Comedy Central takes a foray into ‘Delco Proper,’ as defined by three comic denizens

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 John McKeever and Tim Butterly star in the new web series about Delaware County, ‘Delco Proper.’ (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

John McKeever and Tim Butterly star in the new web series about Delaware County, ‘Delco Proper.’ (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

On Monday, Comedy Central launched a new comedy show set in Pennsylvania’s Delaware County.

“Delco Proper,” now just a 6-minute pilot on Comedy Central’s website, is about three friends from the Philadelphia suburbs who put themselves in crazy situations.

Creators Tommy Pope and John McKeever hope the episode generates enough buzz that Comedy Central will move forward with a series.

The characters are exaggerated version of Pope, who grew up in Upper Darby, and McKeever who lived in Northeast Philadelphia, “which is really ‘Delco Proper’ in another part of Philadelphia,” he said.

In the pilot episode, “Tommy,” “John,” and their bleached-blond, bearded buddy “Izzy” (Tim Butterly) pull up to funeral for an old high school friend.

“This is free, right?” Izzy calls from the back seat of the car.

“It’s a funeral, Izzy,” explains John behind the wheel. “It’s always free.”

“Nuh-uh. I had to pay five bucks for a cup at Frank Donnelly’s funeral.”

The action progresses as the trio attempt to mourn the loss of a guy they hated. Mixed with antics of other Delco denizens, the cocktail stirs to heights of lunacy.

“The place defines the people who come out of it,” said Butterly. “In a perfect world, we would just show what it does to these people.”

The team had created videos as the comedy troop Bird Text, including a popular spoof of Hall and Oates songs rewritten as Christmas carols. McKeever says he pitched the “Delco Proper” concept to Comedy Central to develop its characters beyond the random sketch routine.

“There’s a warmth to being in those areas where you feel part of a community,” said McKeever, sitting with Butterly in a Rittenhouse Square gelato shop.

“Otherwise, you’d roll up your windows,” added Butterly.

“Right. It’s a town full of ball-busters. ‘Delco Proper’ is essentially just …”

Butterly finishes for him: “”I’m so sick of Wing Bowl, dude. I better win this year.'”

Despite the pilot’s billing online as episode one, season one, there are no other episodes in the pipeline. McKeever and Pope have written a handful of “Delco Proper” scripts, and are waiting for the green light from Comedy Central — and a check to cover production costs.

“It’s been exciting. The feedback’s been so good,” said McKeever, two days after the launch. “But we’ve been so nervous.”

“I haven’t been able to enjoy any of it,” said Butterly.

“Yeah. It’s hard to enjoy because all we want to do is make these forever,” he said. “We can sit in a room and write these episodes all day long. We just want to make sure the higher-ups agree.”

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