Thanks for this question!
Andy Kaufman is clearly an influence on Tim and Eric. I am going to venture a guess that he is a bigger influence on Tim, if Tim’s solo work is taken into account.
Like Andy Kaufman, Tim often leans on the uneasy “is he kidding or not?” kind of confrontational comedy. He wrings humor from making people uncomfortable and unsure of him and his intentions and is unafraid of looking like an asshole. He also has a streak of goofy weirdness like Andy Kaufman did. See here for what I mean.
To further my point, Tim recently participated in a panel discussing Andy Kaufman’s influence on comedy and on his own work at MOMA. I heard about this panel too late or I would certainly have gone.
At any rate, I think most modern comedians owe a debt to Andy Kaufman, but you are definitely correct in thinking Tim and Eric are particularly heavily influenced by him.
Eric Wareheim, an all around great and beautiful human, was born this day 37 years ago.
Happy Birthday, Eric!
It’s Valentine’s Day… show a little affection.
Happy April Fools day from the biggest prankster of all time, Q.
Julian and those pants… Can’t decide if I want to see them on him or off him!
Take Me Out to the Holosuite, 7.4
That was the best 10 minutes of my life!
Lost my shit at chinfinite
Damn. Bashir be lookin’ güd in those tight pants…
[Alexander Siddig is going to be at the 2013 Las Vegas Star Trek convention!!]
“I can explain,” Sherlock promised, his voice raw and rough in John’s ear. “I will tell you everything… anything… all of it, I swear…” He swallowed, knowing he should pull back, give John time, allow room for his anger. “I’ll let go in a minute… “ Sherlock held on.
Slowly, John’s arms rose to wrap around the apparition before him, unexpected, unbelievable, but entirely and completely familiar. “Sherlock…” he started, but there was nowhere to go beyond that name… nothing else in the world that he wanted. “Sherlock…” His arms tightened, fingers splaying out. “Don’t let go…”