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Notes: Keegan-Michael Key plays Luther, the Detroit Lions fan translator

We are all Luther in spirit

Detroit Lions v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

The Ringer’s Kyle Brandt hosts a podcast available on Spotify called 10 Questions, and his guest on Wednesday was noted Lions superfan Keegan-Michael Key. The format of the show is an alternating sequence of trivia questions (ten of them) and regular interview questions/stories. While Key was on to discuss his new project called The History of Sketch Comedy, it was inevitable that the Detroit Lions would come up.

After trivia question seven about a fantasy Lion, Brandt asks the co-creator of Comedy Central’s Key & Peele to revisit his character Luther the anger translator. Only this time, with a Detroit Lions angle.

Sketches with the Luther character ran from 2012 to 2017 on Key & Peele, in which Keegan-Michael Key played a corporeal realization of the inner rage being suppressed by Jordan Peele’s calm and collected depiction of President Barack Obama during his second term. Instead of having to imagine what the true thoughts of the president were, the viewer could see it acted out in ridiculous fashion by Luther, the president’s anger translator (this link goes to the first sketch introducing the character. Warning: much profanity).

On Wednesday’s show, host Kyle Brandt asked Key to play Detroit Lions Translator. “Here’s what I mean, I’ve got some sound for you having to do with the Detroit Lions. As a guy who grew up in Detroit and knows what makes Lions fans live and breathe, just say what they’re really thinking” as fans hear these clips:

  • Fox 2’s Dan Miller from last season talking about the path forward for the franchise
  • Barry Sanders from his Hall of Fame Acceptance Speech
  • Calvin Johnson on how his teammates did not believe he was going to retire

This segment begins 40 minutes into the podcast (jump to 39:50 and go from there), and Key does a great job channeling impromptu Lions fan rage. Brandt plays each audio clip, and the comedian impressively goes right into it with no preparation.

The entire podcast is great fun, and has stories spanning growing up playing baseball at the intersection of Woodward and 8 Mile to imagining Weird Al Yankovic playing the Super Bowl halftime show. If you have a Spotify account, give it a listen and you won’t be disappointed. Now, on to the rest of today’s Notes:

  • A few coaching moves related to former Lions coaches happened this week. First, former defensive coordinator Cory Undlin is joining the San Francisco 49ers staff as a defensive pass game specialist/secondary assistant according to Adam Schefter.

  • Second, former Lions character coach Dylan Thompson has been hired for that same role by the Houston Texans organization according to Aaron Wilson. A cached copy of the old Lions staff page for Thompson describes the job as follows: “In his current role, Thompson is responsible for a variety of programs within team development, where he assists athletes with their transition into the NFL, as well as providing off-the-field support both during and following their careers.”

  • I’m just going to leave this here for anybody who hasn’t seen it yet: