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Wed, 24 Aug 2005:
I've been watching some episodes of The Coupling, and all I can say is Wow !. These guys are the ultimate sit-com I've ever seen - Subtle and funny. The kind of show you could watch with a six year old and the kid wouldn't understand anything, while you'll be on the floor rolling. It is all about context and referential humor. For example one swallow doesn't make a summer can mean a couple of things.

Also it sticks to my favourite character types - fumbling hero, sure and confident heroine, the strange side-kick and a attention-drawing companion. In H2G2 - Arthur, Trillian, Ford and Zaphod. Here it is Steve, Susan, Jeff and Patrick in those roles. The mix is almost too rich till you add two crazy women to compensate for the guys.

The comedy is unfortunately very surreal - you can't quote it without explaining the context which sort of destroys the joke. The story proceeds from all direction and sort of joins up by the end of the episode. Adult themes are rampant including political jokes : what revolution ?. you guys are in power now. We're the rebels now. and lots more jokes which the British-illiterate won't get.

To top it all off - the show actually has no sex. No, nude women or even semi-nude ones. Just suggestions - like a bunch of remotes with no batteries.

Susan: oh, the batteries must have run out.
* Steve looks inside the remotes
Steve: they appear to have also climbed out.
Susan: hold on a tick, I think I know where I put them
* Susan goes into the bedroom

Now think about it - were they in her alarm clock or her flash light ?. You see the subtlety in the word-play ?. Some stuff is unimitably funny. Here's steve trying to pass off some porno as just being erotica (as in having a plot that cannot be expressed in diagrams).

Jill: Do these movies have plots too ?.
Steve: They are mostly mood peices.
Susan: expressionistic ?
Steve: yes.. yes
Jeff: at the top of their voices
Steve: Jeff, you can stop helping now.

I am pretty sure that if Douglas Adams mixed sex into his books (other than the part about "Thor and Trillian up in the bedroom" , which thor promptly explains as "I was weighing her, flying is a tricky business"). And made a screen play out of it for TV, this is pretty much what you get. It's got the word play, the personalities and just a hint of reality to make it appeal to the loser in us (really, I like Jeff).

All in all, I suggest you read the title again and think what I was talking about.

posted at: 14:27 | path: /slashdot | permalink | Tags: