Things are going well for Marc Maron. He has a new comedy special; he has interviewed both President Obama and Saturday Night Live's Lorne Michaels on his podcast, WTF; and his IFC show, Maron, is in its fourth season.
But on his TV show, the fictional version of Maron is hitting rock bottom. After 16 years of sobriety, Maron's character relapses this season and ends up living in a storage unit.
The comic has had his own struggles with addiction, and he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that acting out his own fictional relapse was both challenging and terrifying. Relapse "is a very real problem and a very real fear of mine," he explains. "I'm glad it happened in fiction and not in real life."
Maron says that while he is grateful for his personal and professional successes, much of his onstage persona is built on anxiety, self-hatred and anger. "My comfort zone is uncomfortable, and it has been my entire life," he says. "Being sort of anxious and uncomfortable has really been my home base, innately. And I don't know how to change that, and that's really the challenge for me now."