8 greatest episodes of Zach Galifianakis’s Between Two Ferns

Prepare to feel very, very awkward...

Charlize Theron and Zach Galifianakis in Between Two Ferns
Funny Or Die Charlize Theron and Zach Galifianakis in Between Two Ferns. Image Funny Or Die

We all know Zach Galifianakis from his scene-stealing turns in The Hangover movies, but outside of that he’s probably delivered his best work in spoof talk show Between Two Ferns.

Usually played out as sub-10-minute excruciating chat with a major celebrity or high-profile public figure, Galifianakis makes his guest (and viewers) squirm as he blunders through inappropriate car crash questions.

Most recently he’s had Hillary Clinton in the hot seat, firing back and forth at the Democratic Party nominee in a bid to get her to dig into Donald Trump. No luck. And for what’s worth Galifianakis won’t be featuring the Republican blowhard on the show.

“I wouldn’t have somebody on that’s so mentally challenged,” he told the LA Times. “I feel like I’d be taking advantage of him. And you can print that.”

With Between Two Ferns back in the spotlight, here are eight of the Funny Or Die show’s greatest ever episodes for you to revisit.


1

Natalie Portman


Galifianakis is in full-on creeper mode as he quizzes the Black Swan star on pubic hair routines and asks for a penis measuring contest with her dog Whiz. Awkward.

2

Brad Pitt


This was good back then, but imagine what a Between Two Ferns with Brad Pitt would be like now? The highlight of this is probably Galifianakis asking Pitt how he keeps up his tan when his wife is forever keeping in the shade.

3

Michael Cera


The very first Between Two Ferns was a masterclass in cringe. We’d expect nothing less from Michael Cera, who’s made a career out of playing awkward young men ever since Arrested Development.

4

Steve Carell


In this episode, the interviewee fights back. Oscar-nominated Foxcatcher and Office star Carell annihilates Galifianakis with fat jokes, making this one of the more fiery instalments of the show.

5

Charlize Theron


Charlize Theron flirts with Zach Galifianakis – and she flirts hard. Naturally, the host has absolutely no idea how to deal with this. Also worth noting: Theron looks absolutely blazed (probably by design!).

6

Will Ferrell


Before the release of Ferrell and Galifianakis’s political comedy The Campaign, the pair teamed up for one of the funniest ever Between Two Ferns episodes. One word for this: homoerotic. 

7

Jon Hamm


We all know Hamm as Mad Men’s smooth operator Don Draper, but he also happens to be a brilliant comedy performer. “The women in the show sure are really pretty. Did you ever get around to fingering any of them?” Galifianakis asks with a complete straight face.

8

President Obama


This was some coup for Between Two Ferns. It’s also the most-viewed ever episode of the show – and for good reason. Galifianakis asking Obama what it feels like to be “the last black president” is the kind of jaw-dropping gag you never thought he’d be able to get away with.

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Loaded digital media manager Simon Reynolds has written about film and entertainment for various leading websites since 2008. Follow Simon at @simonreyn