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Ongoing Coupling (USA) thread (show cancelled)


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#1 of 94 OFFLINE   BrianB

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Posted September 25 2003 - 02:34 PM

Well, that stank Posted Image

I know it's the first episode and the actors & actresses need to find the "rythym" of the dialogue, but damn, that stank. Terrible timing, terrible wooden acting with only really Susan & Patrick pulling off their roles as far as I'm concerned. Sally is *completely* wrong & forced, and the actor for Jeff is utterly utterly wrong for the part from that performance. Rena Stofer (is that her name?) was by far the best of the bunch as Susan, acting wise & character wise.

Watching "Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps" now, and the difference is night & day.
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#2 of 94 OFFLINE   Peter Kim

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Posted September 25 2003 - 03:09 PM

Agreed. This pilot was awful for all of the reasons stated. If things don't look up, NBC might need to keep Friends around for another season.
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#3 of 94 OFFLINE   Clint B

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Posted September 25 2003 - 03:16 PM

I agree overall, but I didn't think the actor that played Jeff was horrible (although he's nowhere near as good as Richard Coyle). I did laugh a few times, but I think much of that was because I knew what was coming.

There was a write-up in the Dallas Morning News today that compared the British and the American versions. The writer said that the British version was more consistently funny, because they fit the jokes around the story in the British version, whereas in the American version, they basically try to fit the story around the jokes. That made sense to me, especially after I re-watched the first episode of the British version right after the American version.

#4 of 94 OFFLINE   Dan Rudolph

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Posted September 25 2003 - 03:31 PM

Essentially, it's a show about British social mores. Setting it in the US won't work no matter what you do.
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#5 of 94 OFFLINE   Rob Speicher

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Posted September 25 2003 - 04:01 PM

Awful. I'll stick with BBCA for now.

#6 of 94 OFFLINE   Michael Boyd

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Posted September 25 2003 - 04:18 PM

Pilot WAS awful.

I've heard a few positive reports on other episodes filmed recently on the BBCA forums. I'll watch a couple more at least.
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#7 of 94 OFFLINE   Craig S

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Posted September 25 2003 - 04:22 PM

I'm with you guys. Ugh. I laughed almost non-stop at the BBC version of the first episode when I saw it a few months ago. I barely managed a chuckle tonight. I could only get through about 10 minutes, and I had to turn it off.

I thought the acting was uniformly horrible. To be fair to the actors, almost all of them are miscast.

A disaster all-around. I'll ignore this, and wait for the S2 BBC DVD next month.

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#8 of 94 OFFLINE   Adam_ME

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Posted September 25 2003 - 05:28 PM

It wasn't anywhere near as bad as I expected, although I was anticipating the worst sitcom ever made based on word of mouth so in the end I still think it sucked.

The only characters I liked in this version were Susan and Jane. And the latter is the worst thing about the British show, so that won't help NBC too much. Steve is completely wrong, and Sally bore almost no resemblance to her BBC counterpart. Why did they cut out all her paranoia about aging? The jury's still out on Jeff. I thought he was decent, but Richard Coyle is by far the highlight of the original, so decent ain't gonna cut it.

Truthfully, I never though "Flushed" was that great of a pilot anyway, so I'll give the NBC version a few more weeks. But if they manage to screw up "The Woman With Two Breasts", this show is doomed.
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#9 of 94 OFFLINE   Patrick Sun

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Posted September 26 2003 - 01:08 AM

I just recently watched the BBC version for season 1, so it's virtually impossible for me to not to compare the US version with its UK counterpart. That being said, I thought the casting wasn't good, and as someone else pointed out in a review, they tried to write the story around the punchlines, rather than let the punchlines come out more naturally through the story. I'll give it a few more episodes, but it all comes across rather forced and unconvincingly.
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#10 of 94 OFFLINE   Michael St. Clair

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Posted September 26 2003 - 01:19 AM

Susan (Rena Sofer) was pretty good.

Otherwise, Posted Image

Hate the laugh track, too.

#11 of 94 OFFLINE   Bill Street

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Posted September 26 2003 - 02:05 AM

Quote:
The only characters I liked in this version were Susan and Jane. And the latter is the worst thing about the British show, so that won't help NBC too much.


I disagree. I think Jeff and Jane are the two best parts of the British Coupling. I mean that whole episode with Jane and the sock puppet is too much!!!

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#12 of 94 OFFLINE   Max Knight

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Posted September 26 2003 - 02:06 AM

The pilot was completely flacid.


"The Zone" was way better than the "Hand Stamp", and "Stockings" were much funnier than "No Panties". Seriously, how can you be entitled to someones "no panties"?

I'm sticking to the BBC version.
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#13 of 94 OFFLINE   Scott DeToffol

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Posted September 26 2003 - 02:22 AM

I wasn't impressed and barely laughted. I agree that the cast didn't seem to mesh. Rena Sofer may be classically good looking, but she isn't an attractive personality. She should stick to modeling.

#14 of 94 OFFLINE   Malcolm R

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Posted September 26 2003 - 02:24 AM

I didn't see the US version, but I do remember watching the first two episodes of the UK version on DVD and wondering, "why is everyone raving about this show? It's not that funny." Then, from the third episode on, it really took off and I loved it.

So, if the US show is recycling the same scripts in the same order, it stands to reason the first couple of episodes are going to be kind of weak since, IMO, the UK version wasn't all that good in its first episodes either.
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#15 of 94 OFFLINE   Keith Mickunas

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Posted September 26 2003 - 03:00 AM

I thought the British pilot flowed pretty good. I still felt it was a pilot, as it was obvious that they tried to introduce each character and give some idea of who they were, but it still worked well. The American pilot looked like it was a pilot because it didn't flow well at all. The timing was off, the dialog seemed forced, nothing seemed to work right. Plus since they cut Sally pretty much of out of it, there's no explanation as to why she tried to pick up Patrick right after Susan dumped him.

Frankly, I have no hope for this show nor much interest in it. I just watched to see if it was a total train wreck because I love the British Coupling and don't see any reason to translate it. They got to find a better way to do things because losing 8 minutes a show also really hurts it. I read they'll be cutting down Steve's monologues. That makes "Inferno". I don't know how that episode will work without it. If they really want to give it a chance to work, give Friends, Coupling and Will & Grace 40 minutes each week. That's a start.

#16 of 94 OFFLINE   Michael St. Clair

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Posted September 26 2003 - 03:05 AM

This doesn't even seem to be the same Sally at all. I don't see her portrayal (not the events themselves) as consistent with the eventual backstory with Patrick.

The fact is that all six cast members of the original are frickin' excellent, and I don't see this cast rising to the occasion, even if the direction gets up to speed.

Timing is critical, and the timing sucked last night.

And I doubt the writing holds up when they do their own scripts.

#17 of 94 OFFLINE   Michael St. Clair

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Posted September 26 2003 - 03:12 AM

Quote:
Essentially, it's a show about British social mores.


I don't agree with that, Coupling situations and truisms more universal than other britcoms.

If 'Man About the House', 'Steptoe and Son', and 'Till Death Us Do Part' can make it here, 'Coupling' could too...but not with this effort!

#18 of 94 OFFLINE   LarryDavenport

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Posted September 26 2003 - 03:43 AM

I didn't watch because the commercials looked bad and I had read reviews beforehand, none of them kind.

Except for Rena Sofer I didn't recognise anyone. With Friends I had seen almost all the cast on different sitcoms so new they had talent.

Perhaps they should pull the plug now and recast for next year. Paul Rudd and Aisha Tyler will need jobs.

#19 of 94 OFFLINE   Peter Kim

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Posted September 26 2003 - 03:52 AM

Quote:
Paul Rudd and Aisha Tyler will need jobs.


Posted Image I hope they find something regular, since I like them on Friends.
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#20 of 94 OFFLINE   John_Berger

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Posted September 26 2003 - 04:03 AM

See the new definition of "boring" in the dictionary come the end of the year: The NBC version of "Coupling".

What a shame that the real deal is shown on BBC America several times per week! Posted Image





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