Will Miles is a writer on probably the coolest show on TV right now, The Chris Gethard Show. It’s no wonder; his mix of honesty, sadness, and fun is pretty much a perfect fit. Race is a big part of Miles’ act, who says he “grew up black, and I’m still black today. . . . I tried to use Ancestry.com, but it went back a few hundred years and then just said ‘boat,’” he said in a recent set. “Then my computer exploded.”
A Chicago native, he’s been in New York since 2013, and has been featured everywhere from The New Yorker to storytelling podcast The Moth to truTV. He also cohosts “Comedy at the Knitting Factory,” and the podcast Hopefully We Don’t Break Up on Cave Comedy Radio.
When was the first time you remember making someone laugh? What happened?
The first time I remember making someone laugh was in 4th Grade, in Ms. Barth’s class. She asked if anyone had any questions, and I raised my hand. Then I said “Hey Ms. Barth, I just wanted to tell you I’m Michael Jordan” and that punchline hit really hard. The class erupted, Ms. Barth laughed, and I figured out I could get in less trouble if people laughed. I didn’t really even talk much before that, so making people laugh was how I learned to be sociable with people.
What is the toughest part about being on the comedy scene in Brooklyn today? What is the best?
The toughest part is getting from South Brooklyn to North Brooklyn and back. The best part is how much people are paying attention to the comedy in Brooklyn. I’ve heard from older comics that they never used to really consider even coming to Brooklyn for a show. It just wasn’t a thing back then. So it’s great that I don’t often have to leave the borough I live in to do comedy on a lot of nights. And industry comes to watch now, too, which is great.
Who do you find funny?
Vince Staples, the rapper, is hilarious. Also Martha Kelly on the show Baskets and Claudia O’Doherty on the show Love. And a lot of people I know in real life who I interact with almost daily.
What was the last time you laughed so hard you cried?
I got pretty stoned with my girlfriend and we kept trying out different dance styles in different rooms around the apartment. I couldn’t stop crying laughing for a couple hours.
What are your goals for your comedy career?
I want to eventually write a series of romantic comedy movies. Before that or around the same time, I want to play the stoner friend in a movie, and then have that stoner friend be the lead in another movie. I also want “Comedy At The Knitting Factory,” a stand up show I co-host with Kenny DeForest and Clark Jones, to be a TV show, and “Hopefully We Don’t Break Up,” a podcast I co-host with Giulia Rozzi, to be a TV show.
What is your favorite knock-knock (or otherwise goofy) joke?
I was chillin with my nieces, River and Lily, last night, and Lily said:
“your hair is gone”
That’s alt absurdist comedy at its finest.
To see 49 more of Brooklyn’s funniest people, click here.
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Photo by Nicolas Maloof.