The Atlantic

What Crashing Got Right About Stand-Up

Pete Holmes’s HBO series continually confounded expectations, all the way up to its comedy-free season finale.
Source: HBO

For a show about the slow, slow rise of a stand-up comedian, Sunday’s season finale of Crashing was an odd one. It took place largely at an adult baptism, featured zero scenes of stand-up comedy, and pointedly had very little to do with the emotional development of its lead character Pete (as played by real-life comedian Pete Holmes). It ended with Pete having barely progressed since hitting rock bottom in the first episode—still broke, essentially homeless, without any meaningful career prospects, and entirely on the outs with his ex-wife Jessica (Lauren Lapkus).

It was a confounding approach to take considering a TV season usually depicts a grand arc of some sort. If considered briefly, Crashing

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