Bill Hader recently sat down with SPIN to chat about Barry, HBO's dark comedy series starring the comedian and former Saturday Night Live cast member as an ex-marine-hitman-turned-aspiring actor named Barry Berkman. The interview saw Hader elaborating on the show's subtle nods to metal — a Metallica poster spotted above Berkman's bed in episode one, a chaotic fight scene soundtracked to Pantera's "Cowboys From Hell" in episode seven — and later, offering details on his own personal relationship to the genre: it turns out, Hader used to be quite the metalhead.
Hader told SPIN that he initially pledged his allegiance to metal, especially Metallica. After hearing the Big Four thrashers cover two Misfits tracks ("Last Caress" and "Green Hell") on 1986's Garage Days Re-Revisted EP, he became a diehard punk, and even got sent home from his Tulsa, Oklahoma, school for wearing a Misfits shirt. ""It was the [shirt] with just skeleton Glenn Danzig singing and he has the hair. You know — the hair," Hader said, referring to Danzig's infamous reverse-ponytail (aka the "devilock").
Sadly, by the time Danzig and Jerry Only's Misfits reunion shows rolled around, Hader had long since retired from the pit. "I got invited to [a show] in L.A. a couple months ago and I'm going to be totally honest, I was like, there's going to be moshing and I'm afraid of being caught in a mosh pit," he admitted. "It's gonna get rowdy and I got three kids and I'm old and you know what? Watching them on YouTube is enough for me. I don't have to deal with someone punching me in the face."
Regarding the aforementioned Metallica poster hanging in Barry's decrepit apartment, Hader — who co-created the show with Alec Berg ("Seinfeld," "Curb Your Enthusiasm"), a fellow metalhead — says the prop symbolizes his character's underdeveloped emotional state. "[He's] stunted at a certain age, at the age of 15, and for me, that's when I was listening to Metallica," the actor explained.
Read the rest of the interview here.
Barry premiered on March 25th, 2018 and wrapped up in May. HBO, Hader and Co. earned 11 Emmy Award nominations for the show, among them "Outstanding Comedy Series" and "Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series." The cable-television giant has already signed on for a second season.