MTV2 launches “Joking Off” with DeRay Davis on April 1, 2015, with a crew of comedy improvisers

The next iteration of MTV2’s meme mashup of Ridiculousness and Failosophy is here, and a crew of comedians is ready to improvise jokes, games and prank calls in the new comedic game-show series, MTV2’s Joking Off, which premieres this April Fool’s Day at 11 p.m. Eastern/Pacific, hosted by DeRay Davis.

Here’s the trailer. Roll it!

“Everyone should watch MTV2’s Joking Off because you need it in your life – you’ll be empty without it,” Davis said. “It will fill your funny void. It’s like the sugar in your Kool-Aid.”

“This show celebrates the most ridiculous aspects of social media,” said Paul Ricci, Senior Vice President, Head of Development and Production for MTV2. “Watching these talented comics and improv gurus target the most roast-worthy gifs, pictures, videos and profiles, is hilarious.”

Davis (@DeRayDavis) recently appeared in hot new FOX drama Empire, but already is a familiar face to MTV/MTV2 viewers, having performed on Nick Cannon Presents: Wild ‘N Out and Hip Hop Squares. A Chicago native, the comedian performed on the interstitial sketches on Kanye West’s “Late Registration” and “The College Years,” and has done his stand-up on Comedy Central, HBO and BET. His big-screen credits include supporting roles in 21 Jump Street, G.I. Joe, Barbershop and Semi-Pro.

He’ll be overseeing three two-person teams of stand-up and improv comedians, with a mix of guest stars and a more regular cast. They’ll compete in improv games such as OK Stupid, Textify and If They Could Talk, finding the funny in fake dating profiles, awkward text conversations and animal videos. Each episode’s dynamic duo that reaches the final round will then compete against each other in a prank-calling contest.

First-season guests will include Charlamagne, Timothy DeLaGhetto, Lil Duval, Jon Gabrus, Tanisha Long, Donnell Rawlings, Chris Distefano, Damien Lemon, Jordan Carlos, Monroe Martin, Shalyah Evans, Mike Winfield, Stephen Guarino, Awkwafina and Mac Lethal.

The series regulars? Dave Ebert, Desus & Mero, James Davis, Matt Pavich, James Manziello, Kristen Acimovich, Liza Treyger, Matteo Lane and Mike Camerlengo.

(Cast bios provided by MTV2)

Dave Ebert (@horsedivorce)
Dave Ebert is an actor, comedian, writer, illustrator, freestyle rapper, and guy. He received his BFA in Acting from SUNY Fredonia in ’09 and has been working in New York ever since. He performs live at the Upright Citizens Brigade with the Maude Sketch team One Idiot. You can also see him perform not live in his web series “Shane and Dave.”

Desus & Mero (@desusnice, @THEKIDMERO)
Desus Nice is a writer, host, and highly noted Twitter personality. Born and raised in the Bronx, he co-hosts the popular web series Desus vs. Mero on Complex TV. His work has been featured in Vulture, Gawker, Buzzfeed and several other media outlets. He once drank rum with Anthony Bourdain on “Parts Unknown”.

The Kid Mero is a New York-based writer, host, and Twitter personality. His work has appeared on Vice and Complex, and he is one-half of the popular web series Desus vs. Mero on Complex TV. He’s been written about in The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Vulture, and Gawker. He is currently working on a sitcom treatment with Ezra Koenig of Vampire Weekend, based on his time working as an aide at a New York City public school. He lives in the Bronx with his wife and two kids.

James Davis (@TheJamesDavis)
James Davis is a stand-up, writer and actor. Currently, he is a writer on James Corden’s “Late Late Show” for CBS, in addition to starring on “MTV2’s Joking Off.” He is a darling of Funny Or Die and has written, directed and starred in massive hits for the site. He’s their go-to impressionist for Barack and Kobe, in addition to creating his own original characters. Additionally, James recently completed a stint as a staff writer on the “In Living Color” specials for FOX and is a recurring character on Kevin Hart’s hit BET show “Real Husbands of Hollywood.”

James Manzello (@JamesManzello)
James Manzello is a New York City born, bred, and based actor, comedian, director, and musician. He has appeared on MTV’s “Totally Clueless,” ABC’s “What Would You Do?” and made his feature film debut in Noah Baumbach’s “While We’re Young.” His indie comedy pilot “The Neighborhood” won the Audience Award at the 2014 New York Television Festival, and he’s now featured on MTV2’s “Joking Off”. James has also voiced and appeared in many commercials, including Apple’s “Designed by Apple in California.” He has written, directed, scored, and starred in a number of shorts and sketches that can be seen on the Internet.

Kristen Acimovic (@Yackimovic)
Kristen Acimovic is a writer, actor and general scamp-about-town based in New York City. Originally from Boulder, Colorado, she cut her comedy teeth at NYC’s Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theatre, where she’s been performing sketch and improv on the Chelsea mainstage since 2010. Kristen has been a series regular on two MTV shows, shot pilots for Comedy Central and A&E, and regularly writes and acts in videos all over the internet. She holds an English degree from Northwestern University, a Hubai high red belt in Hapkido, and spends more time than she’d care to admit on Game of Thrones message boards.

Liza Treyger (@Glittercheese)
Liza Treyger is a Chicago-bred stand-up comic who now resides in NYC. She really misses alleys, her favorite bartenders and her Russian parents. She recently performed at the Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal and has appeared on Adam Devine’s House Party on Comedy Central, and Chelsea Lately. She was thrilled to be a part of the New York Comedy Festival 2012 as one of Comedy Central’s Comics to Watch (where she got to watch shows and eat cake balls with two professional wrestlers!). She also has a web series called How Many Questions.

Matt Pavich (@MattPavich)
Matt Pavich is a comedian and actor from New York City. He is the co-creator/star of the series “The Neighborhood” which won “Audience Award” and “Best Editing” at the 2014 New York Television Festival. He is featured in Elite Daily’s “Gen-Why” YouTube videos and is the cofounder of STINKHOUSE. You can catch him live at his monthly show at New York Comedy Club “Matt and Matt’s Laundromat.” He is also the cofounder of the YouTube Channel MANWICH.

Matteo Lane (@MatteoLane)
Matteo Lane is a New York-based comedian, originally from Chicago. Before starting stand up, Matteo lived in Italy as an oil painter and Opera singer. After realizing that he wasn’t going to become Maria Callas, Matteo began telling jokes to strangers in dark rooms. Matteo has performed in the Montreal Laughs Festival, on Comedy Central and has been heard on SiriusXM radio.

Mike Camerlengo (@MCamerlengo)
Mike hails from Melrose, Massachusetts and began writing and performing comedy in college. He can be seen performing standup, sketch and improv on stages all over New York City as well as hosting the popular monthly show “Late Night TV.” Prior to joining the cast of “MTV2’s Joking Off,” Mike worked on “Unite,” ESPN’s first late night entertainment show. There, he created nightly comedy videos as well as guest-hosted the show. Mike is a contributor to Onion Sports and has recently been featured on HuffPo Comedy, Splitsider, the Tosh.0 Blog and everyone’s favorite South Jersey classic rock station, 105.7 The Hawk! When he’s not performing, Mike is usually reminiscing about the intramural flag football championship he won in college.

“MTV2’s Joking Off” is Executive Produced for MTV2 by Candida Boyette-Clemons, Darin Byrne, Paul Ricci and Chris McCarthy. Colby Gaines serves as Executive Producer for Back Roads Entertainment and Michael Canter serves as Executive Producer/Showrunner for Canter/Krask Industries. “MTV2’s Joking Off” is directed by Steve Paley.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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