‘Happy Endings’ Sparks New Beginnings21 Sep, 2012 By: Ashley Ratcliff
In ABC’s ensemble comedy “Happy Endings” six close-knit friends navigate the highs and lows that come with being a 30-year-old in hip downtown Chicago. Love lives and careers — and the lack thereof, for some — are explored, while family members and old friends are introduced in season two.
For those reasons, the similarities to another show about a gaggle of pals — “Friends” — were noticeable among viewers and critics alike as the show entered its sophomore season.
Creator, writer and executive producer David Caspe, however, sees the associations with the popular syndicated sitcom as a positive.
“I think ‘Friends’ is a great show, so to be compared to them is always a compliment,” he said. “I think it’s sort of inevitable: Six people that are about the same age, and in that show has six people that are about the same age as ours. … It’s obviously a very a tough show to be compared to — it’s one of the most successful shows of all time. We’re not trying to steal from them or anything, just kind of trying to do our thing. But I have nothing but respect for them.”
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Oct. 23 releases Happy Endings: The Complete Second Season as a three-disc DVD set ($45.99) with all 21 episodes, including the fan-favorite “Spooky Endings” Halloween episode and season finale “Four Weddings and a Funeral (Minus Three Weddings and One Funeral).”
“Happy Endings” follows the inseparable, witty group of best friends who include married yuppies Brad (Damon Wayans Jr.) and Jane (Eliza Coupe); Jane’s dumb-blonde younger sister, Alex (Elisha Cuthbert); Dave (Zachary Knighton), a food truck owner who previously was engaged to Alex; Penny (Casey Wilson), a self-involved, desperate single; and Max (Adam Pally), a sarcastic slacker.
The gang of six encountered their share of misadventures, from a cranky landlord to “work” spouses to a racist, homophobic parrot. Season two also saw Dave and Alex rekindle their flames for each other, while Jane got the baby bug and Brad got laid off. Max found a match who the crew adores, and Penny finally may have landed a guy who’s boyfriend material.
With improvisation that comes from the quite comical cast, the season-two set is full of outtakes and deleted scenes.
One such gem that viewers can find on the DVD stems from the first episode of the season, “Blax, Snake, Home.” In the season premiere, Penny gets a new condo and a new lease on life; it appears that nothing can go wrong in the new “Year of Penny.” However, she begins to believe that her new place is cursed and that she’ll wind up a lonely cat lady — hilarity ensues.
In the deleted scene, “Penny has a dream in which she meets herself as a 65-year-old spinster. Casey Wilson played herself, and then acted with herself in it, and it was hilarious,” Caspe said at a “Happy Endings” event in May. “With 65-year-old Penny, instead of cats, her pets were a bunch of mini ponies that are dressed up like My Little Pony.”
“It’s really funny,” he continued. “We cut it together, but it ended up being a little too long for the episode, but I’d love to put it on the DVD.”
“Happy Endings” returns for a third season Oct. 23 at 9 p.m. on ABC.