Although this is not the first article I have written for thinkingcinematic, this will be my first one to be published. I would like to start it out with saying that I am really looking forward to writing about one of the things that most strikes my interest, film! There is not a more perfect project for a Journalism student with an uncanny hobby of watching movies. Although my main focus is of course going to be movies, this first review is actually directed towards a series. Not too many television shows are capable of catching and holding my attention. When I find one however, you better believe I will sit down at any possible moment and marathon it until it is over. Eastbound and Down is a series broadcast on HBO. It is an outrageous comedy produced by Gary Sanchez Productions. For those of you who are not familiar, this production company belongs to Will Ferrell. Will Ferrell and Adam McKay produced a total of 6 episodes for the first season, 7 episodes for the second, and will air 8 episodes for the third season. Unfortunately, the third has been announced to be the final season. The premiere will be airing at 10:00 p.m. on Sunday, February 19th. Do not miss out!
Eastbound and Down first aired in February of 2009. I was a little late in the game. I did not watch or even hear about it until around the end of 2010 or beginning of 2011. The second episode was already complete and out on DVD by the time I had caught wind. I should not complain, the second season was released around a year and a half after the first season came on. I was able to watch the two seasons consecutively. It made for a few nights worth of nonstop laughter.
This series is not as popular as it should be. Many people I know have never heard of it, and only a few have actually seen it. For those of you who have not seen it and are fans of comedy, you are definitely missing out. Danny McBride is nothing short of hysterical. He is ludicrous and downright hilarious. Anybody who has followed up on any of his movies can only imagine. It is vigorously offensive and aggressively vulgar, a comedy that everyone can appreciate.
Each of the characters are cast beautifully. The plot of the series may not strike your interest. It is the attitudes and lines of the characters and actors that bring the cards to the table. You will seriously laugh the entire time you watch this show. What can we expect to see in Season 3? Honestly, there really is no telling. With this being the final installment and the makers being who they are, it is all up in the air. Before getting into the synopsis, I would just like to once more stress just how absurd, facetious, and ridiculous this show really is. I feel like I cannot say it enough.
The beginning of the series reveals to us the rise and fall of Kenny Powers. He is an athlete for the Major League whose remarkable fast pitch quickly brings him to fame and fortune. Not too long after, his abuse of steroids, cocaine, and other drugs lands him as a washed out has-been. In the first season, he returns home and finds that everyone sees him as a joke. He becomes a full-time gym teacher while he trains to go back to the Major League. The girl he loved and left is now engaged to his loser boss and principal for the school they all work for. Kenny hires an awkward teacher with a creepy man-crush by the name of Stevie to be his assistant. Stevie is more of a stalker than anything else. While trying to get recognition, Kenny sets out to be a spokesman for a big time car dealer who is played by Will Ferrell. The plan of course backfires with an embarrassing scene. The drug abuse continues, and Kenny starts using steroids again. At the end of the season he gets an offer from Tampa and plans to leave his family and job behind with the company of April, the girlfriend he tried so desperately to win back. Just as he is fixing to leave, he receives a call saying that the deal is off. Attempting to hide it from his family and leave them assuming that he is back on track, he sets off with April, ditches her at a gas station, and leaves for Mexico.
The serious change in setting with the second season brings a new cast of faces to the show. While hiding out and getting into cockfighting, he is discovered by a baseball manager who is curious to see if Kenny still has potential. Stevie manages to locate Kenny and further assist him with his plans in Mexico. His first few games consists of fans who are unenthusiastic and dull compared to what he is used to. He flares up his act with ridiculous advertisement and bragging. His obscenity brings back the excitement from the audience that he is so used to, however it costs him the respect of his fellow teammates. That is not something he is concerned with. Kenny sees himself as higher than the rest of his team players. As he is sparking up his game, he considers staying in Mexico full-time. He does eventually settle some old baggage and return home with his “assistant” Stevie.
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