Brandon Wardell Believes in Pizzagate and Free Healthcare

By
Photography Chloe Pang

Published February 3, 2020

Brandon Wardell is 27/M/LA. He’s also a comedian/actor/podcaster whose passion for the zeitgeist is well-documented and uncensored (unlike his size 13 feet pics—that’ll be $10, sweetie). Wardell trawls mainstream vices—streetwear, political antics, Dua Lipa—and bizarre internet K-holes in equal measure, nailing millennial blind spots like only one of our own can. His fans and trolls come for the tweets, potent little remedies for blue-light brain fog. They stay for hyper-relevant caricature, cringe, and gloriously surreal tangents.

Wardell was scouted on the D.C.-area open mic circuit in 2012, strapped with a bowl cut, backpack, and an opener involving his uncanny resemblance to Tegan and Sara. Soon after, he relocated to L.A., entering its alt-comedy orbit to heavy-hitting endorsements. In 2018, Wardell released his debut LP, An ASMR Album, to a surprise Pitchfork review (5.7). He co-hosts the very popular podcast Yeah, But Still with Jack Wagner, snagging covetable guests (Chapo Traphouse’s Felix Biederman, Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig) with their ad-lib approach. His recent cameos include I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson and a whole six seconds in the new season of Curb Your Enthusiasm. Should you desire some face time, Wardell hosts a monthly standup showcase, Brandon Wardell & Friends, at The Satellite in Silver Lake.

Everybody welcome Brandon. He’s here to sound off on 12 topics, chosen at semi-random.

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DUA LIPA

“I’m detrimentally horny for Dua Lipa. It’s wild that her government name is Dua Lipa. Truly born to be a star. I also do like her music. That new single? So good. I’ll wake up some days and immediately like a Dua Lipa picture, and I haven’t brushed my teeth yet. In conclusion, if Dua Lipa has a Google alert for her own name and she’s reading this… Please follow back.”

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SCAM CULTURE

I’m ultimately pro-scam culture. I think in a few years, the only occupations left will be podcaster, gamer, and scammer. You gotta pick one. They’re all equal, and everyone who isn’t a podcaster, gamer or scammer is the proletariat.”

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INSANE CLOWN POSSE

“I watched that one ‘Gathering of the Juggalos’ documentary a couple years ago on Vimeo, which is so good. I think the ironic ICP stuff is played out, in the same way ironic Guy Fieri stuff is played out. Honestly, I would love to, at some point, go to Cave-in-Rock—make a pilgrimage to Mecca, essentially—and pay my respects.”

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AESOP

Any time I go somewhere that has Aesop soap in the bathroom, I immediately trust that establishment. I doubt I’m ever going to own property, but I know that I have nicer soap at my apartment than my parents do at their house. And that feels like a small victory.”

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NATURAL WINE

“A cool thing to do on first dates is to order an orange wine and say, ‘Oh, did you know orange wine isn’t actually made with oranges? It’s just natural wine.’ About half of the time, the person will think it’s really interesting that you know that.”

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NEW YORK FASHION WEEK

Every week is New York Fashion Week, honey!”

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ANDREW YANG

“The point that’s been made regarding landlords raising rents by $1000 … I could get behind UBI [Universal Basic Income] if he also believed in rent control. I’m Bernie or bust, but I definitely like Yang way more than almost everyone else in the running. I don’t know why Tom and Amy are still there. Pete Buttigieg is fully a worm. Joe Biden’s out to lunch. Elizabeth Warren was my second choice, but she did my man dirty.”

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BONGS

“When I do get high, I prefer to use a joint. Bongs feel very collegiate to me. I think living in L.A. and being in comedy has made me hate weed. If anything, I would say weed culture has radicalized me into harder drugs. I’d like to be the Doug Benson of ketamine.”

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LIL B

“An influential, underrated, prolific artist. Please listen to this rare secret track.”

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TIK TOK

I’m in my late 20s now, so I just want to focus on wearing wider cut jeans and work and pretending to read books. I took Twitter off my phone. I prefer to kinda stay quiet online now. I can appreciate TikTok at a distance but I don’t want to get involved.”

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EPSTEIN CONSPIRACY THEORIES

“Part of me was annoyed that it became the ‘Bush did 9/11’ thing. Like, oh, it’s hack now, seeing big meme accounts doing these posts. Ultimately, they’re not talking about it on the news anymore, so it’s important to sustain the dialogue. I have very leftist politics, but I want to say I believe in Pizzagate as much as I believe people should have free healthcare. They shouldn’t be mutually exclusive.”

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SONIC THE HEDGEHOG

“I was raised in a Sega Genesis and Sega Dreamcast household, so Sonic was always an important part of my life. Despite my best efforts, I will not be playing Tails in Sonic the Hedgehog. I checked the IMDb, and I think Tails and Knuckles and Amy aren’t even in the movie, which really fucking sucks. If they make it a franchise and expand the universe, I do hope Tails is included. I’d really like to play him.”