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Koechner talks to Whatzup ahead of city visit

Star of ‘The Office,’ ‘Anchorman’ at Summit City Comedy Club, May 4-6

David Koechner will be at Summit City Comedy Club, May 4-6.
Anthony Gadson

Anthony Gadson

Whatzup Editor

Published May 3, 2023

Funnyman David Koechner is returning to the Summit City this weekend.

The man behind memorable comedic roles in The Office, Anchorman, Talladega Nights, The Goldbergs, and many more, including numerous animated roles, will perform five stand-up shows from May 4-6. Along with the standard shows, there will be a special trivia performance as his character Todd Packer from The Office at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 6.

“The Packer show is Packer-centric,” Koechner said in a telephone interview with Whatzup. “A lot of people come in with the confidence of, ‘I’ve seen all nine seasons (of The Office) 70 times.’ Sometimes, people who have claimed to have seen it 70 times don’t end up winning.

“I tell behind-the-scenes stories. I tell stories from my career,” he added. “So, it’s more than just trivia. It’s a show.”


Thanks for the popularity of The Office, his crass traveling salesman Todd Packer might be his most recognizable role. Although there is a difference between the man and the characters he plays, including the even more over-the-top Champ Kind from the two Anchorman movies, you may see those personas in his act, which begins Thursday, May 4, at 7:30 p.m.

“I know I have a responsibility to the audience to give them what they came there for,” he said. “I have no problem with that. Absolutely, there is some Todd Packer and Champ Kind that gets in there.”

But could a character like Todd Packer, whose first appearance on The Office was Season 2’s “Sexual Harassment” episode, exist in today’s climate? Koechner believes so … with a caveat.

“I don’t think it could exist as it was originally written, but certainly could exist,” he said. “The fun would be Packer’s struggle for relevance today or just his struggle to keep his job and mouth shut. Sometimes it’s just as much fun to watch a person struggle against his own personality as it is to unleash that personality. He would always have to watch to be on guard, and it’s always so much fun to watch a trapped rat.”

Easy transition

Going against the norm a bit, Koechner has been on the comedy scene the past 30 years, but began stand-up only 12 years ago following the birth of his fifth child.

“I decided, ‘You know what? You better always have an option.’” he said of adding stand-up to his resume. “I’ve always done live theater, sketch, and characters. I started in live theater and stayed in live my entire career. It was just a natural transition.”

Thanks to his many years of improv and sketches, including Chicago’s famed Second City and Saturday Night Live, the thought of getting on stage in front of people was not something to get nervous about.

“I don’t mean to sound arrogant about it, but I think I had proved to myself and audiences that I was capable,” he said. “Then you have extra confidence.”


With 241 acting credits to his name, it’s easy to point to Todd Packer or Champ Kind as highlights. However, among those credits are numerous animated films and shows, including The Epic Adventures of Captain Underpants television series, American Dad!, and F Is for Family. He notes the latter show as being among his proudest moments since the role of the politically incorrect boss Bob Pogo was written for him.

“It’s among my favorite things that I’ve done, for a number of reasons,” he said. “Mike Price is a genius, who created the series with Bill Burr. I love Bill, he’s a dear friend. I don’t know what is a bigger compliment than being asked to do that the show.”

Along with F Is for Family, other comedians that have written for him bring a smile to his face.

“Bobcat Goldthwait (who was at Piere’s last month) also wrote a part for me in his (Misfits & Monsters) series. And Dana Gould put me in his series (Stan Against Evil), too,” he said. “Those three things, probably the highlights of my career. To have Dana Gould writing for me, Bobcat Goldthwait writing for me, and Mike Price and Bill Burr writing something – to me, those are the greatest compliments I’ve ever received.”

Perhaps you too can give him a compliment when he’s in town. Or maybe point him in the direction of a good antique store.

“I’m always on the lookout for good ceramic clowns,” he said.


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