Comedian says strangers think he is his crazy character, Rafi

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Jason Mantzoukas can claim a large number of onscreen TV and film credits, including Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Dictator, Bajillion Dollar Propertie$, Kroll Show, Parks and Recreation, the upcoming The Disaster Artist, and the just-released The House. But the actor says he is most recognized for the character he played on the defunct FXX show The League, a perverted lunatic named Rafi, who was given to such pronouncements as, “Let’s all get the same girl pregnant tonight!” and “I am day drunk! Get ready to see my d–k!”

“For the most part, people just either scream the name ‘Rafi’ at me, or they scream Rafi lines at me,” explains the actor and How Did This Get Made? podcaster. “So, they’ll scream, ‘Let’s all get the same girl pregnant!’ But people will just scream, ‘Rafi! Rafi!’ at me in a way that I take as a compliment, but is also acting in no way shape or form like anyone should act towards someone.”

And is that ever awkward?

THE LEAGUE, Jason Mantzoukas in 'Ol' Smoke Crotch' (Season 3, Episode 4, aired October 27, 2011), 20
Credit: Everett Collection

“Yes! Yes, it’s awkward, Clark!” laughs the comedian. “Of course, it’s awkward! I was in a public restroom two weeks ago. I was just at a sink washing my hands. A guy walks in and goes, ‘Oh, s–t, this guy’s here? Well, I guess we’re all about to see his dick!!!’ Now, what must that be like for all the other people in the bathroom to hear? Contextually, they don’t know what’s going on. They just heard a man walk in and claim that they were about to see another guy’s dick. It’s in-sane! I do take it as a compliment that people can’t imagine that character is a performance, you know what I mean? I must be doing something right to have so well captured a complete sociopath-lunatic that when people see me they’re like, ‘Uh-oh, I’m about to get stabbed!’ You know, they think they are meeting Rafi from The League! And I do take that as a compliment.”

Watch the trailer for The House, above.

The League

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