Episodes - In The Press
Main News Stories About 'Episodes':
You know times are hard when you've got to sell your dinosaur egg.
Matt LeBlanc has money problems and, knowing Matt as we do, he is pretty ruthless when he's in a hole. This episode sees the former Friends star's ghastly alter ego encourage his ex-wife to marry her inappropriate boyfriend (the alimony's a bit steep) and face the dreaded possibility of selling his vineyard. He may even have to let his beach cleaner go. Meanwhile, the entire LA TV industry seems to be after the new script written by Brit exiles Sean (Stephen Mangan) and Beverly (Tamsin Greig), who have somehow found their way back to La La Land.
Episodes has so much going for it. It's co-written by David Crane, the clever writer mainly responsible for Friends! It has Joey from Friends in the shape of Matt LeBlanc playing himself, Matt, as an older, greyer and slappably unwiser version of Joey from Friends! It has Tamsin Greig! And Kathleen Rose Perkins! And it's really underwhelming!
Episodes, the comedy in which Matt LeBlanc plays Matt LeBlanc in a TV show about making a TV show, began its fourth series this week. Television has been making shows about making shows for many years, with mixed success. The problem, as with actors talking about acting, is that people at home tend not to consider television to be quite as important as the people who make it. Most of us worry more about running out of rinse aid.
"As much a wry look at US/Brit foibles as an in-joke TV industry satire"
Written by Ben Dowell. The Radio Times, 11th May 2015
The only relief came from Tamsin Greig and Stephen Mangan in the return of Episodes, says Tom Rowley.
Written by Tom Rowley. The Daily Telegraph, 11th May 2015
Sean and Beverly's terrible Pucks!, which stars Matt LeBlanc's ghastly alter-ego, has risen from the dead - "like Jesus if Jesus was a s****y sitcom" says one character. Some people might think Episodes itself should have been put out of its misery a while back. But Friends stalwart and co-writer David Crane has managed to breathe more life into a comedy that is as much a wry look at transatlantic foibles as Crane's satire/revenge on the industry he (and co-scribe and real-life partner Jeffrey Klarik) know all too well.
They've escaped. With Pucks! cancelled, scriptwriters Beverly and Sean are back in London. Except their "shitty sitcom no one watched" has, somehow, been renewed and the duo find themselves back in LA with a version of Matt LeBlanc still phoning in his Joey-from-Friends persona. Thus season four of the telly-about-telly series begins, and it's good to have it back because it's sharply written and funny. Tonight, Matt gets bad financial news. Beverly: "You can have a very nice life, even with as little as $31m."
The script doesn't rely on outrageous situations, funny one-liners or madcap characters to bring the comedy. Instead we're invited into a world that feels very real, and it's the chemistry between the characters and the decisions they make that draws out the comedy and the more we get to know the characters, the more we're drawn in.
Written by Elliot Gonzalez. I Talk Telly, 10th May 2015
Episodes star Stephen Mangan has revealed he feared he was about to be arrested in Los Angeles - but the police were just stopping him to say they loved the show.
The Irish Examiner, 10th May 2015
Some information about the latest series of Episodes.
Written by Morgan Jeffery. Digital Spy, 10th May 2015
If the fictional Pucks! script is dodgy, the Episodes script by David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik is well up to scratch, littered with screwball banter and anti-PC jokes.
Written by Bruce Dessau. Beyond the Joke, 9th May 2015
Telegraph Wonder Women #womenmustvote campaign: The actress Tamsin Greig urges women to use their voices and admits she's always voted Labour unlike her Conservative parents.
Written by Tamsin Greig. The Daily Telegraph, 6th May 2015
TV Choice met Matt LeBlanc and Stephen Mangan to chat about Series 4 of Episodes.
Written by Nick Fiaca. TV Choice, 5th May 2015
Reliable laughs and behind the scenes comedy from Matt LeBlanc, Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Greig.
Written by Henry Northmore. The List, 5th May 2015
BBC Two comedy in which the Friends star plays a version of himself alongside Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Greig will be back for another run - but LeBlanc is in no hurry to get back to work.
Written by Ben Dowell. The Radio Times, 5th May 2015
When Wimbledon Studios went into receivership just before shooting began on Episodes' fourth series, producer Debs Pisani had her work cut out keeping the production on track.
Written by Debs Pisani. Broadcast, 16th April 2015
Four seasons on, Showtime's Episodes reads like an affectionate breakup letter to Hollywood. It's the "I love you, but..." Its primary source of humor is and always has been the pain that's caused by the very industry the series is a part of, and there's nothing more painful - and therefore more entertaining - than what happens in season four, which premieres tonight in the USA.
Written by Brittany S. Frederick. Starpulse, 11th January 2015
TV stars David Schwimmer and Matt LeBlanc are set to reunite for BBC show Episodes, according to a newspaper report.
Written by Danny Walker. The Daily Mirror, 29th September 2014
As Sean and Beverley finally flee LA in the series three finale, it looks as if something might drag them back for a fourth season...
Written by Ben Dowell. The Radio Times, 9th July 2014
Plot twists! Mad monologues! Laugh-out-loud moments! Once again, Episodes builds up a head of comic steam just in time for… the end of a series. It's as if the writers work back from the finale and use previous instalments to fill in gaps. Fair enough if you're writing, say, a conspiracy thriller, but odd with a sitcom, where you need to fire zingers each week.
Now the cat is out of the bag - or, more accurately, the script is in front of a newly off-his-meds Castor - the net appears to be closing in on Bev and Sean, forcing them to stay in LA and potentially make the show that everyone already seems to love. Bev's sense is prevailing, but Sean is wavering. Soon, Carol is offering them the world, while new agent Eileen has the networks fighting over them. Is the carrot enough? Or are they afraid of getting beaten by the stick all over again? Last in the series.
In this episode we meet Matt LeBlanc's dad, his imaginary screen dad, in the best scene of the series so far. Stories have appeared on TMZ that Matt has gone into rehab, and Matt knows where they came from: he forgot to send dad his cheque, and this is revenge. So he storms round there - with Sean and Beverly in tow - to confront him.
Another instalment of Episodes potters along enjoyably without ever quite firing into comic life. Sean is more tempted than Beverly to entertain offers for their other script now Pucks! is doomed, but she can't wait to leave Hollywood and head home.
Just when Bev and Sean thought they were out, the vacuous Hollywood telly system is trying its hardest to pull them back in, thanks to the super-perky new agent who's latched herself on to them and got them a potential new series at Fox. Bev is out, Sean seems persuadable; this being near the end of series three, could their tenure in LA be extended? Meanwhile, Carol and Castor's predominantly sex-based relationship is continuing at a sweaty pace, but she wants to take it to the next level, despite his towering indifference.