We meet at Le Rêve, a legendary bistro in Montmartre, a dream on the sidewalks of rue Caulaincourt. Four leather banquettes, eight minitables, snails and celery remoulade à la carte. A timeless bar. Thomas VDB is in his element. We’re trying to identify the breed of the dog embroidered on his sweater. A Brittany spaniel? As a reminder of his penultimate show, Bon chienchien, where he spoke of his love for “his grandmother’s grandfathers” , but also for the sociologist Pierre Bourdieu, his addiction to the Internet (notably this video of an orca chasing a bear ) and cigarettes (with this unbearable habit of non-smokers to calculate how much you would save per year, and to convert the sum into “travel”).
Three years later, this former rock critic, fan of Queen and Sparks, expert in Brazilian music (and Taylor Swift), still doesn’t have a dog, has stopped smoking (well, almost) and no longer has really neither the time nor the desire to spend five hours glued to his computer (even if he liked to chat with the grazers). Since 2020, he has taken his biting humor and his scruffy panache to the cities of France (240 performances) to play his only-on-stage Thomas VDB s’acclimate , written with his partner, the actress and writer Audrey Vernon. Over his glass of quincy, the 46-year-old comedian admits that, without her, he would perhaps never have done a show on ecology, despite his persistent phobia of heatwaves… and cars. “Always, as soon as I get into a car, I tell myself that I am going to die. »
It must be said that, at the age of 25, this eternal passenger was hit by a concrete block, thrown by thugs from the top of a bridge, while a friend was driving at 110 on the highway. One accident among others (a suicidal deer) which finally convinced him to definitively opt for public transport. He has not given up hope of getting his license – he has just obtained the code after the fourth attempt. Not to drive regularly but to be credible when he takes the wheel in his film roles, as in the aptly named Good Driving (2023, by Jonathan Barré) alongside Laure Calamy, irresistible serial killer of drivers.
Eco-friendly despite himself
On stage until April 2024, this maestro of self-deprecation makes fun of his new status as a “neorural”, ex-Parigot installed in a house with a garden in Etampes, unable to grow a salad. Ecological in spite of himself, but not a lesson giver. Who, to heal their anxieties in the face of disillusioning tomorrows, prefers to laugh at the end of carelessness for this generation of forty-somethings fed on plastic and the mirage of infinite growth: “When we were kids, ecologists like Dominique Voynet and Brice Lalonde passed for puppets. For us, the only worry was unemployment. »
You have 65% of this article left to read. The rest is reserved for subscribers.