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6 Reasons You Should Be Watching Ricky Gervais' Netflix Series Derek

Ricky Gervais

The world would be a better place if we were all a little more like Derek Noakes, the titular character of Netflix's British import Derek.

That may be a surprising notion, given that Derek — a simple-minded man who works in an old-age home in Britain — is the creation of Ricky Gervais, whose stand-up comedy and past work on shows like The Office and Extras can be biting, to say the least. Even Gervais admits thatDerek, which he describes plainly (and accurately) as "a show about kindness," is less a departure from his previous projects and more a complete rejection of them.

"In recent years — and I'm culpable; I may even be one of the major driving forces in it — there's been a comedy of embarrassment, of excruciating social faux pas, the minutiae of human behavior, and usually the bad side," Gervais, who plays the lead role of Derek in addition to writing and directing the series, told TVGuide.com last week. "What's slightly different about [Derek] is, all those comedies and all the characters I've created before were sort of laughing at the blind spot, laughing at the difference between how the characters see themselves and how we see them. And with this, I've closed that blind spot. People are more sincere and more honest. ... The big theme is that kindness trumps everything."

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The Thursday Playlist: Burn Notice and Other Finales, Derek on Netflix

Ricky Gervais

Fans often feel burned when the final curtain falls on a favorite show — especially when it happens unexpectedly and without resolution (just ask fans of A&E's The Glades or, even more recently, AMC's The Killing, which at least solved its third-season case before the grim fadeout). This is not the situation with USA's Burn Notice, which has been leading all summer to a calculated big finish (Thursday, 9/8c) after seven seasons of... read more

Exclusive: Science Channel's Slate Includes First Scripted Project and New Karl Pilkington Show

Karl Pilkington

Science Channel has picked up the new docuseries The Moaning of Life, featuring An Idiot Abroad star (and Ricky Gervais sidekick) Karl Pilkington in a new set of adventures.

The Moaning of Life is part of a new slate of programs for the... read more

Ricky Gervais' New Netflix Sitcom Derek About the Elderly Is Sweet, Not Cruel

Ricky Gervais

Ricky Gervais may have enjoyed being the "most feared man in Hollywood" when he notoriously offended many as a the host of the Golden Globes, but he insists that his new sitcom Derek, set in a nursing home, is "sweeter" than his usual fare.

Derek, an original series to premiere on Netflix sometime this year, won't target the elderly with Gervais' sardonic wit. The show's humor doesn't lie in mocking them, but rather in taking jabs at the callous outside world and its marginalization of the elderly. It's certainly not an obvious topic for humor, but Gervais hopes that viewers will give the show a chance.

"I think there's risk of people not watching it because of assumptions that it was cruel," he said at Netflix's winter TV previews on Wednesday. "There's risk that they don't get it. Or that they get it and don't like it. ... I haven't felt this excited and proud of a project since The Office. That's the truth of it."

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VIDEO: Check Out the Teaser for Ricky Gervais' New Web Series

Ricky Gervais

Ricky Gervais will release the pilot episode of his new web series, Learn English with Ricky Gervais, later this month for free on iTunes, according to a teaser video released for the project.

The tongue-in-cheek series will feature Gervais and his frequent collaborator Karl Pilkington examining the nuances of the English language. "This is the worst English lesson ever," Gervais says in the video clip, barely able to keep a straight face.

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Exclusive: Science Sets Premiere Date for Ricky Gervais' An Idiot Abroad 2

Ricky Gervais

U.S. viewers will finally get to see where Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant sent their dimwitted pal Karl Pilkington for a second trip around the world. read more

Exclusive: Science Officially Orders Season 2 of Ricky Gervais' An Idiot Abroad

An Idiot Abroad

Ricky Gervais' pal Karl Pilkington has proven to be quite the useful Idiot for Science. The cable network is set to announce Thursday that it has secured the second season of hit series An Idiot Abroad.

For season two, Gervais and Stephen Merchant are again sending the dimwitted Pilkington on a trip around the world — but this time to tackle a "bucket list" of things to do before you die.

Unlike season one, which was produced first in the U.K. and later acquired by... read more

HBO Renews The Ricky Gervais Show

The Ricky Gervais Show

HBO has renewed The Ricky Gervais Show for a third season.

The animated comedy series, based on the podcast of the same name, is voiced by Gervais, Stephen Merchant and Karl Pilkington, who riff ...
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Science Channel Plans April Fool's Marathon and Twittercast of Ricky Gervais' An Idiot Abroad

An Idiot Abroad

They're no dummies at the Science Channel. The cable network's smart move to acquire and run Ricky Gervais' U.K. series An Idiot Abroad has resulted in the channel's highest ratings ever.

To celebrate, the channel plans to run a marathon of all eight An Idiot Abroad episodes — plus a 30-minute preview special — from 2:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. on April Fool's Day (Friday, April 1).

Science Channel will also debut its first-ever Twitter event during the marathon: Starting at 8 p.m. that night, the channel will run Tweets from viewers (via the hashtag #AnIdiotAbroad) at the... read more

Ricky Gervais: An Idiot Abroad’s Karl Pilkington is "My Gift to The World"

Ricky Gervais

How did Ricky Gervais' next show, An Idiot Abroad, wind up on The Science Channel? Thank Karl Pilkington.

Fans of Gervais and Stephen Merchant's popular podcast (and subsequent HBO series) already know Pilkington is the pair's friend and longtime punching bag. In An Idiot Abroad — billed by the network as "the most elaborate practical joke-turned-social experiment in television history" — Gervais and Merchant send him to see the Seven Wonders of the world.

VIDEO: First look at Ricky Gervais' new series

Gervais explained why Pilkington has the makings of a Science Channel star. "Karl sees things very differently from the rest of us," he said via satellite Thursday during the Television Critics Association's winter previews. "He does investigate, he does do what science does and... read more

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