Following its run on British television, Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant's latest comedy 'Life's Too Short' made its debut on American screens last night, February 19th, airing on the HBO network. Starring Warwick Davis - a former 'Star Wars' ewok - the show works in a documentary format which follows the increasingly jobless actor on his daily travails.
With Gervais' stock in America currently debatable following his recently Golden Globe hosting performances, it's fair to say that a lot rides on the success of his latest program - and the response from the critics so far as been fairly positive. Most effusive with praise were The Wall Street Journal, who led with "The real Messrs. Gervais and Merchant haven't lost their touch with self-humiliating characters." The New York Times and Post were both complimentary too, the former stating "What's different about Life's Too Short, and what makes it watchable, is that Mr. Davis - who portrayed Filius Flitwick in the "Harry Potter" films, as well as multiple "Star Wars" Ewoks - is so good at playing Mr. Gervais's stock character," with the latter adding "Either you'll laugh out loud, knowing that Davis helped create this, or call for Gervais' head--probably in a garbage pail," in reference to Gervais' divisive style of comedy.
It wasn't all good though, The Huffington Post for one were particularly scathing in their criticism, saying, "There is awkwardness and idiocy on display in Life's Too Short, which stars actor Warwick Davis as a hopefully inaccurate version of himself, but almost none of it is funny, much of it is off-putting and all of it is pointless." It remains to be seen how it faired in the ratings