The basis of Episodes is that it is a show within a show, very much like 30 Rock. The major difference is that Episodes deals more with the meddling issues of higher ups in producing TV shows and the fish out of water aspects of the British in the USA, season 3 continues on this path.
The prior two seasons dealt with the disaster that is British TV shows being ported over to America, they took a sophisticated comedy about a school and turned it into a show about an Ice Hockey coach, and the third season follows the same sort of pattern. I have always wondered why American’s can’t accept TV shows which have been produced in a different country unless they are period pieces. What makes it worse is that so often they take successful shows and bastardise them and that is exactly what Episodes is parodying. I’m not even sure American’s are aware that this really happens either, but trust me when I say a hell of a lot of your favourite classic TV shows are British ports.
I like Episodes it’s a good idea, has a good cast and it’s pretty funny but this was probably the worst season they’ve done so far. The best part of the show is the relationship of Matt LeBlanc, Sean and Beverly but season 3 seemed to keep going back to showing us what the higher ups were doing. Merc is replaced by Caster but I couldn’t help but ask myself why we were being subjected to this. Carol has went from being from a side-line player to one of the most important parts of the show and it sort of feels like the writers have forgotten what the show is meant to be about, it shouldn’t be about two executives fucking a lot.
As I have alluded to Matt LeBlanc is exceptional as he effortlessly plays a fictionalised version of himself. I did disagree with the whole put him in a relationship sort of thing because I feel LeBlanc is at his best when he’s playing a bit of a sleezeball with little to no morals. We don’t really need to see the character grow because people like Matt LeBlanc regardless of how much of a prick he plays on screen will always be heavily liked by the audience because he’s a hard guy to not like, all he needs to do is flash a smile and all is forgiven.
I am struggling to think of many comedies which are currently out right now which are as smart or well written as Episodes, and although I said that I felt this was the weakest of the first three seasons, it is still better than the best of many other so called comedies. Episodes is further proof that all the best comedies currently being produced in the USA (although co-commissioned by the BBC) are either on cable or online subscription services. I also like that Episodes is following the current trend for American comedies of actually having a proper story arc rather than seemingly being one random episode after another.
I do like Episodes and it is a shame that it doesn’t get the viewing figures it deserves, but with Matt LeBlanc and Emmy nominations aplenty it will keep on chugging along. I haven’t specifically talked about anything that happens in the season but similar to how season 2 ended they finished season 3 in a manner which sets up season 4 very well and continues the misery of everyone involved. The sadist in me actually thinks that the way in which season 3 ends is perfect in so many different ways for this show because life rarely has a clean cut ending and TV almost never reflects that.
So what did you think of Episodes season 3? Are you wondering why Matt LeBlanc looks so cuddly? Or why Stephen Mangan has such lovely hair? Well leave a comment and allow the world to know. Plus don’t forget that you can show your love and support by following the Facebook and Twitter pages because why the fuck not?