THIS IS TOTALLY RANDOM, BUT HE ACTUALLY LIVES IN MY HOMETOWN. HIS SON WENT TO MY HIGH SCHOOL, AND I USED TO SEE DEE SNIDER AROUND TOWN OCCASIONALLY, AT STARBUCKS AND STUFF. AND HE’S TOTALLY NORMAL LOOKING. WELL, OK, MOSTLY NORMAL. . . .
[Laughs.] Yes . . . mostly normal, yeah. He’s a really, really good friend of mine. He actually officiated my wedding, he’s the one that married us a few years ago, and he’s just the most normal guy. He never drank, he never smoked, he doesn’t party, he married his first girlfriend, he’s a family guy. And it’s just funny that people think of him as this crazy rock star because of Twisted Sister, but he was never a partier even then.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE TO MAKE HIS CHARACTER SEXUALLY AMBIGUOUS?
Well, when you look at, like, a Poison record or a Mötley Crüe record now, and think that girls found that attractive at some point? These guys almost look like women.
YEAH, IT’S KIND OF RIDICULOUS . . .
It’s so ridiculous! When I first got out to Hollywood, one of the first day jobs I had, before things started working out, was at the Rainbow Bar and Grill, a really famous heavy-metal hang-out on the Sunset Strip. And when you walk in there, it’s still 1989. The guys come in there on Friday nights with big hair, and spandex, and they just won’t let it go. And they don’t fit in the spandex anymore, necessarily. So I met so many Lance Rockets [Dee Snider’s character]. I’d meet these guys who were, like, 50 years old, still dressing like that, and they think they’re going to make it . . . and they’re in cover bands! I’m like, you don’t even have your own band, you’re playing other people’s music! And they don’t care. They’re like, “I’m going to be huge.” And that sexually ambiguous thing, I’m like, why do you choose to dress like a woman? I don’t understand it, it’s so weird. So we had a lot of fun with that this season, where it’s sort of a pastime at work of Joe [co-star Joe Lynch] and I trying to figure out whether he’s gay or straight, and we can never get a good answer out of him. So, in future seasons, we’re really going to have even more fun with that.
WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO CAST YOURSELF AS THE LEAD? IS THIS YOUR FIRST GIG IN FRONT OF THE CAMERA?
I’ve actually done a lot of acting, always smaller parts, because I’m usually the director, and it’s too much to direct and act. But I used to be a stand-up comic, and I always did theater and stuff growing up. And for this in particular, it was sort of how it all came together. Being a horror director, you kind of have to be an actor, because the directors in the genre are much more focused on than, say, the directors of romantic comedies. In romantic comedies, most people don’t even know who the director is, but in horror you do so many conventions, and appearances, and public speaking things. . . . And I’ve done so many short films that I’ve kind of become a bit of a personality as has Joe Lynch.