I’m trying to think of a way to describe the Netflix show Love. It’s not as easy as I thought it would be.
Let me tell you what it is. It is a Netflix original series which has two seasons so far. 10 episodes in the first season, from last year, and 12 episodes in the second, which dropped recently. It has also been picked up for a third season, and for good reason: it is a good show.
Judd Apatow is one of the executive producers on the show, and is also co-creator along with the husband-and-wife team of Paul Rust and Leslie Arfin. This is a romantic comedy and it shares many of the same traits in common with other Apatow productions, which means it can be funny and brutally honest in equal measure, and that it doesn’t shy away from the profane. All good things, in my opinion.
Co-creator Paul Rust stars as Gus Cruikshank, an on-set tutor with aspirations of becoming a screenwriter, who falls for troubled Mickey Dobbs, played to the hilt by the wonderful Gillian Jacobs. It is their love that is the focus of Love, and it’s not always easy to watch. Life is not a typical Hollywood romantic comedy, and this show seems to be trying to tell us that. These characters, and the characters who move like satellites around them, are all flawed, and the course of true love never runs true.
This Truth is what makes this series resonate with me. At times, it is beautiful and touching. At other times, it is heartbreaking. You will find yourself, like me, rooting for things to work out between Mickey and Gus, even though the odds don’t always seem to be in their favor.
Other standouts in the cast include Australian Claudia O’Doherty, who plays Bertie, Mickey’s roommate. She’s a constant chirpy delight. Dave Allen—who played guidance counselor Jeff Russo on Apatow’s classic Freaks and Geeks—also has a recurring role as one of Gus’s apartment neighbors and friend. Brett Gelman, who seems to be everywhere these days, is also on this show, playing a douchebag radio psychologist.
This show makes me laugh. It also makes me think about my own life at times, and to contemplate on the sometimes confusing nature of love and couplehood. At its heart, Love speaks truth. Maybe not THE truth, but certainly A truth.
Watch it. It’s not a waste of time.