AUSTIN, Texas — At the ATX TV Festival, HBO’s “The Comeback” was still very much an object of TV fan adoration. Lisa Kudrow, Michael Patrick King, Dan Bucatinsky, and Laura Silverman joined moderator Abigail Spencer to reminisce about the fan-favorite comedy, and how the show returned to do a second season ten years after the first run.
They began the panel by taking a moment to pay tribute to Robert Michael Morris, who played Mickey Dean, Valerie’s hair stylist and confidant. Morris was supposed to join the group at ATX but passed away May 30.
“He’s the only person who could have played that part,” said Bucatinsky.
Kudrow made it clear that though the show was shot documentary style, “It was not about my experience on ‘Friends.'” She added, “I did send the writers cookies, but that’s because I love cookies, not so they’d write me more stuff.” King confessed that Valerie Cherish was based on two actresses he knows in real life, but he didn’t divulge names.
When “The Comeback” was cancelled after one season, King said, “It was very confusing for us. Over the years, we got the salve of people elevating the show.” Bucatinsky added, “It became a cult show. Writers talked about it in writers’ rooms.”
But after a “bad breakup,” as they put it, HBO approached them for a second season, and King fondly recalled the fun they had shooting the second season after such a long hiatus. “I felt like I was at an amusement park with my friends,” he said.
Does this mean there will be more of “The Comeback?” “It’s always a possibility,” said Kudrow. King claimed he could envision Valerie lost in the world of today’s tiny, fragmented networks. “TV is so desperate now,” he said. “It’s finally caught up to Valerie.”