TV News

Viva The Year of Penny: ABC Orders a Sitcom Pilot From Casey Wilson, June Diane Raphael & Happy Endings’ Co-Showrunner

You remember how when ABC canceled Happy Endings they put on a public face of remorse and regret, claiming to have loved the show and deeply saddened it never found a big enough audience to make keeping it around a wise business decision?  

The cast of Happy Endings flashing fake smiles as they listen to ABC network executives praising the show as a build-up to announcing its cancellation.

Well, that may not have been total and complete b.s. to placate the show’s fanbase.  They appear to legitimately want to keep doing business with many of people from the show.  Happy Endings exeuctive producer/co-showrunner Jonathan Groff (and no, he is not the same Jonathan Groff from Spring Awakenings/Glee) has a production deal with ABC Studios, and Happy Endings star Casey Wilson and her writing partner/fellow actress June Diane Raphael landed a deal with ABC Studios last month to develop new shows and possibly star in some for the studio.

Now, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Groff, Wilson, and Raphael worked quickly on their respective production deals and came together to pitch an idea to ABC for a sitcom centered “around a 30-something couple who straddles the line between life with kids and single life without them.”  The working title?  DINKS (a.k.a. Double Income, No Kids).  ABC liked it enough to order a pilot.  All three parties will produce the show, with Wilson and Raphael writing the pilot script.  It’s unclear if either actress will also star in the show.  Part of their deal with ABC Studios stipulates that in addition to writing Raphael will also star in a show for ABC at some point in the future, which might be fulfilled since she has already been cast alongside Kristen Schaal and Jenny Slate as one of the three female leads in ABC’s adaptation of the British sitcom Pulling.

Hey, wait a minute.  Didn’t I just write about Wilson/Raphael yesterday?  Yep, I sure did, in this reaction to the trailer for Wilson/Raphael’s upcoming film Ass Backwards.  So, from my perspective it’s been a busy 24 hours for Wilson and Raphael.

Wilson and Raphael are still most known for their acting, Wilson on SNL/Happy Endings and Raphael on Party Down, NTSF:SD:SUV, Burning Love, New Girl.  However, they’ve also co-written the screenplays for the regrettable film Bride Wars and, of course, the upcoming Ass Backwards, and developed multiple television sitcoms in the past which ultimately did not get picked up to series.

At the moment, not much more is known about DINKS (traditional multi-camera, laugh track sitcom vs. single camera, how many characters, etc.), and like every other TV pilot, regardless of talent/producer pedigree, it’s almost guaranteed to fail considering how many get made versus the tiny portion that actually get picked up to series. However, even it’s a minute one there is now much more of a chance today than there was yesterday of seeing see Wilson and/or Raphael starring in a sitcom on ABC as early as a year from now.  For you Happy Endings fans, that’s amahzing. 

A Casey Wilson-centric promo for Happy Endings:

Raphael can be seen in the current season of NTSF:SD:SUV on Adult Swim, and Raphael and Wilson’s female road trip comedy Ass Backwards is due to come out on video on demand on September 30 with an early November limited theatrical release.

What do you think?  Does DINKS sound amahzing?  Or too thin a concept to truly fly?  Or it doesn’t matter because there’s not even a script yet, and we are so far away from ever possibly seeing this show it’s harder to muster much of a reaction one way or another at this point?  Let us know in the comments.

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