12. Episodes (Showtime)
Stars: Mat LeBlanc, Stephen Mangan, Tamsin Greig, John Pankow, Kathleen Rose Perkins, Mircea Monroe
Premiere date: July 1
Of all the former Friends stars, Matt LeBlanc, prior to January 2011, seemed to be the most in danger of post-NBC nothingness. Hell, even David Schwimmer has those animated Madagascar movies to rely upon for success. LeBlanc, though? The stain of catastrophes like the Friends spinoff Joey has been devastating.
Well, until Episodes came long, that is. In a bit of Curb Your Enthusiasm-esque self-lampooning, LeBlanc plays a fictionalized version of himself, an unreliable Hollywood name who, without much assistance, ruins the stateside debut of award-winning British TV producers Sean and Beverly Lincoln (Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Greig).
Our one complaint? Frankly, there’s not enough LeBlanc. In season two, Episodes needs to focus more on its recognizable bread-and-butter and less on his less hysterical co-stars. It’s not like there isn’t enough in LeBlanc’s real-life filmography to spoof. —M.B.