Before They Were Stars, They Were On 'Happy Endings'
Everybody heard over the weekend about how all three seasons of Happy Endings are available on Hulu, right? I’m not Happy Endings biggest fan, but it is the perfect show to have on in the background of just about any situation. Falling asleep, cleaning the house, trying to figure out what to write about when my post is already past deadline. It’s great. It’s also in retrospect great at picking out actors who were just a couple years (or months) shy of coming into their own hit shows. Yes, Happy Endings gave us Brad, Jane, Max, Penny, Dave and Alex, but it also gave us our first glimpses at:
For a brief period, both Happy Endings and New Girl were on air and on the top of their game, and the world was a beautiful place. But Happy Endings actually started a few months before New Girl meaning the Max Greenfield’s appearance in May 2011 as Max’s coffee-house-owning love interest was the first most of us had seen him. Now, yes, I’m fully aware that Greenfield had appeared on shows before, but none of those would make him a star. Boring Officer Leo D’Amato on Veronica Mars, someone named David Steinberg on had-to-look-it-up-to-remember-it Raising The Bar, and Young Sandy Cohen on one episode of The O.C. Wait, what?
Yep, never going to be able to unsee that.
I’m not sure what it says about me that I’d much rather hang out with Rita the terrible, vodka stealing, hooky playing assistant who takes advantage of Penny’s cool boss than hang out with Jane The Virgin, but it can’t be anything good.
One of the saddest things about Happy Endings’ untimely passing is that we would never get to see the full extent of the Happy Endings/ New Girl mingling. I’m very rarely a fan of a cross over, but I would pay a significant amount of money to see the episode where everyone finds out Brad has a secret second life as a gym teacher in L.A.
So why include Derek Waters, he of Drunk History fame who played Dave’s frolfing buddy Glaze, as a New Girl mingler? Partly because he was also on an episode of New Girl, and partly because New Girl star played a large part in Waters getting famous in the first place. According to an interview with Complex:
On the origin of Drunk History: The idea came from being with a friend, Jake Johnson, who was telling me a story about the great Otis Redding, who passed away. He was trying to convince me that Otis Redding knew he was going to die in a plane crash before he got on it. The story was so fucking confusing but he was so passionate about it, and I really like passionate people who have trouble explaining what they’re passionate about. I thought people get drunk and talk about music all the time, but I bet people don’t get drunk and talk about historical moments. I thought I could make something that tends to be boring more interesting.
Meaning Real Life Drunk Jake Johnson might be as much fun as Drunk Nick Miller.
June Diane Raphael
The New Girl mix also extends to June Diane Raphael who played Mrs. Shershow to T.J. Miller’s Mr. Shershow in the season 1 penultimate episode. If you don’t know the name yet, you definitely should. She’s done Party Down, New Girl, Happy Endings, and she’s hysterical. Which is readily apparent if you’ve seen her in Burning Love with too many other funny people to mention. I will some day attempt to do a yarn-wall map all of the relationships between her, BFF and writing partner Casey Wilson, and the various comedians they regularly pair up with (husband Paul Scheer, Ken Marino, Jessica St. Clair). But that would require fully contemplating that all of those people regularly get to hang out with each other which makes me so jealous my eye twitches a little. Which would only get in the way of my Happy Endings viewing. And no one wants that.
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