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The day after his 44th birthday, Thom Payne’s (Steve Coogan) agency hires a pair of young swedish creative directors to evolve the company. Thom comes under pressure from his friend and executive creative director Jonathan (Bradley Whitford), who advises him to rebrand himself (skinny jeans are an option). At lunch, headhunter Dani (guest star Ellen Barkin) advises Thom to admit he’s hit his joy ceiling.

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If you love stories about aging, privileged white men's banal anxieties

 

But those are the best kind of banal anxieties!

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I'll tell you one thing I responded to positively. Payne's jeremiad about Pepto Bismol having a twitter account. I have often thought the same thing: Who the hell "engages" with Pepto Bismol, Heinz Ketchup, Vlasic Pickles, etc., online? (Other than to post something you hope will get you cast in a testimonial commercial?) What's wrong with people?

 

(Apologies in advance to anyone here who does this.)

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I tried. I really did. But when I noticed the reception desk at the main character's workplace looked like my salad spinner, I zoned out thinking about salad, and I make really boring salads.  I bailed. 

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I tried w/this show but I just wasn't into it. How did they get away w/ the Keebler elves cartoons like that and not get sued. I mean those were exact portrayals right down to the catchphrases. It did make me miss the great Keebler cookie ads from the 80s.

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I like the premise (as an aging boomer trying to keep up in the workplace), but it's all a little too precious and gimmicky.  And do couples really talk like that, with such blunt language? I can see a bunch of girlfriends having the conversation about rejuvenation surgery, or the guys joking about it, but I'm not sure if two married couples would carry on the way they did. I think the show is trying a little too hard to be edgy and relevant.

IMO, "Togetherness" handles these issues much more realistically.

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A place to discuss particular episodes, arcs and moments from the show's run. Please remember this isn't a complete catch-all topic -- check out the forum for character topics and other places for show-related talk.

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John: Imagine, if every man could just steal an inch or two from another man - walking down the street, or on a bus, or in a workplace - just, BAM! Now I've got two more inches! Everyone would be looking to steal penis inches from everyone else, and everyone would be terrified that someone was stealing from them. THAT is corporate America, Tom.

Most accurate analogy for what drives the corporate mindset I've ever heard.

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I didn't like the whole "sending the present" back drama.  So stupid.  And asking the 5 year old if he wants to help in hurting his grandma by sending the present back? Who would do that?   The parts involving his work are good but the family stuff sucks.

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As a Jew, I was very unhappy with the way this episode "represented" Jews to an audience that contains many who aren't Jewish. I realize the writer/creator is Jewish. That just makes it worse. Because it means people out there who don't know any better may take his self-loathing view of his people and culture as the truth.

 

People accused Philip Roth of being a "self-hating Jew" but they were wrong, because he was getting at something real in his novels. This guy is just trading in ugly stereotypes.

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Looks like I'll be the only one in America watching this week.

You and I will probably be the only ones to make it through the whole season. So far, I'm diggin it.

 

Especially tonight's annoying gecko who makes dead baby jokes. I dunno if they meant this to air on Mothers Day...but perfect.

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I might be the only one here, but I think this show's been getting better by the week.

 

And that annoying gecko with the dead baby joke? Yep.

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They lost me at the fantasy of Steve Coogan fucking the elf mom. 

 

However, I want Grasshoppers.  And Pecan Sandies.  Now.

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I've seen all the episodes so far and  I think what bugs me the most about this show is that the main leads seem really over the top to me in their responses to things. I just never understand why they're so upset about the things they're upset about. The episode where the woman's mom sends the kid a giant gift and there's all this angst about what to do about it including a rather inappropriate involving of the kid himself just made me think ok what did this woman do to her to warrant so much bizarre rage? I need to know more so I can understand. Tonight they were both fantasizing about chasing down the space ship and I kept thinking really? Why? What is your problem? I mean their lives just don't seem that level bad to me so things really fall apart on my end whenever they go bugfuck over some relatively minor stressor. I'll chalk it up to arrogant writing and trying too hard to be whimsical. I also hate the fantasy sequences.

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OK, talk about weird coincidences. What were the chances that last night's episode had a focus group watching an ersatz "I'd Like To Buy The World A Coke" commercial on the same night as the Mad Men finale which featured "the real thing," pardon my pun?

Edited by TimWil
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OK, talk about weird coincidences. What were the chances that last night's episode had a focus group watching an ersatz "I'd Like To Buy The World A Coke" commercial on the same night as the Mad Men finale which featured "the real thing," par don my pun?

Planned ? Not Planned

I just watched the last 20 minutes of Mad Men, having never watched more than 5 minutes and after watching the episode of Happyish, I asked the exact question.  No mention of it anywhere in the media.

 

Would love to read opinions

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I tried this last night; I had DVR'd the first two eps to see if i want to watch it.  Now, I swear.  A lot. but seriously?  The show seemed to be trying to be edgy without succeeding.  I want to love this show, because I love Kathryn Hahn, but it's too much.  

 

My favorite part though, was when they talked about the kid being an asshole.  That didn't ring true to me either, but it was funny that the couples are close enough to say their friends kid is an asshole. 

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I watched just enough of the episode before the last one to see that once again, Shalom Auslander was putting out his very weird and self-loathing definition of what it means to be a Jew as if that's what it really means. And then I changed the channel.

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Planned ? Not Planned

I just watched the last 20 minutes of Mad Men, having never watched more than 5 minutes and after watching the episode of Happyish, I asked the exact question.  No mention of it anywhere in the media.

 

Would love to read opinions

Forbes.com made the observation.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/ellenkilloran/2015/05/18/mad-men-finale-coke-ad-appeared-on-happyish-on-the-same-night-but-it-wasnt-the-real-thing/

Upshot seems to be that the commercial is so iconic that it might have been a coincidence. I don't think I buy it (pun intended).

It was more interesting to me that MM (apparently) paid to air the "real thing" (see what I did there?) and Happyish had to do the we've-changed-it-enough-to-not-have-to-pay-but-you-know-what-it's-supposed-to-be thing. This after going balls to the wall with other household name brands.

BTW, love your nom de forum. I have a feeder outside each of my living room windows and have my babies so tame that they'll drink from them while i hold them - I'm working towards getting them to drink out of my hand.

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Thanks

my hummingbirds came back to my kitchen window looking for the feeder !!

love them

 

jury out for me on coincidence or on  purpose.....  it is a 40 year old ad (which I can't believe) as I am of that era, why dig it up.

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I took it off my DVR, and then I had regrets and added it back in. It might be worth watching out of curiosity. It is different, but it might be different in a too precious way, you know? Too self-conscious or something?

 

Best part of the show: Ellen Barkin, hands down. Worst part: Coogan gets on my nerves, and I'm not sure why. He's likable, but not likable to me, for some reason.

 

Also, way too much angst for people who don't really seem to have a reason for it. When Kathryn Hahn (I think that's her name) screamed and hurled herself around in the Jeep, in the parking lot of the precious "day school"? Yeah, that was too much.

 

But I'll keep trying. I want to like it.

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I took it off my DVR, and then I had regrets and added it back in. It might be worth watching out of curiosity. It is different, but it might be different in a too precious way, you know? Too self-conscious or something?

 

Best part of the show: Ellen Barkin, hands down. Worst part: Coogan gets on my nerves, and I'm not sure why. He's likable, but not likable to me, for some reason.

 

I can't stand Coogan. I think he feels superior to his audience.

 

 

 

Also, way too much angst for people who don't really seem to have a reason for it. When Kathryn Hahn (I think that's her name) screamed and hurled herself around in the Jeep, in the parking lot of the precious "day school"? Yeah, that was too much.

 

RIGHT??! 

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I initially tuned in because I read that the lead was originally Phillip Seymour Hoffman (IIRC, they actually filmed a pilot/first ep with him - I would pay to see that). Since then, I've gradually moved from curiosity to inertia, slowly moving towards hate watching.

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I initially tuned in because I read that the lead was originally Phillip Seymour Hoffman (IIRC, they actually filmed a pilot/first ep with him - I would pay to see that). Since then, I've gradually moved from curiosity to inertia, slowly moving towards hate watching.

 

I know this idea in my head can't be right, but here it is nonetheless. Hoffman OD'ed because he'd agreed to star in this hot mess, and didn't know how to get out of it.

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I know this idea in my head can't be right, but here it is nonetheless. Hoffman OD'ed because he'd agreed to star in this hot mess, and didn't know how to get out of it.

To paraphrase Triumph The Insult Comic Dog, "You keed", but I would be surprised if his despair over having taken this role contributed to his heroin use. The poor bastard was an Oscar winner, for God's sake.

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To paraphrase Triumph The Insult Comic Dog, "You keed", but I would be surprised if his despair over having taken this role contributed to his heroin use. The poor bastard was an Oscar winner, for God's sake.

 

I do hope I'm wrong, Lone Wolf, and undoubtedly am, but does it stretch the imagination too far to speculate that Hoffman thought to himself, "Oh God, I'm an Oscar winner...and now this POS is about to destroy me."

 

I get that heroin doesn't need a "reason" to kill, beyond its own addictive properties that call for ever more use of it. Yet my mind goes to this.

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I do hope I'm wrong, Lone Wolf, and undoubtedly am, but does it stretch the imagination too far to speculate that Hoffman thought to himself, "Oh God, I'm an Oscar winner...and now this POS is about to destroy me."

 

I get that heroin doesn't need a "reason" to kill, beyond its own addictive properties that call for ever more use of it. Yet my mind goes to this.

Actually, I don't entirely disagree with you - I meant to say "wouldn't be surprised". I think it's quite likely that the realization that he was an acclaimed movie star who was doing that show was one of the demons torturing him.

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I absolutely adore Steve Coogan, but this show is yanking my last nerve. I'm trying to give it a chance, but the characters are so unrelentingly miserable and angry, it's sort of hard to root for any of them.

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I absolutely adore Steve Coogan, but this show is yanking my last nerve.

 

 

Just wanted to echo that my loathing of this show is really extraordinary, considering how much I worship the ground Steve Coogan walks on--from bit parts in such as Tropic Thunder, to star turns in vehicles like The Alan Partridge Movie, and everything in between. If you had told me I'd have to stop watching a Steve Coogan premium-cable sitcom after two episodes, I'd never have believed you.

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I tried this last night; I had DVR'd the first two eps to see if i want to watch it.  Now, I swear.  A lot. but seriously?  The show seemed to be trying to be edgy without succeeding.  I want to love this show, because I love Kathryn Hahn, but it's too much.  

 

My favorite part though, was when they talked about the kid being an asshole.  That didn't ring true to me either, but it was funny that the couples are close enough to say their friends kid is an asshole. 

 

Yes, but would you ever tell your child that his classmate is an asshole?  Probably not.

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Coincidence. Weiner kept that a secret until

The day of.

The cartoons distracted me at first, but this show is just so dismal. Plus, most of the characters speak with the exact same pseudo pretentious references and philosophies. Their lines could be switched and half the time it wouldn't matter.

Steve Coogan is one of the funniest actors around but is totally wasted on this show. Any actor could be playing that part-(I know PSH was supposed to). They really don 't know how to write for him.

How did this get greenlit, twice?

PS- Woody called, he wants his dated 70s Jewish neurosis stereotypes back.

Edited by Cramps
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PS- Woody called, he wants his dated 70s Jewish neurosis stereotypes back.

 

Yes, not only dated, but at this point derivative. Woody's comedy worked because it had the authenticity of real life driving it. (I'd venture that he didn't deal in stereotypes, but truthful pain, which is what made it funny.) If Auslander really believes the Jewish stereotypes he's trading in, we can't laugh with him, all we can do is feel sorry for him, because it must be a lonely hell he lives in. 

 

I've got no problem with him portraying the Kathryn Hahn character the way he does. There are people like that, and they're worthy of dramatization. It's that Auslander ascribes her characteristics directly to her being Jewish that's offensive. (Not just to Jews, but to the entire audience whose intelligence is being insulted.)

Edited by Milburn Stone

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okay, I'm out.  Happy? Happy is nowhere near this thing. Ragish, Blowhardish. Holier than thou ish.

 

The topper was the drunk wives screaming in the mall. Guarantee everyone there wanted to kill them both. With broken Coke bottles.

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Happy is nowhere near this thing. Ragish, Blowhardish. Holier than thou ish.

 

Plus, I'm convinced all of these characters would simply fall down and die in fit of helplessness if confronted by an actual problem.  People firmly determined to be unhappy regardless of privilege and ease.  

 

Bye! Have fun whining! I was stuck in my house waiting for a tradesman to finish refinishing a bathtub.  The fumes necessitating that I stay in my office, with my dogs, door closed and I had very limited viewing options....and this show didn't even make the "It just has to be better then noxious fumes to make the cut" grade.  

 

2 episodes in and I had flee. 

Edited by stillshimpy
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I watched a few episodes, skipped some. Came back to the series and the son was wearing a dress and singing the Frozen song while his parents and their two friends clapped like it was the best thing ever. I'm out. Hope the series ends with these two miserable people committing suicide.

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How the hell would Tom still have a job?  His company keeps laying people off, he is a miserable suck who makes sure everyone knows that he hates what he does, he rarely even pretends to work, but he still has a job.  I keep trying to enjoy this show because of the actors, but I hate the characters.  The only character that makes me more stabby than Tom is his horrible, whiny, special snowflake child.  Even my love of Kathryn Hahn cannot make me sit through this anymore. 

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