The new ‘Odd Couple’ – Was it really necessary?
Last Thursday night on CBS, before we said goodbye to Two and a Half Men, we said hello to the new Odd Couple starring Mathew Perry as Oscar Madison and Thomas Lennon as Felix Unger. If you've seen both versions of the show, you have to ask yourself, was this second couple really necessary?
The Two and A Half Men finale really aired the week before they wrap up the story lines of Allan moving in with Lindsey, Waldon ends up with his adopted son Lewis social worker and they all live happily ever after. The last two-part episode was really nothing more than a final parting shot at Charlie Sheen.
When you think of it though, Sheen and Jon Cryer who played Allan Harper, made a much better Odd Couple than Perry and Lennon. In fact at one point, TV Guide even cast the two in the Oscar and Felix roles on it’s cover.
It’s hard enough to remake a television series, with some having success like Hawaii 5-0, while others fail. I think the latest version of The Odd Couple falls in the latter category. It seems to me like Perry and Lennon are two actors just playing roles while Jack Klugman and Tony Randle made you believe they lived their lives as Oscar and Felix. Oddly enough, I once got the opportunity to interview Tony Randall who admitted that he was much more of an 'Oscar' type character rather than the character he portrayed, Felix Unger.
The truth is, we don’t really need another 'Odd Couple' because it really never left in the first place. The concept of two completely different men living together has been a strong part of TV over the years. Sitcoms such as Perfect Strangers with the characters Balky and Larry, to 'Frasier's' Frasier and Niles and even more recently, Charlie and Alan on Two and a Half Men.
I think after watching the first episode of the new Odd Couple, there is no better way to sum it up than in the words of the 'original' Oscar, Jack Klugman. Oscar Madison summed it up best in the “Password” episode when he said “Aristophanes” is ridiculous!