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LI twins' TikTok video to air on CBS reality show

Neal and James Crist, twin brothers from Rockville

Neal and James Crist, twin brothers from Rockville Centre, have gone viral with their TikTok video parodies. Credit: James Crist

A TikTok video by Rockville Centre twins James and Neal Crist will air Friday on CBS' "The Greatest #AtHome Videos" (8 p.m., Ch. 2). Titled "Post Shower Interview," the 20-second clip is part of their series parodying the platitudes of postgame interviews in sports: "Jimmy, can we get your thoughts on that shower?" asks an off-camera interviewer, thrusting a cellphone microphone toward a freshly showered man wrapped in a towel. "Yeah, great shower today, went in here and got the job done..."

"Post Shower Interview" came to CBS' attention through TikTok, James says. "They found us on the app, then they reached out to my Instagram profile that was connected to it, and they just asked me if we would like to showcase our video. And I said, ‘Yeah. Totally. Cool.’ "

The CBS program, hosted by Cedric the Entertainer, showcases viral home videos shot in the age of social distancing for the coronavirus pandemic.

"Once COVID started up, we got really bored," says James, 22, who like his brother recently graduated from Le Moyne College, a Jesuit school in Syracuse. "We've always been kind of on the creative side, I feel like, so this is just a way to get that out there."

They have been posting their parodies and other comedy shorts on the online platform, which accepts videos of up to one minute, "probably for the past several months," he says. The brothers' 14 videos so far, all but one of them comedies, have garnered between 27,500 and 1.9 million views.

"In college we started writing skits and stuff," Neal says, "and then got into songwriting because our dad's a musician, and we started doing parodies of songs." After posting a few comic bits set to music like Christina Perri's "Human" and MGMT's "Electric Feel," "We got into the aspect of sports interviewing and thought we could parody that." Dad Jonathan, the Town of Hempstead's deputy commissioner of Planning and Economics, is a vocalist and guitarist with Dogs of War, a classic-rock cover band of local officials and politicians that performs benefit concerts for veterans groups. Mom Kathleen works for the town in human resources.

Not all the boys' videos are the good, clean fun of "Post Shower Interview." One, titled "Wonder If This Has Ever Happened to a Blind Person Before," pokes fun at the sightless, positing a blind man mistaking IcyHot ointment for toothpaste. Another, "Post Argument Interview," describes an unseen girlfriend/opponent in less than sportsmanlike terms and boasts of making her cry.

The twins, who have a 24-year-old sister, Claudia, attended Uniondale's Kellenberg Memorial High School. In college, James majored in economics — he currently works for an insurance company in Garden City — and Neal in English. Their comedy influences include the YouTube channel GoodNeighborStuff, featuring the Los Angeles sketch-comedy group Good Neighbor, which launched "Saturday Night Live" cast members Beck Bennett and Kyle Mooney.

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