Seinfeld revolved around a stand-up comedian constantly sabotaged by the catastrophic social faux pas of himself and the people inextricably involved in his life, intercut with performance sets by the actual comic. So is Louie. But where Seinfeld was purportedly "a show about nothing," Louie is a show in which from moment to moment, you can safely expect nothing. Not only does Louis C.K. straddle the gaps in social protocol and everyday confrontations we all understand, but also the extremes of comedy and tragedy. It's a gallows comedy, in which we can find ourselves laughing in elation at the both wry and surreal absurdity of one moment, then clenching our chair arms in both tension and incredulity at moments of agonizing pain and even at times a true sense of impending brutality.
There is no continuity from one episode to the next, or even from one vignette to the next. Each episode is comprised of usually two scenarios book-ended by stand-up sets by Louie, which may or may not turn out to be part of one of the scenes. It's the direct inversion by an observant everyman's misanthrope of the TV sitcom. Whereas every sitcom we've ever seen has one essential soundstage, an ongoing play-like farce that runs before two cameras, all the same characters show up and everything not only works out but is just the same as before by the end, each week Louie will give a stream of consciousness an unsystematic narrative silhouette almost invariably a sequence of encounters with characters who enter and exit, yet very few ever return. Some actors and actresses return in different roles. Louie's mother is at one point played by an old woman as an appalling malignant narcissist and in another episode a humble, warm-hearted young working-class woman.
The show is written, directed and edited by its star, and he creates a visually realistic look and atmosphere for his small stories, captured quite cinematically. In the God episode, arguably the boldest, most powerful episode, he injects solemn amber tones, almost I dare say comparable to Gordon Willis' work on the Godfather films. There is a considerable proliferation of long takes in which two characters will share dialogue that sounds and feels no less real than that which we'll share with someone tomorrow. Sometimes, he's bold enough to prolong a single, stationary take in which nothing is being said on-camera, but all the action that affects the character in the shot is occurring off-camera, and in that very single take, we're carried seamlessly and steadily from deadpan absurdity to genuine terror. Then comes the cut: Life goes on; nothing's really that big of a deal. Simply put, each week, C.K. delivers one or two of the most powerful and memorable short films you may ever see.
Louie is great. He's carrying the torch, he is always funny and he's real. He's got the mind of a writer, so his bits have always got a back story to them. I guess that's the reason his show is so good. He's talking about his life and the world he lives in. The same world most of us live in. He's the best comic on the scene, that's a fact.
One thing, Lou--when you're doing your bit in the Cellar, do you always use the same 3 guys at the table sitting stage right? It's distracting. It's sloppy. If they aren't the same 3 guys, then they're awful close to the same. Put a woman or 2 there, or do something to really switch it up. Nitpicking? Maybe, but it's distracting.
You're the best in the business, Louie CK. But you've earned it. I remember 25 years ago, you doing a bit on Conan with Robert Smeagel (?), about how to communicate with your dog. Haha. You had all your hair still. Thanks, right?
I like this show. It's definitely not for everyone. You have to be able to find humor in social awkwardness to enjoy this. I find it hysterical so this show fits me perfectly.
It's a mix of stand up routines and short sketch bits. In the sketches, the other actors are often other stand up comics who have the same sense of humor as Louie CK. I assume they are all comics Louie knows personally from comedy clubs. So there is acting chemistry between everyone. This just makes everything flow better and be funnier.
It comes down to how much you like Louie CK. If you hate his stand up, you will probably hate this show. If you like his stand up, you'll like this show because it's the exact same style of humor you're used you from Louie CK.
Some of Louie's comments on society are spot-on, and many of the situations and jokes are funny. However, there's an equal amount of gross and/or disturbing material--and coming from me, that's saying something. Also, as far as the "plot" (it is, after all, a TV series), some of the stories are interesting and thought-provoking, while others feel like filler. The whole project seems kind of random to me. I most likely won't watch any other seasons; it's just not my style, and I'd rather spend my time watching things I wholeheartedly enjoy. But Mr. C.K. has certainly done well for himself and has a huge following. Comedy is subjective, after all.
Self-Deprecating humor about one's life and body and lack of getting laid enough that the public will have interest in viewing and following.... I lasted for 5 of the 13 episodes in 2010's Season 1. I hope this comedian has expanded his repertoire by now, in 2017, because, no matter how outrageously inappropriate talking about one's genitals, body fat, lack of love, etc. can be funny; as the only topics of entertainment, quickly becomes BORING.... Yawn. Thanks Amazon Prime for the opportunity to watch this for no extra fees.
This is a funny series if you're "into" his style of schtick. He tackles all of life's problems and some current events treating the subjects with an equal degree of disrespect.
Louis is a divorced man with two young daughters who spend some time with him. Even when he's wearing his "daddy hat" there are a lot of asides and innuendo taking place out of the girl's purview. At night he does his stand up routine which can be raunchy and at times over-the-line of what's acceptable. He tackles all subjects; from sex to Osama bin Laden with the same cheekiness.
I'm 70 for gods sakes and find myself laughing more than I would care to admit BUT I'll never recommend this series to any of the other old ladies in my book club - it's my own dirty little secret.