Unlike other improv troupes, Improv Everywhere doesn't perform audience suggestions on a stage. Instead, NYC is the group's stage and its unsuspecting citizens are their audience — and prank victims.
But their latest prank has outdone all previous antics by defying space and time — well, kind of.
The prank begins in a subway car with a man asking for donations for a time machine. At the next stop, his "future" self enters and warns him, as well as the random commuters, against funding his invention. "Wait! Stop! Ladies and gentlemen, please do not give this man any money!" he says. "Do not let him finish his time machine! Our life turns out to be terrible once you start time traveling!"
From there, the prank escalates as more and more "future" selves hop on to confront their "past" selves and persuade them to stop the ill-fated creation.
Though they were convinced against time travel to the future, these pranksters are still #twinning in the present.
This isn't the first time Improv Everywhere has used twins to pull off their elaborate pranks. In 2008, they did their "Human Mirror" prank, sitting 15 pairs of identical and identically dressed twins across from each other in a subway car. In 2013, they used two pairs of twins for a Back to the Future-themed prank. This latest prank combined these two concepts into one unforgettable scene.
Improv Everywhere performed the bit five times throughout the day, all on the N train. Though most of the twins had some acting experience, not all of them did — and none on a live subway car. They rehearsed in a mock subway car at a studio before going on (and off) the rails.
"Unlike other subway pranks that might get an entire car involved, this one was hyper-focused on the people who happened to be sitting and standing around our playing space," Charlie Todd, the prank's mastermind, wrote on Improv Everywhere's website. "I love creating something so ridiculously elaborate (four pairs of twins, perfectly timed staggered entrances on the train) for the benefit of so few people."
While the original prank was performed for about 10 people, the hilarious video is sure to delight audiences around the world.