Why People Are Talking About ‘The Rehearsal’ on HBO

If you’re here, you’ve probably seen or seen something about The Rehearsal, a bizarre and ambitious new HBO series from comedian Nathan Fielder. Maybe you have met tweets referencing the show or located the title by searching in The HBO Max catalog.

Fielder is also known for his Comedy Central show Nathan for You, which saw him “think outside the box” to help small businesses succeed – his ideas ranging from selling alcohol to minors (but sticking to it all the way). ‘at the age of 21) opening a parody store called Dumb Starbucks. The series ran from 2013 to 2017.

On his latest show, which premiered July 15, Fielder “allows ordinary people to prepare for life’s greatest moments by ‘rehearsing’ them in carefully crafted simulations of his own design,” according to the official synopsis. from HBO.

Here’s a beginner’s guide to The Rehearsal, including what it is, why people are talking about it, and when you can listen to the fifth and six episodes.

What is The Rehearsal about?

On The Rehearsal, Fielder sets up ridiculous, over-the-top rehearsals that allow people to walk through moments in their lives before they happen. For example, in the first episode, he orchestrates a rehearsal for a middle-aged man named Kor, who seeks to confess a longtime secret to a friend.

How much of a repeat are we talking about? Well, Kor’s practice rounds involve the place where he plans to meet his quiz bar friend – a bar in Brooklyn called Alligator Lounge. Fielder builds a “perfect replica” of the bar, right down to the exact spices on the bar’s spice racks. (A crew member reportedly told him that the fake establishment probably cost more to make than the real bar.) Kor rehearses his bomb-drop with an actress—a doppelganger who replaces his friend. Later, the real encounter between the two friends plays out on screen, and we eagerly watch to see if all that outrageous rehearsal paid off.

Repetition doesn’t really adhere to this structure of repetition and then reality after that, though. This soon becomes harder to pin down, especially as Fielder begins to insert himself into rehearsals.

After the first four episodes, the show sits at an impressive score of 86 on CNET’s sister site Metacritic.

Is the rehearsal real or scripted?

Fielder (center) is seated in the background.

HBO

From what we’ve seen so far, the answer is yes and no. The rehearsal seems to include both hired actors and non-actors, snatched from places like Craigslist, who are interested in participating in Fielder’s experiment. In the first episode, Fielder says in a voiceover that Kor had responded to a post from Craigslist. Alternatively, he calls the person playing the fake version of Kor’s friend bar trivia an actress. Basically, a distinction is made in some way between actors and people who repeat moments of their lives.

Here is another example. In Episode 3, Fielder refers to a man named Patrick (for those who’ve seen the show, he’s the guy from Raising Canes) as “that guy I met”. Patrick wants to have a talk with his brother regarding their grandfather’s will, and Fielder arranges for Patrick to practice with an actor who replaces the brother.

That being said, we have yet to see the final episodes. Some people have speculated that the whole show might be a rehearsal and those we think are non-actors are actually actors.

“Does anyone think there’s a chance we’re coming to the end of The Rehearsal and Nathan explaining that the whole show was fake the whole time?” a Twitter user wrote.

Why are people talking about the show?

There are several reasons why you may have heard of The Rehearsal lately. Fans praise the show for being very original, breathtaking and completely crazy. It lends itself to theories, like the one mentioned above, and laughable memes. It also propelled some provocative people into the spotlight.

However, the show and Fielder also drew criticism for the treatment of attendees.

“The look of superiority and dominance (Fielder) cast upon Kor struck me as arrogant, cruel and, above all, indifferent,” reviewer Richard Brody wrote of his experience watching the show’s first episode in his article. New Yorker The Cruel and Arrogant Gaze. from “The Rehearsal” by Nathan Fielder. Yet other reviewers have called The Rehearsal “wonderfully strange and fascinating”, brilliant and moving.

How many episodes will there be?

There are six episodes of The Rehearsal in total. The first episode aired on July 15. Four have been released so far.

When is the next rehearsal?

The show’s fifth episode will air on HBO and HBO Max at 11 p.m. ET on Friday, August 12. The show’s finale will drop at the same time on Friday, August 19.

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