On the Monday, November 30th edition of “The Freak Power Ticket,” creator Ted Coe welcomed Santa Barbara writer Mitchell Kriegman back to the KCSB studios for an hourlong conversation about his new novel Things I Can’t Explain, a modern-day sequel to the 1990s hit sitcom on the Nickelodeon cable TV channel, Clarissa Explains It All. It’s the follow-up to his 2014 debut novel Being Audrey Hepburn.
An edited podcast of their nearly hourlong, career-spanning interview is now online! (See player below to stream or to download the episode.)
Kriegman is best known for being the creator of Clarissa Explains It All, one of the first family sitcoms on Nickelodeon. As played by Melissa Joan Hart from 1991-1994, Clarissa was a self-aware adolescent with a quirky, mismatched fashion sense and a penchant for addressing the audience directly. The new novel is narrated by the same character, now in her late twenties in contemporary New York City, and finds her in surprisingly adult situations.
Later tonight, Friday, December 11th, KCSB-FM joins with Santa Barbara City College’s Film and Media Studies Department, Impact Hub, and Oniracom to present “Clarissa Fest” which will feature an episode screening, book signing, and Q&A with Kriegman.
The event will be held from 6-730pm in the Fé Bland Forum in SBCC’s Business/Communication Center. A “90’s Party” follows at the Impact Hub Santa Barbara (1117 State St.) with music by Ruben Zarate of Dante Elephante, a 90’s mix by KCSB’s DJ Darla Bea, a costume contest, additional episodes, and more. Tickets for the latter event are available HERE.
Kriegman’s short stories have been published in The New Yorker, the National Lampoon, Glamour, New York Press, and Harper’s Bazaar. He was a big part of the rise of Nickelodeon during the early 1990s, given his role as executive story editor on the original Ren and Stimpy, Rugrats, Doug, and Rocko’s Modern Life animated programs. He also created and produced Book of Pooh and The Jim Henson Company’s Bear in the Big Blue House, both for the Disney Channel, and It’s a Big Big World for PBS Kids, work for which he has claimed four Emmy Awards.
Along with his tie to National Lampoon magazine, Kriegman co-wrote former Saturday Night head-writer Michael O’Donoghue’s edgy comedy-anthology film Mr. Mike’s Mondo Video (in 1979), and had a one-year stint during the sixth season of Saturday Night Live in 1980-81.
Before joining the team of SNL as a filmmaker, performer, and writer, Mitchell began his career performing at the New York Dance Theater Workshop, The Kitchen, Franklin Furnace, and more.
“The Freak Power Ticket” airs on Mondays in the fall from 11am-12noon PST.