I appreciate you giving it another chance, and I’m sorry it didn’t click with you. I agree with Rock8man: What I really enjoy about the show is that, more than a typical sitcom, it plays a lot with time and perception. In the episode you mentioned (“The Girl with Two Breasts”), it’s not that they were explaining the jokes, but that they were different jokes when seen from the other perspective, and not the ones you were expecting. I enjoy how the show builds on those slowly, until the ending ties things together in a way that doesn’t seem forced.
Most of all though, I appreciate that it’s not a typical sitcom. Split-screen, time loops, missed perceptions, abrupt and unexplained cuts…they all seem (at least to me) like new ways of telling the story. It reminds me of Memento in a way, and maybe that’s a simplistic comparison, but it’s the best analogy I can come up with. Sure, in many ways it’s a typical sitcom, but Memento is also a pretty straightforward crime drama if you take out the reversing mechanic. It’s a comedy put together by someone who said, “Okay, this is how sitcoms have been done over the last fifty years; what can we do differently?”
I was thinking of other examples to cite, but I don’t want to ruin the jokes for someone who is interested in the show. However, I also enjoyed another great Jeff episode, “The Man with Two Legs,” about what happens when he accidentally tells a beautiful woman that he has a wooden leg.
Thanks DennyA! Yes, my kids also enjoy listening to it too (with the same omitted songs). They still get a thrill out of hearing my name, although admittedly, they tend to hear it more on a daily basis.
I absolutely agree with Xtien on one thing at the very least. I’m done with laugh tracks. Almost all of my favorite shows of late are laugh track free. I can only think of one sitcom I still enjoy that has a laugh track, How I Met Your Mother, and even then I find the inclusion of the canned laughter to be incredibly grating. It’s amazing how shows as loony as 30 Rock or even Scrubs feel more grounded in reality than something like Friends or Everybody Loves Raymond just because there’s no laugh track interrupting the flow of the jokes.
I want to find out more about this live Coulton cd. Is this it? I only know a couple of his songs but I immediately fell for that guy and I’d love to hear more of his stuff (especially if it means supporting someone from here).
I was thinking more about the show this morning and it occurs to me that the ideal way for me to get introduced to a show like this would be the way Rock8man describes introducing his friends to it. Bringing the dvd over and watching it together. I think watching it with a group of friends would have warmed me up to it more.
Thanks for the explanation about what the show is doing in the perspective shift. With the language shift in particular, I think I was more in the mind of getting something like Eddie Izzard’s encore at the end of “Dress to Kill” where he does Speed-uh in French. I was getting the jokes from the body language, and so I felt kind of cheated.
RedHerb is right about the final joke, of course. I just don’t find the callback about the more homely friend’s small breasts to be worth it. What’s her line? “Men get disappointed when the flat-chested friend shows up.” I love that line!
I find this most intriguing…
…because I think I just shunted “Coupling” into my “Friends” mind-space when I was watching it last night. That image of the guys sitting at a table in the middle of their crowded bar, holding forth and conspiring. That just brought to mind the coffee shop in “Friends”. I had to watch every episode of that show because it was my wife’s favorite and we only had one tv at the time. Let’s just say it grew to wear on me. So without thinking I viewed “Coupling” in that light, and it probably colored my reaction to the show.
Yes, that is the live Coulton CD and DVD. Definitely worth picking up! You can also download a bunch of his songs for free on his website.
I appreciate the sentiment, although you wouldn’t be “supporting me” in any financial sense. I don’t want you to get your hopes up about my contribution to the show, which was largely incidental…ah, you’ll see for yourself. It’s a minor part of the show, but was very significant to me. I’m actually surprised at how often I have been recognized because of it.
I liked the epilogue: “Yeah, he went looking for her at the airport, and he got arrested! All he did was run around the El Al terminal, shouting her name.”
When Coupling came to America, it was promoted as, “Like Friends…with sex!” The show’s creators were very upset by the comparison, although I can see the similarities.
Based on the description, I think it was “Remember This.” I’m not sure if I would recommend jumping straight into Season Three though; a lot of the humor and sentimentality comes from seeing the characters progress over time. There are only a handful of episodes per season, so it shouldn’t be too painful to watch them in order; however, I can see why you wouldn’t want to commit to that.
Agreed. Dingus, if you watch the show, watch it in order. Or at least roughly in order in terms of the seasons. Knowing the characters and what they’ve gone through in earlier seasons adds a lot to the show.
Also Andy: bringing out the Jane quote huh? :) It’s weird how she’s the most quotable person on the show, but at the same time the least funny character. At least for me. I guess because more of her jokes are one-offs and don’t involve a lot of the plot that was taking place around it.
Hey wow, if this is an option for you, then that absolutely would have been the way to go. I’m hesitant to bring that option up sometimes because it’s not really an option for a some people. Like me, for example, ever since I moved away from Seattle. The couple of friends I have here have radically different tastes from me when it comes to entertainment.
They like Armageddon and Transformers 2. Enough said. I mean, I like hanging out with them, but it is super-tough to find a movie or TV show that all 3 of us will enjoy.
The rant about couch pillows in Coupling will stay with me for the rest of my life. It really distills a life/gender issue to it’s stark core.
I highly recommend getting it and also watching the concert DVD. I rarely get anything out of canned concerts but this one really engaged me. And Andy’s bit is great, I’d actually recommend watching the DVD before listening to the CD so it will be more of a surprise.
The episode of Coupling that I liked most was the one where Jeff falls for a girl on the train having at first seen nothing of her but her shapely leg, and then in his discombobulation at actually meeting her goes on to invent some crazy story about having two prosthetic legs himself.
You made me dig up my box set, and review one of Steve’s monologues about being men. This one is at the end of “Inferno” from first season.
Steve again has done something embaressing, are are painting himself more and more into a corner, until he bursts into a rant - one of the “Because we are men”-rants.
Sadly this episode is even more censored than usually when viewed on BBC World here in Europe. The long version is 29m19s and the BBC World was 4-5 minutes shorter with a lot of beeps. It really ruins the jokes, and are the reason I finally mail-ordered the boxed set.
Are there any difference between the Netflix and the BBC America version?
(None of which are available here in Europe)