There were several great new TV shows that debuted during the fall 2010/spring 2011 TV season. None made me laugh quite like Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant’s creation, An Idiot Abroad. The gist of the show is that Gervais and Merchant send their friend, Karl Pilkington, around the globe to visit each of the 7 Wonders of the World. You may recognize Pilkington as the orange-headed character from HBO’s The Ricky Gervais Show. Along the way to visiting the 7 Wonders, Gervais and Merchant concoct multiple hilarious and bizarre activities for Pilkington to partake in while staying in the various host countries. The resulting video footage is then edited into a travelogue show. The activities are amusing enough, but the true humor comes from Pilkington’s reactions. While performing the activities, he espouses a sort of brilliant moron zen, accidentally stumbling upon odd nuggets of truth, and it’s all coupled with ridiculous facial reactions. I’ve put together a sampling of Pilkington’s facial reactions, titled “The Many Faces of Karl Pilkington”.
The second season of An Idiot Abroad starts this Saturday January 21 at 10 p.m. EST on The Science Channel. This time, Merchant and Gervais are sending Karl out into the world with a bucket list of things to do before he dies.