If you've never seen the British show Coupling, trust me, it's hilarious. For the uninitiated, the show is a cross between the now-defunct Friends and "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus." And it's funny. Damn funny. Laugh-out-loud-so-loud-your-neighbor-knocks-on-the-door-to-complain-but-decides-to-join-you-and-laugh-so-hard-your-other-neighbor-complains funny. If you haven't seen it, seriously, watch it. It's better than most of the reality-bites crap on TV now.
There was a pitiful attempt to bring it to the American airwaves, but, frankly, the casting is so perfect on the other side of the Atlantic, it really was just destin for failure. Last week, I decided that catching random episodes on BBC America just wasn't good enough. I broke down and bought the entire series on DVD.
I got home late last night (as you may have inferred by the early morning post) and was greeted with the excitement of a package. I don't know what gets me so excited about that little key and that cardboard box. Maybe it goes back to those care packages from camp where my mother made me food and snacks. It's almost the only food I ever remember getting when I was away back then...or was that college? Whichever...you get the idea.
So, I brought in the package, furiously ripped apart the packing tape and found my four-season box set of Coupling. Within the span of 15 seconds I had the DVD in the player and was listening to that great little song, "Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps..." Then I got to the DVD menu and realized something. There were only 5 to 9 episodes per season. While my West Wing DVDs can keep me busy for an entire day or two per season, British television just isn't the same!
I started scanning the DVDs and discovered something else. Something horrible. Something that you never want to discover when you buy a new DVD from a television show. I had already seen all of the episodes on BBC America. I don't mean, I saw all the episodes in the first season. No, that would have still given me three more seasons of hilarious entertainment. I mean I saw all the episodes in the entire series.
That's not to say I didn't watch them again and they weren't funny this time, but it's just not the same. Watching an episode of Coupling for the second time makes you laugh at the things you laughed at before. But it's almost like an attempt to capture the pure, unadulturated hysteria that took over the first time you watched the episode. Once you've lost your Coupling virginity, there's simply no going back.
So, if you haven't watched the show yet, look for it on BBC America or pick up the first season on DVD from Amazon or dvdpricesearch.com. Sit back and get ready to laugh hysterically. You might even want to invite a friend so you have someone to enjoy it with. But make sure you take the proper precautions because once you've seen it, it's still good, but there's no going back to your first time.