Just days after the announcement came that Yahoo! would be home to the Saturday Night Live archives, the web powerhouse presented plans for a new lineup of original video programming. The scheduled programming—set to premiere later this year—includes a series about a four-inch-tall P.I., created by Ed Helms, and a grill-centric cooking show. And this gem: Losing Your Virginity with John Stamos. The series—executive-produced by Stamos and documentarian Morgan Spurlock—will consist of the erstwhile Full House star interviewing celebrities about their First Times.
Stamos spoke to TIME about the concept for the show, the serious thoughts behind the comedy and, of course, his own first time.
The show’s title, Losing Your Virginity with John Stamos, is it descriptive—or an imperative?
Well, it’s not like, ‘Hey, come with me! Let’s go lose our virginities together!’ It’s not that self-explanatory. I’ve always been interested in this time period in everyone’s life. And not just the down-and-dirty sex of it all. But the loss of innocence, if that’s indeed what it was, or a turning point in someone’s life, love, how they view men or women afterwards, how they view the world. I remember thinking, literally the first thought after it happened, was, ‘Wow, this is what the whole world revolves around? I don’t get it. I better keep trying.’ It was very disappointing in the sense that obviously you build up something in your mind for it to be. The thing I love most about it is that everyone has a different interpretation of what happened to them. I’ve been talking about this show for years and everybody has a different feeling about it.
Where did the idea first come from?
I was at my parent’s house and this gal who was a bass player in my band brought her sister over. She was about 10 years older than me and I hadn’t seen this sister in long time. And I realized, ‘Oh, this girl looks familiar… wait a minute… now I know where I know her from.’ I figured out that that was the lady that I lost my virginity to. It was just interesting. I got to thinking, wow, for every celebrity out there, every musician, every politician, there’s somebody watching them on TV or listening to their music or watching them on the news saying, ‘I was their first.’ That’s interesting to me. Their side of it and also the celebrity’s side of it, and inevitably it’s going to be different. One’s going to say ‘it was the most romantic night of my life’ and the other says ‘we were drinking in the back of his El Camino.’
(MORE: Saturday Night Live Moving to Yahoo!)
Is it hard to get people to share their stories?
Here’s the deal: the celebrity gods, or whoever, have kicked the chair out from under the preciousness of us famous people. The lines are not just blurred, they’re gone. When you have Matt Damon dressed up in a Fruit of the Loom outfit on Jimmy Kimmel, or Paul McCartney doing a parody of “Yesterday,” all bets are off. TMI doesn’t exist anymore. There’s not “too much.” Obviously, it’s personal, but I think people talk about way more personal stuff than this. This is a common denominator. That’s what’s happening now with social media. We’re all telling everyone in the rest of the world, ‘hey we’re normal people, we get up, we drink coffee, we do this, we do that, and I don’t think it’s such a bad thing.’ People are able to relate to us and know that we’re not any better than them and that we go through the same things that they go through. Depending on what age you are, most of us have lost our virginity and it might be fun to compare stories.
It sounds like it won’t be very graphic.
Not at all. The less graphic, the better. The format is going to be me taking a friend out, whatever the situation may be, and talking about that time in their life. Not just that moment, and certainly not graphic details. More about the feelings. How they were before that moment, or hour, or six hours. And how they were after.
Have you taped any episodes yet?
No. The show could sort of work in three ways. One may be just the celebrity talking about their experience and we may animate it with animation or puppets or stop-motion. The other way is I’d like to get the other person’s point of view of the story, that guy or gal, find them, and hear what they have to say about that time. And then the third, the grand slam as far as I’m concerned, is to get them both together again. My first and I together is a great two-shot. Trust me.
So did you end up saying something to her when you recognized her?
It was uncomfortable. My parents were standing right there. She’s a great girl and still a really good friend of mine. In fact, recently, at Christmas, I told her I’m getting pretty close to doing this show. She said, ‘Oh, can I be on it?’ I said, ‘Oh yeah, you’re going to be on it. Don’t you worry.’ She started to tell me her side of the story but I said I didn’t want to hear it. Clearly we have two different viewpoints. The thing that I remember, the way that it started—and then I’ll stop at this—is that I was giving her a ride home to her house and driving my dad’s El Camino. She dropped her car keys into my lap and took her hand and got the car keys herself. The rest was history.
How old were you?
I was 17 and a half. That’s when you always use the half.
Who would be your dream guest?
I have so many. A bigger star doesn’t mean the story’s going to be more interesting. I remember recently I asked Bob Saget and told him I’m doing this new show and I’d like to have you on it—and by the way, who was your first? And he said, “My wife. And I had three kids with her.” I thought that was really special and sweet, and so far that’s one of the best stories I’ve heard.