Trevor Moore, a founding member of the Whitest Kids U’ Know comedy troupe, died on Friday night according to reports. The 6-foot-6-inch comedian with an arsenal of exaggerated faces was a common presence on television and in web videos beginning in 2007. He was reported to have died in an accident, but the specifics are not yet known. He was 41.
Moore was born in Montclair, New Jersey to Mickey and Becki Moore, Christian rock singers who had some success in the 1970s. He came of age in Charlottesville, Virgina, where he had his first book of cartoons published at the age of 15. At 17 he started a public access TV show.
In the 2000s, at New York’s School of Visual Arts, he formed The Whitest Kids U’ Know with an eventual final line-up of himself, Zach Cregger, Sam Brown, Darren Trumeter, and Timmy Williams. They gained a strong following at clubs, and after a win at the HBO U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in 2006 landed a television gig.
That same year they shot the first season of their self-titled sketch series for Fuse, with the second season moving to IFC. Moore was credited as head writer and, with Cregger, directed most of the episodes.
Moore’s style see-sawed between deadpan to rubber band-like cartoonish reactions. He balanced a sinister edge that sometimes stomped on the border of bad taste with his youthful, wholesome looks. A good example of what Trevor Moore could accomplish by himself just talking is found in this short sketch, examining the nuances of free speech and clobbering it to death.
Other great WKUK moments (though comedy is subjective!) include his ahistorical portrayal of John Wilkes Booth and the shockingly clueless advertising executive presenting an offensive new soda commercial.
There was also the time he brought snacks on the space shuttle.
Moore and Cregger attempted to expand into theatrically-released feature films, but their 2009 sex comedy Miss March was not a rousing success. The fifth and final WKUK season in 2011 serialized a feature-length project, The Civil War on Drugs. (Abraham Lincoln, for whatever reason, factored into a lot of Moore’s comedy over the years.)
In 2011 Moore started appearing on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno as a correspondent. More recently he co-created two Disney Channel shows: Walk the Prank, a practical jokes reality program, and Just Roll With It, a hybrid of a multi-camera family sit com with improv theater. In 2019 the Trevor Moore Talk Show began airing on Comedy Central. The most recent episode aired in late June.
The Whitest Kids U’ Know continued to collaborate over the years, recently uploading new sketches and a Dungeons & Dragons campaign to YouTube and Twitch. The group recently completed their first animated project, called Mars, and were in post-production when Moore passed away.
Moore’s wife, Aimee Carlson, a television producer, released a statement saying “we are devastated by the loss of my husband, best friend and the father of our son. He was known as a writer and comedian to millions, and yet to us he was simply the center of our whole world.”
Cregger and Brown released a joint statement saying “he was our best friend, and we speak for all of us in saying that the loss of Trevor is unimaginable. We are heartbroken and our grief pales in comparison to the loss felt by his wife and son.”
On Twitter, Timmy Williams shared an old photo of the two of them traveling by train.
Darren Trumeter shared a wordless video of ocean waves.
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