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38 Reviews
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Smart And Savvy Industry Satire--Matt LeBlanc Plays Matt LeBlanc In Another Finely Tuned Ensemble
When Showtime was touting the new comedy "Episodes" for its winter line-up, a lot of the pre-press and advertising had to do with Matt LeBlanc. While I like LeBlanc, his presence in a new show was neither a particular draw for me nor a deterrent. However, I did tune in to give the program a shot and was pleasantly surprised that instead of purely a LeBlanc vehicle,...
Published on December 27, 2011 by K. Harris

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars But How Will It Play In Peoria?
If you look up the definition of "guilty pleasure" in the dictionary, you will find this show. Emphasis on "guilty". If I could have given it 2 1/2 stars, I would have done that. It's pretty crude. The language is appalling, as are all of the sexual shennanigans. (sigh) But Matt LeBlanc (as his ficitionalized self - I do *hope* it's fictionalized!) is somehow charming...
Published 3 months ago by Risa Brannon


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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Smart And Savvy Industry Satire--Matt LeBlanc Plays Matt LeBlanc In Another Finely Tuned Ensemble, December 27, 2011
When Showtime was touting the new comedy "Episodes" for its winter line-up, a lot of the pre-press and advertising had to do with Matt LeBlanc. While I like LeBlanc, his presence in a new show was neither a particular draw for me nor a deterrent. However, I did tune in to give the program a shot and was pleasantly surprised that instead of purely a LeBlanc vehicle, "Episodes" featured a smart and savvy ensemble of actors in a delightful (and frighteningly believable) skewering of the entertainment industry. Most specifically, the show targets the creative and borderline insane process behind bringing a new television program to air. This surprisingly intelligent foray into scathing satire may not be the best program on the subject I've ever seen (try the uncomfortable awkwardness of "The Comeback," the blistering ruthlessness of "Action," or the of-the-moment imperative of "Grosse Pointe" as other possible candidates), but it is pretty on-the-mark!

What is intriguing, and quite appealing, about "Episodes" is that it combines the outrageous rudeness you might expect from Showtime with a droll British sensibility more in line with BBC. In fact, it is precisely this dichotomy that fuels the entire premise of the program. The season revolves around what happens when a successful and critically acclaimed British sitcom is adapted and Americanized for a stateside audience. The actual leads of the show are Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Grieg as the married co-creators of said sitcom who are enticed to Hollywood to helm the new interpretation. Playing as fish out of water comedy in earlier segments, the couple soon realize that compromise and capitulation are key in this new environment. For the stuffy headmaster role, the part gets handed to LeBlanc and reinterpreted as a hockey coach in the newly christened "Pucks." But this is just the beginning of the nightmare ride that just may destroy the couple!

Stephen Mangan is terrific--it's hard not to be caught up in his boyish enthusiasm! Grieg tackles the more difficult role with precision--she can be mildly unlikable but is generally the most sensible character in any particular scene. And finally, there's LeBlanc. LeBlanc perfectly uses his world weary charm to great affect. Trading on his persona, he oozes intelligence and industry savvy and, quite frankly, playing an alter ego fictionalization of himself displays more range than you might expect. It's a fabulous performance played with ease. John Pankow personifies showbiz phoniness as a studio executive, Mircea Monroe avoids easy stereotyping as a sexy co-star, and the delightful Kathleen Rose Perkins is the show's secret weapon as Pankow's peppy assistant! This great cast brings this biting satire to life, but it's the well observed screenplays that really sell the concept. The first episode is primarily set-up--but after that, the episodes are bright (there are seven half hour episodes in total), lively and quite smart about the industry. I really enjoyed "Episodes." For me, it's a 4 1/2 star experience--but I particularly recommend it to anyone with an inherent interest in television or Hollywood shenanigans! KGHarris, 2/11.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this under-rated show!, November 8, 2012
This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
Friends told me about how wonderfully acted and written this show was. And they were so right. Funny, with characters you can relate to and stories that make the half hours fly by. In fact, I dare you to try to only watch one. Like a terrific novel you just don't want it to end. Matt leBlanc totally deserved his golden globe and the supporting cast is equally gifted. Bottom line: smart, fun great television.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Smart And Savvy Industry Satire--Matt LeBlanc Plays Matt LeBlanc In Another Finely Tuned Ensemble, October 23, 2011
This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
When Showtime was touting the new comedy "Episodes" for its winter line-up, a lot of the pre-press and advertising had to do with Matt LeBlanc. While I like LeBlanc, his presence in a new show was neither a particular draw for me nor a deterrent. However, I did tune in to give the program a shot and was pleasantly surprised that instead of purely a LeBlanc vehicle, "Episodes" featured a smart and savvy ensemble of actors in a delightful (and frighteningly believable) skewering of the entertainment industry. Most specifically, the show targets the creative and borderline insane process behind bringing a new television program to air. This surprisingly intelligent foray into scathing satire may not be the best program on the subject I've ever seen (try the uncomfortable awkwardness of "The Comeback," the blistering ruthlessness of "Action," or the of-the-moment imperative of "Grosse Pointe" as other possible candidates), but it is pretty on-the-mark!

What is intriguing, and quite appealing, about "Episodes" is that it combines the outrageous rudeness you might expect from Showtime with a droll British sensibility more in line with BBC. In fact, it is precisely this dichotomy that fuels the entire premise of the program. The season revolves around what happens when a successful and critically acclaimed British sitcom is adapted and Americanized for a stateside audience. The actual leads of the show are Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Grieg as the married co-creators of said sitcom who are enticed to Hollywood to helm the new interpretation. Playing as fish out of water comedy in earlier segments, the couple soon realize that compromise and capitulation are key in this new environment. For the stuffy headmaster role, the part gets handed to LeBlanc and reinterpreted as a hockey coach in the newly christened "Pucks." But this is just the beginning of the nightmare ride that just may destroy the couple!

Stephen Mangan is terrific--it's hard not to be caught up in his boyish enthusiasm! Grieg tackles the more difficult role with precision--she can be mildly unlikable but is generally the most sensible character in any particular scene. And finally, there's LeBlanc. LeBlanc perfectly uses his world weary charm to great affect. Trading on his persona, he oozes intelligence and industry savvy and, quite frankly, playing an alter ego fictionalization of himself displays more range than you might expect. It's a fabulous performance played with ease. John Pankow personifies showbiz phoniness as a studio executive, Mircea Monroe avoids easy stereotyping as a sexy co-star, and the delightful Kathleen Rose Perkins is the show's secret weapon as Pankow's peppy assistant! This great cast brings this biting satire to life, but it's the well observed screenplays that really sell the concept. The first episode is primarily set-up--but after that, the episodes are bright (there are seven half hour episodes in total), lively and quite smart about the industry. I really enjoyed "Episodes." For me, it's a 4 1/2 star experience--but I particularly recommend it to anyone with an inherent interest in television or Hollywood shenanigans! KGHarris, 2/11.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Show ever, February 7, 2014
By 
This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
I LOVE Episodes! It is smart, funny, clever and not your usual lame comedy formula show. Matt Le Blanc is hilarious and the two leads are perfect. This show is addicting. Prepare yourself for a marathon.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Instant fan!, January 12, 2013
By 
Shelly Rogers (Hulbert, Oklahoma USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
As a huge Friends fan (I still watch every day), I couldn't resist watching this show. The reviews have been phenomenal and rightly so. Matt LeBlanc is amazing, as well as the rest of the cast. I recommend if you're a Friends fan, a LeBlanc fan, or just a fan of great comedy!
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3.0 out of 5 stars But How Will It Play In Peoria?, September 26, 2014
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This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
If you look up the definition of "guilty pleasure" in the dictionary, you will find this show. Emphasis on "guilty". If I could have given it 2 1/2 stars, I would have done that. It's pretty crude. The language is appalling, as are all of the sexual shennanigans. (sigh) But Matt LeBlanc (as his ficitionalized self - I do *hope* it's fictionalized!) is somehow charming and somewhere deep inside that big lug there is a genuine heart, and that's what keeps the thing going. There are plenty of inside jokes about the world of Show Biz and its stereotypical characters, so for anyone who's ever been exposed to that world (as I have in a small way) - there are belly laughs. The relationship between the show's married writers is a kind of breath of fresh air (most of the time, but not always.) But as they say, I don't know how all this plays in Peoria.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!, April 5, 2012
By 
Eiric Baardsen (Roanoke, Virginia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
This is a wonderfully written and acted series in my opinion. The dialog is sharp and witty, the setting is the always glorious California and of course it starts Matt LeBlanc from Friends fame. I'm very happy to see there will be a second season and hopefully more to come after that.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely brilliant!, March 28, 2014
This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
Having lived in Los Angeles and suffered through the indignities of show biz, this series is so truthful it hurts. Want to know what the TV industry is like? This. It is like this. BRILLIANT performances from two of my favorite British actors, Stephan Mangan and Tamsin Greig. Smart, so well written, excellently directed... it has it all! I just loved it!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly funny, March 25, 2014
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This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
This show was recommended to me by a friend, but I hesitated because I was never a huge Matt LeBlanc fan. However, this show has a great cast and witty, smart dialogue. Matt LeBlanc is funnier than I expected and the supporting cast is fabulous!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Funny, March 11, 2014
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This review is from: Season One (Amazon Instant Video)
Funny, Funny, Funny, if you loved Matt in "Friends" you will love him in Episodes. Older but not wiser. Great
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Season One [HD]
Season One [HD] by James Griffiths
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