Since I finished Seasons 1 and 2 of 30 Rock in record time, I found myself in need of a replacement comedy to watch over the summer. Based on friends’ recommendations, the decision came down to Two and a Half Men or My Name Is Earl.
I’d never seen an episode of either show prior to choosing, so I based my selection solely on the premise of the shows. I thought that a reformed crook trying to change his karma by righting the wrongs he’s committed in his life sounded pretty interesting, so I went with My Name Is Earl.
I borrowed the Season 1 DVDs from a friend, and have watched the first few eps already. I have to say that this is one of the few shows that I’ve liked right off the bat! Usually it takes several episodes in order to start warming up to the characters, but not with MNIE. Even though I’ve never been a big fan of Jason Lee, I think he’s great as Earl, and the supporting cast is pretty good as well.
In case you’ve never seen My Name Is Earl, I’ll briefly explain the premise. It’s about a petty crook named Earl Hickey (Lee) who wins $100,000 on a scratch-off lottery ticket. As he’s celebrating his win, however, he gets mowed down by a car, loses the ticket, and ends up in the hospital — where he sees Carson Daly talking about karma on TV. Earl realizes that he has bad karma, so he makes a list of all the things he’s ever done wrong, and will correct each and every one of them.
After Earl rights the first wrong, he finds his winning ticket, which cements his belief in karma.
Instead of buying a flashy new car or spending a week in one of those luxurious Hilton Head rentals on a prime golf course, Earl just moves into a seedy motel with his brother Randy (Ethan Suplee) and uses his money for regular daily expenses. This setup should allow the show to continue for a good, long time.
I really like My Name Is Earl so far and am looking forward to finishing the rest of these DVDs!