Zac Oyama

Gorgug Thistlespring in 'Fantasy High'

Sara Belcher - Author

Jun. 13 2024, Published 3:45 p.m. ET

Zac Oyama
Source: Dropout

Gorgug Thistlespring had some of the biggest roadblocks in Junior Year of Fantasy High, the popular Dungeons & Dragons show on Dropout. The half-orc barbarian, played by Zac Oyama, had to do four years of schoolwork in one year, face public humiliation when his parents' "gadgets" ran wild in public, and deal with the shame of being run into the bleachers during Owlbears tryouts by none other than Mary Ann Skuttle.

Following the season's conclusion, Zac took the time to talk with Distractify about Fantasy High, sharing his backup character who never made it to the table and his favorite caffeine sources for a day of filming.

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If you had to get a tattoo right now, what would it be?

ZO: I'm a person with no tattoos, so this is a tough question. I've thought about getting the logo of my dad My dad teaches karate and I've thought about getting the logo, it's this kind of cool eagle with a fist in the middle tattooed to me, but the funny thing about that is, he would absolutely hate that I did that. And so that has kind of stalled this out into a thing I'm probably never gonna get.

If you could have any superpower, what would you pick?

ZO: I think I would be able to fly. I went skydiving in one of those tubes at [Universal] CityWalk, where it's the indoor fan that you just kind of float over. It's humiliating, but you also feel very free. And sometimes I'll have dreams where I'm flying. And so I think it's only a matter of time before I take to the skies.

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Lou Wilson, Ally Beardsley, Brian Murphy, Brennan Lee Mulligan, Zac Oyama, Siobhan Thompson, Emily Axford
Source: Dropout

What's your go-to karaoke song?

ZO: I have a bad range, and I can't sing very high. But I also there are not really that many songs I can sing. So by that virtue, I end up singing weird country songs that I don't even like and there's this country song that I saw on American Idol. It's "Your Man" by Josh Turner, and it's this weird deep voice, it's like, 'Baby lock them doors and turn the lights down low.' I don't know why, but that is what I think of when I panic in a karaoke room and have to sing a song.

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What are your top three game-day necessities?

ZO: It's kind of hard because you're not really given that much downtime to eat. We've all seen Brennan snack on camera, and I like to keep it kind of similar to him — I keep it sort of savory. I like a meat and cheese board-esque thing. I also get so yawn-y, like I can't stop yawning, and so I usually have a Celsius and a half, and a cup of coffee or something like that over the course of the day. I'm just throttled on caffeine by the end. [I'm] drinking a cup of coffee at like 11 p.m. knowing 'Oh, this isn't gonna be good later.'

Once I've overdone it on caffeine, I'll just drink hot water like a robot or something. I don't know why that is, I don't even really like tea that much, but I'm comforted by it. If you're reading this, know that I deeply regret saying that.

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Tell us about the first Dungeons & Dragons campaign you ever played.

ZO: My first D&D campaign was a home game that Brennan ran with many of the intrepid heroes plus two of our other friends John Wolf Travis Elwood and I played a monk named Zyarf and he was a human guy, kind of a surf bro dude who ended up becoming a werewolf, and so he's this werewolf monk. He was able to overcome the werewolf rage-esque energy. So I'm this awesome werewolf monk and this home game that we still sometimes talk about scheduling.

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If you could switch lives with any celebrity for a day, who would it be?

ZO: I think I would be Tom Cruise. But I would have to know how to do his action scenes, and then just see what happens while you're doing a Mission Impossible action scene. I think that would be thrilling. I'd be scared that's how I die and no one knows that that's how my brain got stuck in Tom Cruise's body and then Tom Cruise's me for the rest of time and no one believes him and everyone thinks Zac got really weird.

If you could start a rumor about yourself, what would it be?

ZO: Ah, gosh, can you believe that Zac can run a mile in four minutes and 50 seconds? I would love for someone else to think that about me, that I can kill a one-mile run. I just never show anyone.

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Where do you look for inspiration when creating a new character?

ZO: We've made so many characters at this point. I like to think of a character flaw that I feel is fun to explore. Another way is that sometimes people claim certain territory [when we create a season] and if there's room for something within a class that fits within a group of personalities — like what's missing from this collective of personalities? I'll see if something speaks to me in that territory.

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It's almost like when you write, it's harder to confront a blank page than say, an exercise where someone has given you some limitations. I think those limitations often breed creativity, especially when you're coming up with a character.

Is there a D&D class you haven't played yet that you really want to?

ZO: I would love to play a druid. I've never played a druid. I think it would be fun.

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Do you have any superstitions about your dice? If so, please share.

ZO: I think that it is true that some of them are all hot and some of them get cold, and when something turns in a dice. You just gotta bench it. Like that dice needs to cool off, it's just really in its head and it doesn't know how to roll so you got to give it time. I don't throw them away or anything. But yeah, I think you've got to bench your dice when something starts rolling bad.

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Who is your favorite NPC in 'Fantasy High'?

ZO: I think my favorite one in Fantasy High has to be Gilear. There's just something really funny to me about a deeply pathetic man who bad things happen to kind of constantly. A sad sack is, I think, the funniest type of character. He's endlessly funny to me. And Brennan plays him so perfectly.

If you had to return to 'Fantasy High' as a character other than the Bad Kids, who would you play?

ZO: When I look at the characters that already exist in the world, I think Jawbone is a really fun character. He'd be fun to play. Like, you know, like I said, I was on werewolf in a home game. If I'm creating a new PC of my own, the backup character I had, however long ago, and the concept was never really fleshed out, was a cavalier, it's a type of fighter where you're riding a horse, but it's like a kid on a BMX bike. I thought that was really fun to be like a weird, gnarly, extreme kid with bad grades. So probably that.

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Gilear and Jawbone from 'Fantasy High: Junior Year'
Source: Cait May for Dropout

Gilear and Jawbone from 'Fantasy High: Junior Year'

What is your No. 1 distraction?

ZO: My number one distraction, by far is that I'm deeply obsessed with video games and I have a hard time not. I'll be like I'm not playing video games right now, and then I'll just watch people play on Twitch. And like, oh, this is the same thing. I'm wasting time in the same way. But they're fun.

I, unfortunately, am hooked on battle royale kind of games, like I really love Apex Legends, I love Fortnite. I love that Victory Royale. I mean, is there anything as good in this one life we have? People don't call each other and talk on the phone for an hour anymore, but you can play a video game for two hours and be on a voice call with people. I think that ends up being a fun way to spend time with friends.

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