Brian Quinn, part of the quartet behind the popular hidden-camera series Impractical Jokers, knows the joke is on him. When Quinn and his three lifelong friends aren’t pulling pranks on one another for the eighth season of the TruTV show, they’re traveling the globe for the Cranjis McBasketball World Comedy Tour. We caught up with Quinn before the jokers take the stage at TD Garden on Jan. 20.
When did you guys start pulling pranks? We went to an all-boys Catholic high school, so there was a lot of time to kill and a lot of energy to spend, if you know what I mean. Every time spring hit, we’d call it “spring fever,” and the whole school would just start acting up and doing stupid stuff.
Has a sketch ever gone really wrong? Since the joke is always on us, people never feel like we’re making them look dumb, so they never really get angry. It’s weird, but we have found that anytime Trump does something people find upsetting we almost can’t shoot that day. When he got elected, we were in the park filming and this woman just started screaming at us, so we’ve learned that when big political moves take place we’ve gotta go extra easy.
What can audiences expect from the live tour? We say it’s our version of stand-up. The four of us are on stage and we show videos that we shot just for the live show and we tell stories. We make fun of [James] Murray a lot. [Laughs.] We can’t do hidden camera live on stage but we try to get the spirit of the show going, which is just hanging out and having a good time with the audience. It works pretty well, and we have a lot of fun doing it.
Are you a prankster outside of the show? No! I’m 42. [Laughs.] I do like to bust chops. I’m a big fan of ripping into your friends and getting made fun of and stuff like that. That’s constant. That’s every relationship I’ve ever been in and that’s every friendship I’ve ever had, so in a way the spirit is there, just not through pranks.