Eastbound & Down
Look at you, with your job, your money. You’ve probably got one of those nifty Sky+ things at home. But, the big question is: are you using it correctly? A hunch suggests that you’ve probably got Peep Show set to record every week, then Never Mind the Buzzcocks – last week featuring James Cordon on high-pitched-laughing-and-clapping duty – and perhaps Jools Holland/X Factor, just to prove that you don’t just like music, you care about music. You might even have the sequel to Match of The Day, Match of The Day 2. Well done. But have you seen Eastbound & Down yet? It’s only one show in, but we’ve already decided to pin the Interestment colours on it, by declaring it our new favourite sitcom. It’s the brainchild of Will Ferrell and a few of his honchos, and follows a retired baseball player (Danny McBride) through the trials and tribulations of life away from the white hot glare of the spotlight. With hilarious results etc… In some ways, it’s a bit like My Name is Earl, only funny. Plus, while we’re in the mood to grease our own egos, we must point out that we first alerted site readers to the show back in the sunny days of June 2009 – along with the wonderful In Treatment that started this week. So, first job when you get home: pop the kettle on and quickly sort out your Sky Planner. There is much to be enthusiastic about on television. Here’s a clip from the show, featuring naughty swear words…
Bush and Bush
Barack Obama, for those who don’t know, is the guy making everything better in the world. He’s succeeded Mr Thicky as President of America, and now everyone feels positive and ready to put the entire planet back on track. All the while we’re in the midst of an economic meltdown, everyone’s stabbing each other in the stomach, and kids are trading STD’s at school like they were football stickers, and this were Mexico 86. It’s a strange time, but there is hope for a better future. Of course, we’re not getting too carried away over at Interestment. A black President is a great sign of better things to come, but what we’re really holding out for is the first mixed race, half Lithuanian/half Jamaican/half Liverpudlian, king. Until that day, until that day… Anyway, feeling buoyant and alive, we decided to get Barack Obama a gift, so we put leather jackets on, rode motorbikes, and discussed options, before it boiled down to a toss up between some Barocca and a nice balm, or a clip of Will Ferrell pretending to be George W Bush. In the end we got him both. Thank goodness for Barack Obama!
Step Brothers Bloopers
The shouty American comic actor Will Ferrell turns a very impressive 41 today, and he’s doing pretty well for himself by all accounts. He’s made everyone laugh with a hilarious Neil Diamond impression, he was brilliant in Anchorman and Old School. But the real jewel in his crown is Step Brothers – Interestment’s favourite film of 2008, an underrated gem. Hence, we thought it best to get him a gift, so we all made hats from bits of randomly coloured tissue paper and skipped around town singing ideas to one another, until it boiled down to a toss up between a mug of water mixed with fruit juice, or a behind-the-scenes glimpse at Step Brothers. In the end we got him both. Happy Birthday Will Ferrell!
One could be the next Friends
When it first began, Friends was a straight-faced drama serial about a male actor (Joey) on a slow descent into male prostitution, crack cocaine use, and eventually death. It was to be narrated by his widow hooker girlfriend (Monica), with recurring cast members including a dark-eyed drug dealer known only as Phoebs, and a cigar munching heavy called Roz (pronounced Ross). But then, in an intriguing twist of fate, Matthew Perry was cast as a paranoid pipe smoking street urchin with HIV, and the course of the show was changed forever thanks to his totally accidental comedy timing, which seemed to go down well with the live studio audience. The writers assembled on the floor, and seconds later Friends was transformed into a comedy show about six neighbours all passively-aggressively attempting to have sex with one another. A legend was born. Great times, great great times.
Since Friends, we have been forever on the lookout for the next great TV show, so it was with total and complete joy that we heard from friend of the site and comedy expert, Peter, who thought he’d drop by to point out some new shows on the horizon that we should be looking out for. He had these recommendations…
1. Parks and Recreation
This is a new comedy from two of the Emmy winning writers of the US version of The Office. It stars the great, yet quite tiny, Amy Poehler who recently quit SNL. Here, she is playing the role of a small town official called Leslie Knope. It’s got the same mockumentary style as The Office, and a really good cast as well. The first season was only six episodes, but the word on the street is that they’ve been renewed for a second season.
2. Eastbound and Down
A comedy starring Danny McBride (a Judd Apatow favourite), Will Ferrell and Adam McKay are behind the show, and it totally rocks. It’s about a professional baseball player who becomes a teacher at his old school, with hilarious results etc. It’s good stuff. It’s been renewed for another season.
3. Better off Ted
I’ve heard lots of good things about Better Off Ted, but I haven’t seen it yet. It’s an office-based comedy, and the creator is one of the guys behind (the now cancelled) My Name Is Earl. Oh, and Portia de Rossi is in it…
4. Boldly Going Nowhere
Everyone should be totally looking forward to Boldly Going Nowhere – the new comedy from the guys behind It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (above). There’s no air date as yet, but there is a leaked script for the pilot floating about the internet…
5. The Unusuals
On the drama front, there’s a new show called The Unusuals, but it has already been cancelled. Still, apparently it’s worth a shot – it had a pretty good cast and was billed as a police detective comedy/drama, which is always a winning combo. Just look at Police Squad.
6. Breaking Bad
You must see the second season of Breaking Bad. The first season was absolutely brilliant and won Bryan Cranston (Malcolm‘s dad in Malcolm in The Middle) an Emmy. A struggling high school teacher decides to produce and deal crack to support his family – what’s not to like!
7. Children’s Hospital
Frustratingly, it’s damn near impossible to find Rob Corddry’s Children’s Hospital comedy anywhere online. It was a webseries shown on the WB networks site… but only to those who live in America. Still, it’s worth looking out for if you can find it. Above is a little interview about the show.
PLUS, friend of the site, Mikey, insists that we should all be watching this:
8. In Treatment
If you’ve been waiting for a drama about psychotherapy, then here it is, and it’s absolutely great. Each episode centres on a therapy session, and there are something like forty episodes in the first series alone. Lots to catch up on, then.