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'Veep' Made a Politician Laugh So Hard He Gave Himself a Black Eye

He reportedly choked on his sushi, hit his head on a cabinet, and woke up with a split cheek.
Photo by Flickr user Elvert Barnes

In what sounds like a plot point straight out of Veep itself, an Australian politician laughed so hard while watching the HBO show that he choked on a piece of sushi and gave himself a black eye, BuzzFeed News reports.

Australian MP Graham Perrett was reportedly eating dinner in his kitchen and watching the season six premiere when, evidently, the episode took a particularly funny turn. Dan Egan, who's now working as a TV host after serving as Selena Meyer's communications director, finds Jonah Ryan, the former White House aide turned congressman, shaving his head in an apparent attempt to trick people into thinking he has cancer. The scene left Perrett in figurative (and later, three actual) stitches.


"Some of the rice went down the wrong way," Perrett told BuzzFeed. "I started choking and I kind of stumbled forward and knocked my head on the corner of the kitchen cabinet."

A few seconds later, his wife found him splayed on the ground, covered in blood. He'd split open his cheek, bruised the bridge of his nose, and given himself a black eye after cracking up.

Word got around to the cast and crew of the show, which stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Selena Meyer, a former US senator who winds up becoming president.

Veep's executive producer David Mandel also issued "an official statement on behalf of Veep and the United States," taking full responsibility for sending Australia's democracy into a minor crisis.

"We would like to apologize to Australia, our key ally in the Asia-Pacific region, for writing something that would cause bodily harm to your people," he told BuzzFeed.

For his part, Timothy Simons—who plays Jonah, the character that apparently directly caused Perrett's injury—said he'd do what he could to keep the politician out of harm's way.

Mandel added that Perrett's mishap might serve as inspiration for Veep later on.

"You realize if I wrote that Selina Meyer was laughing, got caught choking on sushi, and hit her head, people would say, 'Yeah right, that doesn't happen, you can't do that,'" he told BuzzFeed. "It really does seem like something in the show, so I guess I'll have to wait a year now to use it."