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Year: 2011, 2012
Genre: Comedy, TV series
Country: United States
Starring: Matt LeBlanc, Stephen Mangan, Tamsin Greig, John Pankow, Mircea Monroe, Kathleen Rose Perkins, Richard Griffiths
Creators: David Crane (Friends), Jeffrey Klarik (Mad About You)
DVD distributor: Paramount Home Entertainment
Episodes is a smart show from smart writers about smart people who once wrote a smart show and now have to write a dumb show for dumb people. It stars Matt LeBlanc as himself, the guy who used to play Joey on Friends, trying to get away from his Joey character while playing a character who is almost exactly like Joey.
Got that? Alright, here’s a more concise version – Episodes is good. It’s smart. And Matt LeBlanc, playing himself, is very good at spoofing his own image while the show spoofs the whole television industry. Season One of Episodes hits DVD June 12th from Paramount Home Entertainment, and it’s well worth checking out if you haven’t yet seen it on Showtime.
A couple of British writers are recruited by a maniac TV executive to bring their successful show Lyman’s Boys over to America. Once in the States, the network makes change after change, turning a smart and successful British show starring the great Richard Griffiths into a stupid, painful pile of garbage starring Matt LeBlanc.
Over the course of the first season Sean and Beverly, the British writers, have to come to grips with life in LA, they have to deal with stupid producers and stupider Matt LeBlanc, and their relationship comes unraveled as their show goes down the tubes. At the end of the season it appears the show will get dropped by the network because it’s terrible. But this is TV and that doesn’t seem to matter, because like 2 Broke Girls and Whitney, it gets picked up.
Of course, that happens so that we’ll get a second season of Episodes. Which remains a very good, very funny show. So, by all logic, that means it should be canceled pretty soon. And if that happened, I don’t know if it would be disappointing, ironic, or absolutely perfect.