Season 1 Episode 1: “I Seem to be Running Out of Dreams for Myself”
Directed by Tristram Shapeero
Created and written by Jonathan Ames
Starring Patrick Stewart, Adrian Scarborough, Richard Lewis, Jacki Weaver, Timm Sharp, Dolly Wells, Karan Soni, Mary Holland
Air Date: Saturday, August 22nd, 2015, 9:00pm
Walter Blunt is a little bit of Will McAvoy from Newsroom, with the addictions and demons of Dr. House, and a lifestyle straight out of Shameless. If you like any or all of these shows, then Blunt Talk may just be for you. Patrick Stewart is Walter Blunt, the host of nightly cable news show who is dangerous addicted to… well, pretty much anything. As we learn in the first episode of Starz’s new half hour comedy (free now on Starz), Blunt is a 4x divorcee, estranged father, who is constantly supplied fresh flasks of alcohol and drugs from his manservant and best friend Harry (Adrian Scarborough). Despite the seriousness of the addictions, and his arrest early in the episode, Stewart is absolutely hilarious and believable in the role, and I was laughing constantly. The show was created and written by Jonathan Ames (Bored to Death) and is executive produced by Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane amongst others.
Watch the Blunt Talk featurette below, and beware of spoilers!
We open with Blunt sitting in a bar getting drunk before taking to his car. When he notices a prostitute get thrown down by an angry guy, he tipsily asks if she’s okay, which leads to a “date.” When his “lady of the night” turns out to be a bit more, she asks if that bothers him and he deadpan answers, “No, I’m English.” There are no limits to the one-liners. When the cops interrupt, he ends up in a ridiculous chase/battle with them, ending with reciting Hamlet on the top of his Jaguar at gunpoint.
The rest of the episode deals with how he, his team, and the network are going to deal with his legal situation. He coaxes his boss to let him on the air that night (by offering his Jag), so he can conduct an exclusive interview with… himself. But before and during that, he needs to meet with a therapist (the always great Richard Lewis), get flogged by Harry in his private “loo,” and spoon with his assistant Rosalie (Oscar nominee, Jacki Weaver). He also almost ODs on Ambien and does lines of cocaine. Good thing he is cleaning up for his confession show.
There is a lot of excess just in episode 1 of Blunt Talk, but one of those excesses is Patrick Stewart. His ability to command the screen and deliver the one-liners is perfect. Few actors can pull off interviewing themselves, while coked out of their minds. His relationships and dialogues with his underlings, and especially Harry, are great. I can’t wait to watch episode 2… OH WAIT, that’s also free on Starz!
Blunt Talk will premiere on the Starz network on Saturday night, August 22nd at 9:00pm ET. The first two episodes are free for viewing, for a limited time on their website.