They mix funny business with pleasure.
Kim and Penn Holderness — the family behind some of Facebook and YouTube’s most-shared funny videos — are no strangers to bad news. So when the former New York City journalists-turned-online comedians first began their coronavirus lockdown last month, they knew they had to joke about it to make others smile.
“Our goal has always been to make people laugh, even if it’s laughing at us,” said Kim, who, along with her husband, is behind viral sensations “New Normal in Quarantine” and “Gimme Six Feet (Physical Distancing Remix).” “After watching a depressing news conference, if they need a pick-me-up, they can watch one of our videos and get a giggle.”
The husband-and-wife duo — who make a living churning out hilarious parody songs and sketches for their more than 3 million followers — believe that a little “dose of laughter in an otherwise overwhelming period of time” can be a much-needed breath of fresh air, Kim, 44, told The Post.
“It’s been therapeutic to focus on creating comedy and not be watching the news quite honestly,” said the mother of two and former “Inside Edition” correspondent.
In the four-minute video “My Husband is Acting Like Our Dog” posted March 19, Kim recites all the ways her husband is just like a dog during quarantine.
“Sometimes he gets so bored, he gets into something he shouldn’t,” she says, while Penn, 45, laps up a jar of peanut butter. In other scenes, Penn is shown doing other canine-esque activities like calling for a friend as if he’s barking, running outside the door because it was left open and staring out the window at passersby.
The inspiration actually came from Penn’s real-life behavior.
“I’ve always called my husband a human golden retriever because he’s always really happy and jumps on people and sniffs people — no, I’m kidding, he doesn’t sniff people — but he’s a flaming extrovert and so desperate for human interactions just like our dog,” she said, laughing.
Penn, a former video essayist for ESPN/ABC sports, added how “this is a really tough time to be an extrovert, and I look at my dog looking out the window and I’m like, ‘Yeah sweetheart, me too.’ ”
In another quarantine-themed video made for UNC Health, Penn sings about the importance of staying 6 feet apart during lockdown.
Now, with business re-openings in our midst, the witty pair have already cooked up a new sketch about real-world retraining.
“This morning, I was like, ‘I don’t know if I’m ever going to be able to wear real pants again, or put on a bra,’ ” Kim said. So the couple got right to filming.
“I’m teaching a pajama-wearing mom, like, ‘These are pants and there’s a zipper, and this is a razor and you can use it on your legs,’ ” she said, laughing again.
Sometimes they get their kids, Lola, 13, and Penn Charles, 10, involved, too, since they are the reason the jokesters started making videos in the first place.
“One year our kids would not sit still for a Christmas card picture, and I was like, ‘Well, you should quit your job [to Penn], we should do a parody video that you quit your job … and that became ‘Christmas Jammies,’ ” said Kim, of the 2013 clip. “It was supposed to be a video that our friends and family saw, but within a week millions of people had seen it.”
By 2015, the couple was making almost a video a day from their home in Raleigh, North Carolina.
“It’s a very weird way to pay the mortgage — our family is still super confused,” said Kim. But “my dream job was to do feature stories … and now, I basically get to do that every day.”