Significant Others (2004– )

TV Series  |  TV-14  |   |  Comedy
8.2
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 90 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 3 critic

"Significant Others" is an improvised comedy about couples in and out of marriage counseling, taking a hysterically honest look at marriage and the rewards - and costs - that come with ... See full summary »

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2004  
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Cast

Series cast summary:
...
 Eleanor (12 episodes, 2004)
...
 Ethan (12 episodes, 2004)
...
 Chelsea (12 episodes, 2004)
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 James (12 episodes, 2004)
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 Connie (10 episodes, 2004)
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 Bill (10 episodes, 2004)
...
 Devon (9 episodes, 2004)
...
 Alex (8 episodes, 2004)
Mary Pat Dowhy ...
 Ginny (7 episodes, 2004)
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Storyline

"Significant Others" is an improvised comedy about couples in and out of marriage counseling, taking a hysterically honest look at marriage and the rewards - and costs - that come with being in a committed relationship. More real than traditional comedies and more imaginative than reality shows, this six-episode series features a talented ensemble of actors and comedians who, quite literally, script themselves. Written by JJ

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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An unconventional twist on the traditional sitcom. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

TV-14
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Release Date:

9 March 2004 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

James: [James is stuck in a cab in traffic leaving a message for Chelsea] Sweetie, in that last message when I said that you were annoying, I didn't mean that YOU were annoying. So much as it's, it's, the world is annoying sometimes, and you're, you are my world.
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User Reviews

In a hoard of improv comedies, "Others" is fresh and endlessly inventive. I absolutely loved it
10 June 2007 | by (www.liquidcelluloid.blog.com) – See all my reviews

Network: Bravo; Genre: Improv Comedy; Content Rating: TV-14 (frank sexual dialog, strong language, suggested sex); Available: DVD; Perspective: Cult Classic (star range: 1 - 5);

Seasons Reviewed: Complete Series (2 seasons)

Is it me or does every show that tries to pull off the Improv sitcom for some reason seem to act like they are the first to break the mold and blaze that trail? As we've seen, improvising your way through a story can go either way - be a brilliant comic insight into real human dialog and behavior ("Curb Your Enthusiasm") or simply a self-involved train wreck ("Fat Actress"). Add Rob Roy Thomas and Peter Tortorici's "Significant Others" - a fast-paced comic look at a handful of couples in therapy - to the top of the short list of great Improv comedies. And you know what? This one actually does break the mold and do something fresh. I really just loved every bit of it.

The show itself is basically a revolving door for these great characters to pass in and out of. Hysterically uptight James (Brian Palermo) and tough, bull-in-the-China-shop, been-around-the-block Chelsea (Andrea Savage, by any account the star of the show) are the most functionally dysfunctional couple of them all. Eleanor (Faith Salie ) and Ethan (Herschel Bleefeld) are the newlyweds with a baby on the way watching their cool former selves disappear. Then there is Bill (breakout star Fred Goss), depressed, unemployed husband to Connie (Jane Edith Wilson) who cheats on his wife with her sister. Hilarious late editions Devon (Chris Spencer) and Alex (Nicole Randall Johnson) are the marriage veterans with an 8 year old child who is picking up all of their bickering.

There is something wonderfully simple about all of this. Playing with a premise that requires little more than the actors on a couch talking to the camera, Thomas and Totalicini do exactly the right thing: strip the concept down to the bare bones and let that spontaneous, naturally-sounding rhythm that improv dialog affords take center stage. With the fat trimmed they move like a firecracker from one laugh to the next. They fill it back up with endlessly original stories, told with maximum efficiency. We've seen the couple get mugged before, but we haven't seen them go to the mugger's suburban home and steal the stuff back. We've seen an extra-marital affair being exposed, but not while the guy was sitting between both women at a funeral.

What feels so forced and contrived in "Curb" or so unfocused and spotty in "Reno 911!" is consistent, effortless and smooth in "Others". There is hardly a false note in the show. This is a clever series cut way to short by Bravo – apparently a network allergic to having anything except crap on it. It is adult and sophisticated, while at the same time wacky and screwball - qualities usually only reserved for the best British shows, yet it is as distinctly American as apple pie and divorce. "Significant Others" is a laugh-out-loud blast from start to finish. You really must see it.

* * * * ½ / 5


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