(Hulu/VOD) DIFFICULT PEOPLE is for everyone who watched SEINFELD and realized those four friends were garbage people, but still loved the jokes (and loved the series finale).
It features Julie (Julie Klauser) as an aspirational comedian/writer stuck recapping TV (this is back in the days of -Television Without Pity-), her best friend Billy (Billy Eichner) as an aspiring comedian/actor, and a long list of brilliant supporting talent such as James Urbaniak (HENRY FOOL, VENTURE BROS) as Julie’s long-suffering boyfriend and NPR stooge, Andrea Martin (SCTV, BLACK CHRISTMAS, GREAT NEWS) as Julie’s mother, and Cole Escola and Gabourey Sidibe as co-workers at the coffee shop Billy works at.
The eps are mostly self-contained and normally feature Julie & Billy scheming to advance their writing and acting careers, but often fail miserably because they’re terrible people that can’t go two seconds without (wittily) tearing into someone, and you kind of love them for it. They know who they are, they know they aren’t going to change, and they know the world will never accept them, but they know they’re goddamn funny and smart so they’ll never stop trying or shut the fuck up. While their jokes are absolutely filthy and hurtful, they always punch up.
Somehow, despite being one of the first Hulu original shows, and despite neither Klausner or Eichner being terribly well-known names at the time, they managed to get the most ridiculous guest stars -and- make proper use of them! Deborah Harry! John Mulaney, in the part he was born to play: an eccentric rich young man into Edwardian clothing, technology, and vernacular! Stockard Channing! Victor Garber! Jessica Walter! Nathan Lane! Martin Short! Micky Dolenz! Mink Stole! John Cho! Even goddamn Lin-Manual Miranda:
Also, DIFFICULT PEOPLE had the best goddamn cold opens, partially because they always had the perfect quip and then smash-cut to WHITE REAPER’s -She Wants To- (captioned solely as DRIVING PUNK MUSIC), which is the perfect punctuation. (Similarly, just about every ep manages a perfect kiss-of before launching into WHITE REAPER’s -Half Bad-.)
Here’s a montage of the best/worst lines and insults, including some cold open jokes:
S2 Trailer (because the S1/S3 trailers? Very misleading.)
It’s not for everyone. Hell, it’s not for most well-adjusted people. However, it’s a show I routinely re-watch — and I rarely re-watch TV, apart from single scenes or sole episodes for research — because it’s so gleefully over-stuffed with jokes and gags, and the pacing is perfection. I know it’ll probably never happen, but I do hope that they’re able to find an outlet that’ll bring the show back five years from now, even if it’s just for a special.