Last night at The Village Underground in New York City, IFC held a Benders sneak peek and comedy showcase in support of the show’s debut tomorrow. Not only did we get a first look at clips from the upcoming series, we were treated to some stand-up from the cast as well as its guest stars. The lineup included Andrew Schulz, who also hosted the evening, Robert Kelly, Kurt Metzger, Jim Norton, Godfrey, and Chris Distefano. The Underground was outfitted with posters of the show, Benders hockey pucks at every table, and the house staff in full Benders regalia including some sporting the official “Chubbys” team jersey. Schulz lead the way by opening up the night and continued to shuffle in and out of clips as he brought up each comedian.
Also in attendance and introduced by Schulz were co-stars Lindsey Broad and Ruy Iskandar along with guest star Steve Schirripa. Godfrey, a Chicago native, went as far as showcasing his hometown pride by wearing a Chicago Blackhawks t-shirt while Distefano jokingly self deprecated about his wardrobe choice as he performed in a New York Yankees Don Mattingly jersey. Kelly’s set focused on the importance of man hugs while Norton talked Trump. Metzger made it clear he’d prefer to have no legs, and Godfrey went off about how much he loves period piece films while throwing in some nice impressions. As for the stars of the show, Schulz walked the line by discussing domestic abuse in a comedic fashion and Distefano talked about his grandfather’s role in the Mafia. All in all, they showcased why they were chosen for this television setting that houses them on IFC.
As for the show, Benders follows a team of friends bonded by an irrational obsession with their men’s ice hockey team, The Chubbys. Paul Rosenberg (Schulz) is the insecure leader whose involvement with the team causes daily havoc for him and his wife Karen (Broad). Along for the ride are Paul’s best friends Anthony (Distefano), the charmer who schemes his way through life; Dicky (Gessner), the wealthy hedge fund manager whose answer to everything is in his wallet; and Sebalos (Iskandar) the slacker on a misguided search for his purpose in life. While their hockey skills may be limited their passion is not, as evidenced by the chaos their devotion to the game creates in their everyday lives. The show is brought to you by the team behind Rescue Me, Maron, and Sirens.
The eight-episode original hockey comedy premieres tomorrow October 1 on IFC at 10p.