Probably one of the most popular forms of storytelling on TV right now is supernatural stuff. But that has nothing to do with this story. However, the second most popular storytelling device as of late is being meta. You know – things like when Nathan Fillion/Richard Castle talks about how cool Joss Whedon’s space show was on Castle. (RIP Firefly.) I love it. Meta is tongue in cheek fun when it is done right. And that is often the case on shows where people play themselves.
And a great example of that is the Showtime series, Episodes.
Of course, if you are a fan of Friends, it seems like a no-brainer to give this show a try. Matt LeBlanc as a not-quite Matt LeBlanc is a lot of fun! But maybe you didn’t watch because you don’t have Showtime (cable is expensive, y’all!). Well, you don’t need to worry about catching up. The first two seasons have been released in a combo pack DVD ready for you to take in. And it won’t take long. There are only 16 episodes of Episodes.
In case you don’t know, the series is about a married British couple, Beverly and Sean Lincoln (Tamsin Greig and Stephen Mangan) who have been very successful over in the UK with their television series, so they come to Hollywood to bring the series to the US where they are sort of forced to have Matt LeBlanc be the star. Kind of like the show Friends. Without the forcing of LeBlanc. Meta in Meta. Good times. Of course this LeBlanc isn’t the LeBlanc we’ve come to know over the years – like Neil Patrick Harris or James Van Der Beek in their portrayals of themselves, LeBlanc is a bit of a cad, although just as charming as you would expect.
The show was created by David Crane who, guess what, also created Friends. Wooo Meta! Rounding out the great cast of character actors: John Pankow (Mad About You), Kathleen Rose Perkins and one of my favorites, Mircea Monroe (Hart of Dixie).
While the DVD is short of extras – just written biographies of the main cast and a photo gallery – the show is really worth checking out.
Episodes Seasons One and Two comes out on DVD January 8th and will be available wherever DVDs are sold. AKA, the internet.
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DVD sent courtesy of Showtime