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Webcam: Jay Harrington on being 'Better Off Ted'

June 26, 2009 | 10:23 am

Midseason replacement "Better Off Ted" earned some enviable reviews with Ken Tucker of Entertainment Weekly calling the show "the most original sitcom to come along in a while." Jay Harrington ("Desperate Housewives") stars as a cog in the corporate machine with Portia de Rossi ("Arrested Development") as an office rival and Andrea Anders ("Joey") as a potential romantic interest. The ABC single-camera comedy aired only seven episodes but is slated to return in the fall. 

Reviewing the first episode, Matthew Gilbert of the Boston Globe said, "'Better off Ted' is loaded with potential. The writing has some of the gonzo wit that fuels the General Electric sendups on '30 Rock.' And there are glimmers of the cubicle-culture surrealism that has flourished on 'The Office' and on one of Victor Fresco's earlier series, the excellent 'Andy Richter Controls the Universe.'" For Robert Bianco of USA Today, "Amusing lines fly back and forth, delivered with skill by a first-rate cast." And while Mary McNamara of the Los Angeles Times expressed some reservations about the show, she thought, "Harrington is handsome and sexy in a deadpan, user-friendly way."

Ted is the voice of reason in this crazy world, and he breaks the fourth wall to talk directly to the audience. Says Jay Harrington, "Hopefully it works because we are moving so fast." And as the actor explains, Ted is also a single dad to a young daughter "which gives the character sympathy for the audience to then go with him on this weird journeys and the decisions that he makes as it is ultimately for her benefit."

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