Comedian Louis C.K. Shakes Up TV With ‘Horace And Pete’

Louis C.K. at Comedy Central's "Night of Too Many Stars: America Comes Together for Autism Programs." (Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)

Louis C.K. at Comedy Central’s “Night of Too Many Stars: America Comes Together for Autism Programs.” (Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)

Louis C.K., the talented comedian with Boston roots, has a new TV show. You might have missed the launch — because Louis C.K. released it without fanfare on his website recently.

It’s about deep family dysfunction, family decline and a family-owned bar in Brooklyn called “Horace and Pete’s,” which is the name of the show.

It has a terrific cast, including Louis C.K., Steve Buscemi, Edie Falco, Jessica Lang and Alan Alda — with an original theme song by Paul Simon.

It’s also not a comedy — in one of his first emails about the show, Louis C.K. argued that, “‘Funny’ works best in its natural habitat. Right in the jungle along with ‘awful,’ ‘sad,’ ‘confusing’ and ‘nothing’.”

So, what does this very unusual show mean for television?


Ian Crouch, Boston-based web writer and producer at The New Yorker. He tweets @iancrouch.


The New Yorker: ‘Horace and Pete’ Is Louis C.K.’s Most Audacious Independent Creation Yet

  • “For several years, C.K. has used a simple distribution model, by which he releases many of his projects, primarily comedy specials, directly to fans through his Web site, at a cost of five dollars. (This includes the plain request that people not be assholes, and pay for it rather than steal it.) This sort of industry eye-poke has further endeared him to his fans, who see C.K. not only as a comedy visionary but a no-nonsense disrupter and rebel.”

A.V. Club: Horace And Pete Explores Marriage, Divorce, And Self-Destruction

  • “The third episode of Horace And Pete opens on a woman (Laurie Metcalf) telling a story to someone out of frame. We don’t know who this woman is, or to whom she’s talking, or how she connects to any of the established characters, but we know she’s confessing something. For nine straight minutes, this woman describes how she became intimate with her husband’s 84-year-old father while staying at their family’s Pennsylvania house in quotidian, Cheever-esque detail.”

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