can I make a keystroke that types Jake so that I don’t have to.
BENJAMIN! > Apple+Option+No you can’t.
AMIR! > I would NEVER do this shit for money. I would never put ANY of these videos on TV. I’m gonna do these vids the rest of my life FO FREE!
BENJAMIN! > So the MTV thing?
JAKE! > Is not a Jake and Amir thing.
JAKE! > We love
JAKE! > And we love making videos for it.
BENJAMIN! > Good…I’ll take my option to say what I feel: Don’t do TV. Keep it super internet.
BENJAMIN! > Sorry, I sounded all opinionated on that one.
JAKE! > I think if we ever had an option to expand on the website, or anything like that, it would be pretty exciting.
JAKE! > We do love the internet though, it has been good to us.
BENJAMIN! > Yeah, the post I made on, just kind of referencing how our generation doesn’t really care about TV much.
BENJAMIN! > And that why watch a 30 min show when I can watch 3 minute jake and amir clips.
AMIR! > Jackass Owns.
JAKE! > They don’t.
JAKE! > I agree, I go to the internet for most of my entertainment needs.
CHUCK! > what’s better. Jackass or Jake & Amir , or Elimidate?
AMIR! > Jake.
CHUCK! > haha
BENJAMIN! > ha..that doesn’t get old man.

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: How many hours of TV do you guys watch each week?

AMIR! > ANSWA 70. Easy.
JAKE! > You realize this is going to make you look sad, right?
AMIR! > No
JAKE! > Ok.
JAKE! > I watch a lot more TV when it’s baseball season.
JAKE! > I do watch Lost every week.
BENJAMIN! > Do you have cable?
JAKE! > I do.
AMIR! > I do nay.
JAKE! > So what do you watch for 70 hours?
BENJAMIN! > Me neither.
AMIR! > Soup or Sandwiches. Or whatnot.
VIRGIL! > QQ: what ya’ll NYC lifestyle like, are ya’ll out and about or always fliming?
JAKE! > We film after work, it has yet to interfere with our NYC social life, but I’m sure that will happen.
JAKE! > So you confused watching TV with staring at food.
JAKE! > That’s fine.
JAKE! > That’s normal.
CHUCK! > amir - what’s your favorite lunchmeat
AMIR! > Cod
CHUCK! > and cheese
JAKE! > I think I’m gonna be sick.
AMIR! > Cod and Cheese. Correcto
VIRGIL! > yikes
AMIR! > Wo- is that what Coddage Cheese is made of?

BENJAMIN! > (We’re about halfway thru) QUESTION: Describe the internet in 3 words.

AMIR! > Glowing portal hole made of wires and such
JAKE! > More words than 3, but you were close.
BENJAMIN! > So just those first three?
JAKE! > Yeah that’s my answer too.
BENJAMIN! > ha..

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: Pine trees or palm trees? Debit card or cash? Train or plane? Yes or no? Blackberry or iPhone? iPod or Zune? or

JAKE! > Palm, debit, train, yes, iphone, ipod and neither.
AMIR! > Cheddar, bacon, turkey, jam, cod, chocolate sauce and relish.
JAKE! > Sorry Amir thought we were ordering a sandwich.
BENJAMIN! > It happens.
AMIR! > On a pizza bagel.
CHUCK! > i wonder what chocolate sauce and bacon would taste like together
JAKE! > Stop.

BENJAMIN! > QUESTION: Favorite travel destination?

JAKE! > That’s sad.
JAKE! > I go to Nantucket with my family every Summer, that’s pretty awesome.
BENJAMIN! > So I’ve heard.
AMIR! > I’m comin this SUMMA! lol
JAKE! > Don’t you fucking dare,
CHUCK! > could make a 10 part series about it

BENJAMIN! > (Not as ‘fun’ a question, maybe?) QUESTION: I think pretty much all the ‘internet types’ would love to know what working at Connected Ventures is like. Why do you think there is such great continued success?

VIRGIL! > Amir, have you had the that double filet o’ fish they got for a limited time?
CHUCK! > yuck
CHUCK! > $1 sweet tea
JAKE! > Working at CV is awesome. It’s been the best job I can imagine having, I think their businesses are so successful because they’ve filled this company with great people who love to be here.
AMIR! > Wish I got paid, though.
JAKE! > Wish you got paid more?
CHUCK! > $6.75/hr?
AMIR! > Wish I got paid, Period,
JAKE! > that’s a comma.
AMIR! > no shiatsu
JAKE! > Stop saying that.

BENJAMIN! > QQ: Getting recognized on the street…how often does it happen?

VIRGIL! > Seriously when are ya’ll hosting Saturday Night Live, its needs ressurection
BENJAMIN! > I can totally see it.
JAKE! > It has happened, but not that often.
JAKE! > It’s still definitely more exciting for me to get recognized than it could possibly be for anyone to see me.
AMIR! > I get it a lot for Prank War and stuff. Maybe a couple times a month. Somebody actually mentioned it to me recently on vacation in Argentina.
BENJAMIN! > Yeah, you got wild press for that.
BENJAMIN! > I still can’t believe that…wow.
JAKE! > Ok so for this question you’re not in character?
JAKE! > That’s convenient.
BENJAMIN! > How was Argentina?
AMIR! > It was great. I was there for twelve days with my family. McDonalds is so cheap there.

BENJAMIN! > (Couple more questions) QQ: If you could organize a concert with five bands, dead or alive, who would they be?

AMIR! > Green Day, New Found Glory, Good Charlotte, Blink 182 and Sum 45.
BENJAMIN! > haha
JAKE! > Sum 41
CHUCK! > 41
CHUCK! > Sum 41
CHUCK! > ha
CHUCK! > what about Bowling For Soup…???
JAKE! > And I think that was the Pop Disaster tour.
AMIR! > And I think it ruled.
AMIR! > Lemme Doublay check
BENJAMIN! > That was the “buy the t-shirt before the show and wear it over your sweater during the show” tour.
VIRGIL! > hahah
BENJAMIN! > And you Jake?
JAKE! > I’d just put Third Eye Blind up 5 times in a row.
AMIR! > I was answering in character, but Jake is serious.
CHUCK! > i have the 3EB best of in my trunk right now
AMIR! > Jake has the actual band in his trunk
JAKE! > Every one of their CDs is a best of.
AMIR! > Not true.
VIRGIL! > touche

BENJAMIN! > QQ: Do other people at your office ever get annoyed when you’re filming for For example, ever hear people in the background like “Ugh, I wish they would actually do real work instead of making all these videos…” Or are people all really cool with it? Want to name names of people at the office who need to chill out?

JAKE! > Haha I think everyone in this office is used to disruptions, we’re a loud group of people.
AMIR! > Streeter.
JAKE! > Streeters cool with it
AMIR! > Fuck that guy.
JAKE! > Don’t print that.
BENJAMIN! > The “god bless you” one.
BENJAMIN! > “You inconsiderate bitch!” ...ha, that one got me.
CHUCK! > Oh yeah - what did you use for the blood splatter when Amir did a cannonball onto your head while you were doing pushups?
CHUCK! > Not that I’m assuming it was fake
JAKE! > We used Amir’s blood. We always use Amir’s blood for fake blood.
AMIR! > I bleed easily, brotha. Jake.
AMIR! > lol the needle hurts but whatevaaaa
BENJAMIN! > That’s pretty much it for the ‘real’ questions. We can do whatever after this. But we always end it off with: QUESTION: Had you ever heard of THE BRILLIANCE! What do you think of it?
AMIR! > oijadfoajsofjasodfjisajdfoasdijf saoijf osidfj osifj asoifj as
AMIR! > Sorry, Jake was wrestling me down to the floor
AMIR! > Never heard of it. lol.
CHUCK! > ha
JAKE! > He’s kidding.
BENJAMIN! > About the wrestling or the site?
CHUCK! > check it out sometime
JAKE! > We’ve been to your site, we think it’s really cool.
AMIR! > I have a site too!
CHUCK! > http://www.amir.usa
AMIR! > so. whateva AMIR! > Also:
BENJAMIN! > that first picture.

BENJAMIN! > And yeah! The suntan one. Was that spray-on-burn?

CHUCK! > spray-on-burn
CHUCK! > where do you buy that
JAKE! > Haha no, that was one of a few times that a video is based around my actual stupidity.
JAKE! > Another one like that is “Bubble Wrap”
BENJAMIN! > So that slap must have actually really hurt..
VIRGIL! > crazy
JAKE! > And when Amir says “Comprende” thinking he’s saying friend, that was me not knowing spanish.
CHUCK! > ha
JAKE! > Yes the slap was very painful, we did two takes of it
AMIR! > Bored as shit.
JAKE! > You can leave Amir.
AMIR! > staying.
JAKE! > Can I leave now?
JAKE! > Please?
AMIR! > ya, me and jake are going to DIN
BENJAMIN! > Are you guys still at the office?
VIRGIL! > haha, who is picking up the tab?
JAKE! > Yeah we’re not the office. Not getting dinner tonight though.
CHUCK! > where would you rate yourselves on that
AMIR! > 7
JAKE! > Amir’s checked out.
AMIR! > 8924u823uj
JAKE! > He’s going to be hard to control starting now.
AMIR! > Do you guys want Jake and Amir shirts?
AMIR! > Cuz if you buy all three at the same time yall can git free shipping or whateva
BENJAMIN! > I 80% want one…20% don’t.
AMIR! > well, not free shipping but like, you guys can consolidate orders
JAKE! > We’ll give them to them for free, Amir.
VIRGIL! > hahah
AMIR! > $20 a pop
CHUCK! > i want one
CHUCK! > but
CHUCK! > do you have XXTall
CHUCK! > not really though
JAKE! > I think we’re going to head out if that’s cool with you guys
JAKE! > I gotta get to the F before it just stops running for the night.
VIRGIL! > i gotta bounce too, thanks for takin the time out for TEH BRILLIANCE!!!

BENJAMIN! > For sure. Many thanks for your guys time. Please keep doing what youre doing. Super entertaining. We’ll have the interview up in about a week.

CHUCK! > yeah thanks dudes.
CHUCK! > it was very ace of you
AMIR! > When is this gonna go up?
CHUCK! > in a week, or within the year
AMIR! > Vee shall give you an hour
BENJAMIN! > About a week.
JAKE! > thanks you guys! if theres anything else you need just email us
JAKE! > chill amir
JAKE! > thanks again!!!
JAKE! > has left the room
VIRGIL! > haha. peace
CHUCK! > Thank you! have a good night..
AMIR! > has left the room


(Usually we have a few pictures of whomever we’re interviewing here…we thought a few of our favorite videos would work better.)

Phone Call from Amir on Vimeo.


New Years Resolution from Amir on Vimeo.


Trust Fall from Jake Hurwitz on Vimeo.


> Website: