Extras, the BBC HBO situation comedy is the only place where you will see nun Kate Winslett giving advice on how to talk dirty on the phone. The two seasons of this British sitcom starring Ricky Gervais airs on The Comedy Network starting January 22, 2008. Other guest stars on the Extras series include Patrick Stewart, Ben Stiller, Daniel Radcliffe, Orlando Bloom, Bowie, and Samuel L. Jackson. If this is not enough to set your TV timer to The Comedy Network for Tuesdays at 10, I don't know what is.
Ricky Gervais plays Andy Millman, a wannabe actor who can only get walk on roles. This does allow him to hang around the set with pal Maggie (Ashley Jenson) and bask in the light of the famous he encounters on the sets. Like most other BBC situation comedies, Extras features some excellent writing and the kind of dark humor you will never get on prime time network TV. For example, the movie everybody is working on is a WW II Nazi concentration camp thing or about the Bosnian genocide, advice Andy gives Maggie is along the line of never going out with a man whose wife and family have been slaughtered, and an extra asks for a supplement while she has a bullet hole in her head.
Extras also seems to have a thing for poking fun at the "challenged".
Of course, some of the laughs in this sitcom come from more mundane sources like how to avoid party invitations and such. Also, the guest stars on Extras really get to play against type, ham it up, and say some rather outrageous things (like Winslett admitting she is doing a Nazi movie because it is an instant Oscar getter). Stil, Stiller is his usual bland self.
One thing though, I am not sure if The Comedy Network is airing Extras in quite the right order. The Kate Winslett episode is third in the series but first in their line up. Not that it really matters and the Winslett's episode is much more interesting than Stiller's.
By the way, there is a typo in the opening: It should be HBO presentS not present.