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Series / Togetherness

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A comedy-drama created by brothers Mark and Jay Duplass, first aired in 2015 on HBO.

Brett and Michelle Pierson are a married couple in their late 30s living in Los Angeles with their young children. Brett is a professional sound recordist for movies; Michelle loves him, but has great difficulty in finding him sexually attractive. Brett's best friend Alex Pappas is a tubby, balding, talented-but-unsuccessful actor, who's beginning to think that maybe a movie career is not going to happen for him; Michelle's sister Tina is a sexually confident businesswoman who deals in bouncy houses. For financial reasons, Alex and Tina are left without homes and are forced to move in with Brett and Michelle — hence the title.


The show focuses on two main threads: the Piersons' increasingly desperate attempts to hold their marriage together, and the Unresolved Sexual Tension between unglamorous but basically nice Alex and glamorous but confused Tina.

In January 2015, the show was renewed for a second season. In April 2016, HBO announced that the show would not be renewed for a third season.

Togetherness contains the following tropes:

  • Adorkable: Brett is this, stopping in the middle of an LA street to record a songbird on his phone.
  • British Brevity: Enforced by HBO cancelling the show after only two seasons.
  • Informed Ability: Averted with Alex, in that although we don't see him act, we do see him suddenly and convincingly adopt a character in order to extricate Tina from an embarrassing social situation.
    • By season two, Alex has a leading role in a movie.
  • Kinky Spanking: Brett and Michelle try erotic spanking in 'Handcuffs'. It goes horribly wrong.
  • Moment Killer: When Alex hits it off with a cute teacher who happens to be one of Tina's friends, Tina contrives what Alex later describes, with some justice, as "the biggest cockblock in the history of cockblocks".
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  • Mood Whiplash: The show likes to take comic situations and play them for all the drama it can wring out of them, the classic example is Brett and Michelle's catastrophic sex scene in 'Houston, We Have A Problem'.

Example of: