WATCH: Snapchat Series 'Road Trippin' Provides Platform For Black Gay Digital Stars
Digital stars Rickey Thompson and Denzel Dion have been entertaining millions of fans online with their hilarious videos for years, and now the content creators are bringing their queer infused brand of humor to Snapchat in the new digital series Road Trippin.
The series consists of 5-minute episodes and is described as a fish-out of-water buddy travel series where best friends and digital stars Rickey Thompson and Denzel Dion head down South on a road trip to get out of their comfort zone and share new adventures. From interacting with the locals to skydiving and bowfishing, the guys are about to throw caution to the wind!
The talented comedic duo, who are best friends onscreen and off, recently spoke with Paper Magazine about their new show, working with Snapchat and the start of their friendship in 2014. Their platonic love story is infectious and is the heart of the show, which serves as both a reflection of the kind of friendships some Black gay men are fortunate to experience or a reminder of what could possibly be missing.
How did you two meet and become friends? Tell me about your relationship as besties.
Denzel: We met in 2014. There was this convention, Digifest, and if you were on Digifest, you were that bitch — if you got on it, you were up-and-coming. It was one of those lottery ticket things, and Rickey and I got on it as Viners at the time. And then Rickey DM's me and was like, "Are you going?" I was like, "Yeah, bitch! I live in New York, are you going?" And then that's it. That's literally how it started.
Rickey: It was love at first sight, I always say. I just knew he was going to be my best friend forever. I got the energy and the vibe and I was like, "Oh my god, I love this guy so much," and the rest is history. We're still here and still have more years to go! I tell him he can't get rid of me.
Denzel: I will be getting rid of you soon.
Rickey: No! [Laughs]
Have you been together during this quarantine at all?
Denzel: Yeah, we were. We live down the block from each other. Rickey is next to me, so it's easier to see him now. Two years ago, like last year and the year before that, Rickey moved like 30 minutes away from me and we barely saw each other. We saw each other, but it wasn't a lot.
How has it been?
Denzel: It's been fine, I really wasn't doing anything. He would just go to my apartment or I'd go to his, but we never went anywhere as a group or collective unit. We haven't shopped!
So let's talk about your Snapchat show!
Rickey: Oh my goodness, we love this show so much. It's literally us going across America doing things that we thought we would never do. There's a lot of things that we're doing in this show that I have been wanting to do on my bucket list. With Denzel, he's the type of person that's like, "No, I'm not about it," but the fact that we were able to do this together, it makes me feel so good. It was a very fun process for us. We had so much fun being on the road doing adventurous things, getting out of our comfort zone.
Denzel: There were things I'd never do, like I'm from New York, I'm a city kid. I don't care about sheep and farms and stuff like that, but we did it and it was so fun. Rickey is very adventurous. I'm adventurous but to an extent.
Rickey: And this is something we've been wanting for so long. We've always wanted an opportunity to film something together. It was really cool that we were able to get this opportunity because it's a long road to get to.
What episode are you most excited about your fans seeing?
Denzel: "The Safari!"
Rickey: That's my favorite one.
Denzel: When we did it, I said this episode is IT. It is so funny.
Rickey: Out of all the shooting days, that was the funniest.
Denzel: It was obvious, the whole cast and crew was laughing the whole time.
Are you excited to be doing this through Snapchat?
Rickey: I'm excited because it is our first project and like what Denzel said, we need feedback together, so the fact that we have this show coming out and so many people are behind it is so exciting. This was such a long thing to work towards and we watched all the episodes, we loved the episodes, the show is so cute and so fun, they really show that it's so much fun to have an experience with your best friend.
Denzel: I feel like it's one of many we'll make together. It's like, "Damn, this is the type of hoodrat shit I want to do with my friends." We've had meetings, we've pitched so many show ideas and it's finally here. Also, everyone has Snapchat and we love our Snapchat team. Bunim/Murray, they produce Keeping Up with the Kardashians, they also did The Simple Life with Paris and Nicole; and also, Anthony Anderson from black-ish. I mean, hello Anthony Anderson is everything. It has the right names behind it and it felt good when we got that DM. I called Rickey and said, "Oh my god, Anthony Anderson just DM'd me and said our name came up in a meeting." We were both like, "Okay, something is happening."
Season 1 of Road Trippin is now available for viewing on Snapchat. You can watch the series trailer below.