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Waterloo native Adam Devine, far right, stars in the Comedy Central show "Workaholics."

WATERLOO -- Adam Devine's parents may have hoped he would grow up to be a hard worker.

The Waterloo native, indeed, grew up to be a "Workaholic."

Devine's show, "Workaholics," which he writes and stars in with his Mail Order Comedy group, will begin its third season on Comedy Central this May, besting even his own expectations for success.

"I mean, I kind of thought it was going to be a build," Devine said. "Maybe Season 1 would come out, and not that many people would know about it, then by Season 3 we'd have a fan base. Really, (it was) after Season 1. ... Oh my gosh, people are watching this show."

Instead, the slacker comedy is one of the highest-rated among men 18-34, the coveted advertising demographic, and Devine finds himself mobbed by college students whenever he ventures outside of Los Angeles.

"I have friends who are like, ‘Don't you hate how nice people are to you all the time?' No, I love it," Devine said. "But yeah, it's great. Hopefully we can sustain it."

Devine left Waterloo with his family when he was 10 for Omaha, but he still has memories of his old house on Grant Avenue.

"I remember Dairy Queen, Chuck E. Cheese - the old Showbiz Pizza," Devine said. "It was awesome, just a lot of children, so we liked to get into mischief and throw rocks at cars. For most of my childhood, I mostly remember throwing rocks and/or water balloons."

He also remembers attending St. John's Elementary, where he acted in plays.

"There was this super babe, as far as you can be in the fourth grade, in my class," he said. "We did some play, and I made everybody laugh in the play, and then afterwards she said, ‘Oh, that was so funny. I can't believe how funny you were.' Then all these kindergarten kids came over and asked for my autograph. I thought, this is a job."

Devine was inspired to go to Orange Community College in Orange County, Calif., he said, because the movie "Orange County" had just come out. There, he met two of the members of what would become Mail Order Comedy, a sketch group.

"We were writing sketch comedy, TV pilots, and this was right around the time YouTube just came out, in 2006," Devine said. "We thought, ‘Oh my God, we can make our own videos and put them up and people can see them. So we started making a ton of videos."

Most of the 70 to 80 videos the group posted got a few hundred hits. But a couple of them got a few million, and one of those was spotted by someone at Comedy Central.

"We were kind of on the radar after that," Devine said.

Devine also just wrapped up a movie shot in Louisiana, "Pitch Perfect."

"It was a little different process than ‘Workaholics' because I have full creative process on the show; if I have an idea, I speak up and we do it," Devine said. "In the movie, I was just along for the ride, but I had no responsibilities: I go, remember my lines and go back to my trailer and play Playstation."

His group has a lot of projects in the works - an animated cartoon, a movie they're writing about three guys trapped in a hotel taken over by terrorists - so it's safe to say "Workaholics" is an apt title.

"At least it's better than the railroad, like my dad," Devine said.



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