Ok, technically that’s not true. Wilfred returned last week, with a strange (even for that show) episode featuring Robin Williams as institutional psychiatrist Robin Williams, a twisted version of the character he played in Good Will Hunting. That episode was deemed a Special Preview episode…which makes me wonder if they’re going to repeat it tonight. So I will say no more about it, save that it wrapped up the events of last season’s finale in a way that may or may not have rebooted the show’s central premise/question. Could I be any more cryptic? Perhaps, my friends. Perhaps.
In any case, hooray, because network TV’s two most essential comedies are returning…you know, scratch that. TV’s – and that includes HBO and Showtime – two most essential comedies are returning tonight. I have professed my love for Wilfred here before, and we’re all huge fans of Louie here at MamaPop. They are oases in a sea of mostly bad sitcoms (HBO’s Veep is hilarious, Girls…eh, not feelin’ it, and everything else is in reruns). Both shows are wildly different, but they both have one thing in common: they’re unlike anything else on TV right now.
So what can we expect from these two? Wilfred promises a reboot, of sorts: at the end of last season, Ryan (Elijah Wood, looking like Frodo might if he kept the nice shiny Precious) discovered that the entrance to the basement where he and Wilfred hung out and smoked weed (those unfamiliar with the show: Ryan is best friends with his hot neighbor’s dog, who appears to him as an Australian guy – show co-creator Jason Gann – in a dog suit) is gone. It’s just a closet, which led him to think that he might be crazy after all. Without giving too much away, at the end of the Special Preview episode, we and Ryan are still not sure if Ryan’s nuts, but it appears that we’ll get to see a whole other side of Ryan – his work life, which includes boss Steven Weber (owner of one the best celeb Twitter feeds out there) and co-workers Allison Mack (who you may remember from Smallville) and Rob Riggle, Daily Show regular (and – Fun Fact – officer in the Marine Corps Reserves).
Little is known about the third season of Louie, but Louis CK has offered up a couple of tidbits (Jesus, I hate that word, but I almost used “morsels”, which is even worse). First, Jerry Seinfeld will be doing a guest stint, appearing in three episodes. Louie frequently features appearances by fellow comedians, including memorable turns by Doug Stanhope and Joan Rivers. I’m guessing we’ll get a different take on Bizarro Jerry. More interesting: “Louie”‘s ex-wife will be black. Which is weird, since his ex-wife has been a part of past episodes, and has been white. This immediately brings to mind Larry David’s adopted African-American family on Curb Your Enthusiasm; as David managed to make something new and hilarious out of that arc, I’ve no doubt that CK (is that how he’s referred to in print? I’d call him Louis, but that seems so familiar and presumptuous) will mine some hitherto undiscovered vein of comedy gold with this new plot twist.
So set your DVR’s – Wilfred airs at 10:00 tonight, Louie at 10:30. Let us watch, and laugh and laugh, as we once did when we were young and life still held some promise. Oh, and apparently that new Charlie Sheen show, which also starts tonight, really sucks.