Comedy·CBC TV

Who taught you to be funny? The 'Kim's Convenience' cast share their influences

From Appa and Umma’s playful teasing to Jung and Kimchee’s hilariously antagonistic roommate relationship, it’s clear to see that this cast loves playing off one another.

The comedic chemistry between cast members is one of the many reasons fans love Kim's Convenience. From Appa and Umma's playful teasing to Jung and Kimchee's hilariously antagonistic roommate relationship, it's clear to see that this cast loves playing off one another.

Ahead of the premiere of season 3 of Kim's Convenience on CBC Television (Jan 8th at 8pm), our crew chatted with the stars of the show about their comedic influences. Here's who they highlighted:

Jean Yoon:

"My mom is pretty funny. And I remember growing up and watching Lucille Ball, Mary Tyler Moore, Carol Burnett and Lily Tomlin. Those ladies? Those ladies are funny."

"I really love a lot of the Canadian political comedians: Mary Walsh, Rick Mercer. I love when comedy and politics intersect."

Paul Sun-Hyung Lee:

"Growing up, watching guys like Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, John Candy. Rick Moranis, Dave Thomas, all the SCTV cast. The SNL casts. Robin Williams. George Carlin. Alan Arkin."

"Just to learn the art of storytelling and making it really relatable and very funny was huge for me. Learning that sense of the rhythm and the timing of everything, those guys were the masters."

"Ricky Gervais, Stephen Merchant… a lot of British influence as well, that dry, rapier wit that they have, where it just sort of like, 'Was he joking? I can't tell!'"

Andrew Phung:

"I would say the mid-90s to late 2000s SNL casts. The Will Ferrells, the Cheri Oteris, the Sandlers, the Farleys. That was my first exposure to comedy. They made me believe that the ridiculous is possible, and that characters could be created. Whenever I approach a project or I'm on stage, I feel like they're the ones who really inspired me."

Simu Liu:

"I guess, for me, I don't have a background in comedy — I'm not a student necessarily of comedy, I love and appreciate it. I think the people who I look up to and inspire me are the ones who are able to be really funny leading men, like the Chris Pratts, the Ryan Reynolds, the Will Smiths even! They're really hilarious people who also carry the thread of the story."

"I think that's a really difficult balance to strike sometimes and I definitely look up to their ability to do that."

Full episodes of Kim's Convenience are available to watch now on CBC Gem.