The highly anticipated start of season three of Louie kicks off tonight at 10:30 on FX. As a diehard Louis C.K. fan, I can only hope that this season resembles the first more than the second. In season one, viewers of Louie were treated to a brutally honest look at the comedic style of the bald, red-goateed comic, who describes his flabby physique as “function only.” Unlike his first foray into television—HBO’s Lucky Louie—FX’s Louie appears poised to stay around for at least a little while, assuming the show can match its early successes.
However, if season three plays out in the same manner as its immediate predecessor, this summer could hold some serious disappointment for Louis C.K. fans. Although it’s something of a heresy to say so, season two was a far cry from the hilarity of the previous one. Dare I venture to say it was bad? Perhaps that may be a stretch, as there were a few memorable scenes from even that inferior set of episodes, such as this, where Louie has a debate with an evangelical Christian about masturbation on Fox News:
On the whole, season two was long on sensitivity and short on laughs. Whereas the first was characterized by several outrageous moments that nonetheless occurred well within the bounds of believability, the second felt palpably different in both style and tone, as Louis C.K. himself took over the directing of the show. It was more deliberate and touching, or at least it tried to be. While no doubt many Louie viewers found it just as engaging as the previous season, viewers expecting a dose of classic Louis C.K. comedy were frequently left disappointed by the lack of absurdist humor to which they were accustomed, such as this hilarious scene guest-starring Ricky Gervais:
Whether Louie will return to its roots or continue along the new path forged in the second season will be answered soon. Season three begins tonight at 10:30 on FX