What's Your Story: Michael Ian Black


Michael Ian Black is a writer, comedian, and actor who currently appears on Another Period, The Jim Gaffigan Show, and Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp. He just released a new book titled Navel Gazing: True Tales of Bodies, Mostly Mine (but also my mom’s, which I know sounds weird).

When did you start reading Vince?
I’m not sure. I may have picked up a book in the airport in 2010 or 2011. Despite the fact that I am a comedian by trade, I love to read international thrillers, spy books, assassin books, and books about geopolitical mayhem. Perhaps I secretly fancy myself a secret action hero.

Do you have a favorite book?
My favorite is probably Separation Of Power, if only because I think it’s the first one I read. I loved the whole Mitch Rapp universe, and as soon as I read my first, I started seeking out the others and devouring them. I think I read them all within six months.

Who is your favorite character?
The obvious answer is Mitch, but I’m going to go with Irene Kennedy because I love strong, powerful women - probably the same reason Judi Dench is my favorite Q in the James Bond series. I also love that she’s always got Mitch’s back; everybody wants that kind of loyalty in their lives, be it professional or personal.

Who do you envision when you read about Mitch Rapp?
First choice is obviously going to be me. I think I can do it, despite the fact that I am 44, out of shape, and, at best, a weakling. Nor can I describe myself as a “world-class triathlete.” But I’ve got a winning attitude. If not me, how about Channing Tatum? He’d be great. But only if I can be in it, too. I’m not going to just hand over the part to Channing and not get anything out of it for myself.

If you could be any character in the Mitch Rapp series, who would it be and why?
Honestly, I’d probably one of the nameless nerds at the CIA behind the computer screen who says things like, “I’ve almost cracked the encryption,” or maybe a second-in-command terrorist. Not the main terrorist, but one of the guys who gets killed right before the main guy. I think I’d make a good second-in-command terrorist.

Is there anything else you would like to share relating to Vince and his novels?
Just that I’m thrilled Mitch Rapp lives and will continue to read the world Vince created for as long as there are more books to read.