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The Comeback: Kudrow's back


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#1

osculate

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Posted May 24, 2005 @ 11:47 AM

Did a search but didn't see a thread dedicated to Lisa Kudrow's new show. Kinda surprises me that no one is talking about it yet. I saw a commercial for it on HBO the other night and I think the series looks promising. According to HBO's website, there is a reality show within the show factor, which could be interesting. Any TWOPers get an early scoop or see a screening? In this NY Times article (subscription required) that Lisa Kudrow came up with the idea when she was in The Groundlings.

#2

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Posted May 24, 2005 @ 12:49 PM

At first I thought the plot of this show sounded a lot like the idea that Larry David and Julia Louis Dreyfus (and first Jason Alexander) pitched to the networks in season 2 of Curb Your Enthusiasm. But I just read the synopsis on the HBO page - sounds pretty funny.

HBO - The Comeback

#3

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Posted May 26, 2005 @ 2:37 PM

yeah, I think it took a lot of guts for Lisa Kudrow to take on this role. I mean, if she doesn't play her career right, she could end up a similar styled B-Lister from last decade's hot show.

But personally I think Kudrow is too smart for that. Which is why I'm especially interested in seeing whatever project she's chosen as first major post-Friends show. I've always been impressed with her and the way she carries herself. Did anyone see her on Ellen today?

#4

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Posted May 26, 2005 @ 3:12 PM

I like everything about the show except that Michael Patrick King is a writer. I think he enjoys ridiculing women just a LITTLE too much.

ETA: Thanks, osculate. I didn't know that about MPK!

Edited by hoodooznoodoooz, Jun 6, 2005 @ 2:55 PM.


#5

cjl

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Posted May 26, 2005 @ 3:22 PM

I hope they show clips from Valerie's earlier TV success--maybe it was a laugh track happy three-camera sitcom about a group of six....acquaintances who hang out at a coffee shop in San Francisco.

#6

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Posted Jun 2, 2005 @ 1:45 PM

hee, cjl that would be funny. I bet they will - I saw a clip from the show and she was showing off her "I'm It" wall. It looked pretty funny. Maybe they'll do a flashback or something.

I never got the impression that Michael Patrick King likes to ridicule women. I read an article in Entertainment Weekly where he talks about his obsession with reality tv - he kind of sounded like a funny guy to hang out with.

Eitherway, I'm definitely watching on Sunday.

#7

pakelihe

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Posted Jun 5, 2005 @ 9:16 PM

Wow! That was pretty damn funny. And by pretty damn, I mean I laughed out loud over a dozen times. The whole re-writing the pilot with the smell of pot scene has got to have happened so many times in the past. It would explain so very, very many crappy four-camera sitcoms.

While the whole leaking pipe "It" wall thing was somewhat predictable, I really liked the execution. I almost felt bad for Lisa/Valerie, until I remember it wasn't a Friends wall. And thanks for the somewhat gratuitous nudity, language, and rude gestures, HBO. It made the whole thing seem just a bit more "reality".

Edited by pakelihe, Jun 5, 2005 @ 9:16 PM.


#8

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Posted Jun 5, 2005 @ 9:16 PM

Did anyone else watch this? I found it quite funny actually. I forgot how likeable Lisa Kudrow can be. I'm a big fan of Curb Your Enthusiasm and I found this is as good if not better. Hopefully the rest of the season will live up. Definitely better than Fat Actress, although I kind of like that show as well. At least I don't feel dirty for liking this one.

"Note to self...I don't wanna SEE that!" Hee.

#9

JuliusCaeser

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Posted Jun 5, 2005 @ 9:28 PM

While I hate "Friends", Lisa Kudrow was the funniest one out of that bunch. But I did not laugh once during this show, I think that this mockumentary reality show format is getting a little stale, its like "look at me i'm a star, but i'm willing to make fun of myself" it just isnt as interesting anymore. I think that they could make it funny, I did like the backstage sitcom stuff, but it was just kinda amusing, thats all.

Its nothing compared to "Curb" or "Larry Sanders" BTW

Edited by JuliusCaeser, Jun 5, 2005 @ 9:29 PM.


#10

y2terp

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Posted Jun 5, 2005 @ 9:34 PM

Gosh, what a convoluted mess. My TiVo cut out after Valerie got into the car accident, but I doubt I missed anything. I laughed a couple times, but the concept of the show was a lot funnier than the actual product.

#11

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Posted Jun 5, 2005 @ 10:19 PM

Turn Phoebe into a horrible phony, put her in one self-conscious situation after another, and then push her to the brink of tears.


Note to HBO: I DON'T WANT TO SEE THAT!


(I'll watch Entourage again next week, but not this bizarro-Phoebe.)

#12

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Posted Jun 5, 2005 @ 11:24 PM

My cousin, a comedienne and a long-time friend of Lisa Kudrow's, is writing for this show. For her sake I hope it does well...unfortunately I don't have access to HBO. Le sigh.

#13

GuyInGA

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 6:42 AM

A complete and utter failure on every level possible. I know this show is getting compared to "Curb," but CYE is ten times better it's not even funny. It shouldn't take any real effort to follow what is going on and all the 'multiple takes' and 'verite' stuff I found distracting and annoying.

I almost think it would be interesting if Lisa Kudrow's character didn't know she had a camera on her but acted like she did.

#14

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 8:53 AM

[small voice]...I liked it, so did my husband. I guess we're strange....[/small voice]

#15

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 8:56 AM

FANTASTIC!
I loved it, and laughed out lous so many times, especially when Valerie was talking to the camera after she got the role in Room And Bored, and she was saying "I got it", but the AD of the reality show kept telling her to be more enthusiastic and show more happiness.
It was priceless when Val,after a couple of takes that still didn't satisfy the AD,finally went all over the top with an exagerated "I GOT IT!!!!!!" and then said "See, that was a crazy person, we can't use that!"

It was freaking hilarious and sad too...I can't wait to see more of this and I hope it's a hit...

#16

pha1226

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 9:06 AM

Add one to the "hated it" side...lame and annoying as hell!

#17

Mary Jane Fields

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 10:03 AM

I was never to sit through an episode of Friends, so I watched The Comeback with no expectations and I'm surprised at how much I liked it. I think it speaks to several issues--the plight and fragile egos of has-been/aging actresses, the development and writing of formulaic sitcoms by committee instead of by creative people, the obsession with youth and sexuality, the invasiveness and dehumanization of reality television.

Or I could be reading waaaaay too much into it.

When Valerie was told she's not it anymore, I thought the hurt and humiliation expressed on Lisa Kudrow's face and in her eyes was totally believable. That could very well be Kudrow and her Friends co-stars for real in a few years.

This may not be a perfect show but how many are? At least it's trying address television and pop culture from a different angle. Personally, I'd always rather watch a show that tries something new and fails than the same old same old. Someone else will come along and get it right but someone has to be the first to try.

#18

drivr8

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 10:37 AM

For everyone who hated it, let me warn you not to watch Fat Actress (if you haven't already done so). Because, if you hated The Comeback, you may actually want to hunt Kirstie Alley down with a shotgun.

That being said, I, like Mary Jane, rarely if ever watched Friends, and had a barely passing interest in Kudrow. I don't know if that made a difference in my opinion of the show, but as a whole, I enjoyed it. It actually was far more endearing then I'd thought, kind of a like a kindler, gentler (and not yet as funny) Curb.

But it did have it's moments, which would mean it had one more moment then that hideous and vile train wreck of a "reality" comedy piece-o-garbage Fat Actress.

Oops, did I say that?

I found Kudrow's Cherish to be likeable and sad. There were definitely layers to her character, which is a bit refreshing.

Edited by drivr8, Jun 6, 2005 @ 10:36 AM.


#19

IseutLaBrune

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 10:53 AM

Wow, there's a wide range of responses here!

I think it has potential, but I didn't really like the show enough to stick around and see it develop. I love Lisa Kudrow, but the show just wasn't funny enough. I felt like they used Ricky Gervais' character from The Office (UK) as a model for Valerie, a character who is usually an oblivious jerk that tries too hard, but that also shows some pathos from time to time. They overdid the pathos in The Comeback, though, to the point that I just found it depressing. Stop making Phoebe cry!

I did laugh at the auntie running suit, and the way she kept cutting off other people like her hairdresser from talking about themselves when she was able to focus on something that related to her again. I know a few (too many!) people who do that.

#20

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 11:21 AM

I think it speaks to several issues--the plight and fragile egos of has-been/aging actresses, the development and writing of formulaic sitcoms by committee instead of by creative people, the obsession with youth and sexuality, the invasiveness and dehumanization of reality television.

I agree. Although there were funny parts, I also found it kind of sad. 'Valerie' was hired for a show pitched to her as one that starred four women. Then it gets changed and she gets relegated to the wacky aunt who lives upstairs. (& I thought they were going to write her out of the show entirely when they called her into the room -- so I guess in retrospect, she got lucky) It was sad but realistic for network television. They want to focus on the early-20s, and keep the older actors in small character roles or force them out altogether.

"Do you have a Juicy ass?" --- ooh, burn!

#21

pakelihe

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 12:04 PM

I'm not all that surprised that the TWoP opinions are varying so much. I've seen a couple of wildly different reviews basically saying "really funny" and "not at all funny". I loved it, and find Curb to be "meh", and Entourage to be painfully un-funny. Different strokes for different folks are a good thing!

#22

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 12:10 PM

I found it unwatchable. Not even a smile. I found it to be in the same unwatchable league as Fat Actress. I guess it's just Entourage for me on Sunday nights.

It didn't help I saw 20 min of one of the worst movies of all time - Marci X with Lisa Kudrow earlier in the day on Showtime.

#23

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 12:24 PM

What did happen after the car accident, specifically when the man yelled at her throught the window saying she drove right into him? My recording cut out at that point as well. Note to HBO: you have no ads on your network. Stop running promos for your other shows that cause your shows to begin at 9:32 and therefore not end on time.

Lisa Kudrow's eyes look so strange with the blue contacts in. I wish she would go back to her natural eye color (see first season or two of Friends for proof).

#24

wendydunn

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 12:30 PM

I thought it was a near-copy of Fat Actress, except it's about a washed up actress instead of a fat one.

I thought both shows were funny, but the novelty has worn off that weird shaky camera work, we all know we're "inside a joke," talk-to-the camera style.

#25

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 12:37 PM

When Valerie was told she's not it anymore, I thought the hurt and humiliation expressed on Lisa Kudrow's face and in her eyes was totally believable.


I was about ready to give up on the show until that moment. I thought a lot of it was pretty flat, but if they can continue to really bring that kind of heart to the character, I'll keep watching.

#26

sharina

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 12:51 PM

What did happen after the car accident, specifically when the man yelled at her throught the window saying she drove right into him?

He was just yelling and he told to turn off the cameras. She said she can't (which was kind of funny....must be the delivery).

Then she went home to find that her wall fo pictures was left on the floor and got water damaged. Then her agent called to tell her that the pilot got picked up (shocking!).

The show is okay but I can see the concept getting old.

#27

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 1:26 PM

I enjoyed it. We're already seeing some depth to the character and I'm getting a big kick out of all the "raw reality footage" that never makes it to TV anyway. Like the fight about turning off the water in the leaky bathroom and the pushy director of the reality tv cameras. "Complete this sentence, 'I am feeling blank.'" Ugh, I would die.

There were several points when I really felt for the character - despite her fragile, large ego. Namely when she was recast and then got the lecture from James Burrows (hello cool cameo!). And seeing her IT wall in shambles after having such a shitty day.

I'll definitely watch next week. This feels like one of those shows that starts out good and has you totally hooked by episode 3.

Oh and did anyone else recognize the wardrobe guy as the assistant from Zoolander?

#28

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 1:35 PM

I loved it. I'll definitely be watching it again.

Glad to see that Kim Fields is still cute.

#29

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 1:35 PM

I liked it a lot. I'll definitely be watching again.

It seems like part of the reason a lot of you don't like it is because Fat Actress already burned you out on the format. I've never seen Fat Actress so I thought Comeback was really original.

#30

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Posted Jun 6, 2005 @ 2:04 PM

I was so bored that I quit watching half way through. I didn't laugh once. I was amused when Tootie and the actress from Taxi gave the camera the finger. I don't expect a comedy to make me laugh every second, but I should at least laugh once in 15 minutes.