Arts & Culture

History, With A Twist

A Lutherville native gets his own Comedy Central show.

What makes history way more interesting? As it turns out: alcohol. Lutherville native Derek Waters, 33, and living in LA, got the idea for Drunk History while tossing a few back with actor pal Jake Johnson (New Girl). 

“He was really drunk and telling me about how Otis Redding knew he was going to die on that plane crash,” he says. “It was hilarious hearing someone so passionate, but frustrated that he couldn’t articulate it.” 

Waters decided to use his friends’ drunken, and usually inaccurate, tales as narration for short clips featuring famous comedians (think Will Ferrell) and himself acting them out in period garb. The wildly popular videos are now spawning a Comedy Central show, premiering July 9.

Each 30-minute episode is set in a different city and “recreates” historical events. “I went to a bar or organized a house party in every city,” he says. Comedians like Luke and Owen Wilson act out stories about Elvis, John Wilkes Booth, and even Patty Hearst. 

“I want to do something that is a little weird and keeps my friends in Baltimore laughing,” Waters says. “I want to make Hon kind of comedy.”