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DVD Review: Gary Unmarried – The Complete First Season

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Written by Pirata Hermosa

Gary Brooks (Jay Mohr) is an average working guy with two kids. He has just recently divorced his wife, Allison (Paula Marshall). It doesn’t take Gary long to bounce back, and being that he is somewhat of a playboy, he immediately has a new girlfriend, Vanessa (Jaime King).

Even though the two are divorced, Gary finds himself having to hide his new girlfriend because he promised to follow the advice of their former marriage counselor, Dr. Krandall (Ed Begley Jr.). And that advice is to not get involved right away in any new relationships as it could adversely affect the children. But Gary’s charade doesn’t last long when he finds out that Allison is not only dating, but her new boyfriend is Dr. Krandall.

While this appears to be just another typical sitcom it actually has its own spin on the genre. Gary and Allison have a fairly amicable divorce and as the season plays out you can see that the reason that the two have separated isn’t because they don’t love one another, but more because of Gary’s inability to mature causing them to grow apart. This also is a downfall of the characters as their new partners will find it difficult to accept such attachment to a former spouse.

The chemistry between the two exes is very strong and the main reason the show works. Even when they are in a heated argument, which is usually based on something stupid Gary does, the love/hate aspect pulls it all together.

There’s also a lot of play on boundaries, and what they are after having once been married to someone. How are in-laws supposed to react towards their former daughter/son-in-law? Is it possible for ex-wife and new girlfriend to be friends? And what about dating your counselor?

The casting of the characters is also very good. While Mohr is best known as a smartass comedian, he does an excellent job of playing the lovable goof. Begley Jr. is also another great casting choice as his quirkiness and strange mannerisms make him fun to watch no matter what he is doing.

There are four Special Features on the DVD.

"The Chemistry of Comedy" -The cast and crew discuss the basic idea of the show, how it works, the chemistry between Gary and Allison, and the writing process of the episodes.

"Planet Begley" – is a look into Ed Begley Jr.’s world of “Green Living.” His fellow cast members comment on his unique living style and the film crew takes a look at his eco-friendly home powered by solar electricity.

"Tuesday on the Set with Jay" – The star takes the fans through a behind-the-scenes tour of the entire set, interspersed with live shooting and clips from the show. The clips are a little distracting as they appear to be missing frames, giving it a choppy appearance.

"Gary Unhinged Bloopers from Season One" – A typical blooper reel that shows Mohr has a hard time remembering the names of his ex-wife and girlfriend. Once again, the clips used are choppy.

In 2009 the show won the People’s Choice Award for Best New Comedy, which is an impressive feat on its own, because it doesn't seem to receive nearly the amount of advertisement as most of the others. If you haven’t had a chance to watch it yet, then I’d suggest getting the first season of Gary Unmarried. You won’t be sorry.

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