Michael Ian Black (born Michael Ian Schwartz) is an American comedian, actor, writer, and director. He has starred in several TV comedy series, including The State, Viva Variety, Stella, Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp, Michael & Michael Have Issues, and Another Period. In the late 1990s to early 2000s, he was the puppeteer and voice actor for the Pets.com sock puppet dog. He also appeared on Celebrity Poker Showdown several times. He released his first children's book, Chicken Cheeks, in 2009, and has since released six more, in addition to four books for adults.