Bored to Death

HBO (ended 2011)
Rate Show
1,078 votes
  • Episode Guide
  • S 3 : Ep 8

    Nothing I Can't Handle by Running Away

    Aired 11/28/11

  • S 3 : Ep 7

    Forget the Herring

    Aired 11/21/11

  • S 3 : Ep 6

    Two Large Pearls and a Bar of Gold

    Aired 11/14/11

  • S 3 : Ep 5

    I Keep Taking Baths Like Lady Macbeth

    Aired 11/7/11

  • S 3 : Ep 4

    We Could Sing a Duet

    Aired 10/31/11

  • Cast & Crew
  • Ted Danson

    George Christopher

  • Zach Galifianakis

    Ray Hueston

  • Jason Schwartzman

    Jonathan Ames

  • Heather Burns


  • Kristen Wiig

    Jennifer Gladwell

  • Photos (1)
  • show Description
  • "How he solves anything is a mystery." Jonathan Ames (Jason Schwartzman), a struggling Brooklyn writer with a drinking problem, tries to cope with his recent breakup with his girlfriend by reinventing his life. On a whim, Ames decides to emulate his idol novelists Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler by posing as a private detective and offering his services through an online ad. Soon enough, he takes on various cases of unwitting clients, satisfying some while failing others. The HBO original comedy is based on Jonathan Ames' short story of the same name, which is included in his book The Double Life is Twice as Good: Essays and Fiction and in McSweeney's Issue 24. The cable series also stars Ted Danson (Damages, Becker) as George Christopher, Jonathan's magazine editor, and Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover) as Ray Hueston, Jonathan's best friend.moreless

  • Top Contributor
  • neomichel

    User Score: 105


  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (101)

    • Jonathan Ames: Being a private detective is a chance to be brave. And getting in the ring is a chance to be brave. To test yourself. To feel alive.

    • Jonathan Ames: (at Smooch Cafe) There's all these mothers here, because in Brooklyn, women are very fertile. And there's lots of babies and strollers everywhere.

    • Jonathan Ames: (touring Fort Greene Park) The Williamsburgh Bank Building looms over this park. And I-- I called it once the most phallic building in the world.

    • Jason Schwartzman: I've always loved the private detective character. I always thought they were the coolest. And a lot of my favorite movies have private detectives in them. The ultimate one to me is Stolen Kisses, which is a Truffaut film.

    • Jonathan Ames: In the world of the show, we filmed all over Brooklyn. And we don't really obey the laws of the map. It's all one big mad neighborhood.

    • Jason Schwartzman: What I love about this show so much is like it's kind of a delicate infusion of life and fiction.

    • Ted Danson: There's not a mean bone or sarcastic bone in Jonathan Ames' body or in his writing. And there's such an innocence about him. At the same time, perverted, you know, but it's with this eager kind of smile of delving into these bizarre places.

    • Heather Burns: The chemistry between the characters is very charming.

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    Notes (89)

    • Original International Air Dates: • Latin America: December 14, 2009 on HBO Latinoamerica Este.

    • Original International Air Dates: • Latin America: December 21, 2009 on HBO Latinoamerica Este.

    • "Thank You" End Credits: Tammy Grella, Ben Guinta, Anjali Malhotra, Sandra Scott "Special Thanks" End Credits: Jason Schwartzman, Jonathan Ames, Sarah Condon, Anna Dokoza, Stephanie Davis, Rachel Rothblatt, The Cast & Crew of Bored to Death

    • The video of the episode is available, along with the show's promotional trailers and previews, on HBO's official website.

    • For the episode, special thanks were given to Jonathan Ames (creator/writer/executive producer), Sarah Condon (executive producer), Anna Dokoza, Anjali Malhotra, and to the cast & crew of Bored to Death.

    • International Episode Titles: Czech Republic: Stockolmský syndrom (Stockhoml Syndrome)

    • Original International Air Dates: • Latin America: November 22, 2009 on HBO Latinoamerica Este • Czech Republic: March 30, 2010 on HBO • Turkey: May 10, 2010 on e2 • United Kingdom: March 28, 2011 on Sky ATLANTIC/Sky ATLANTIC HD

    • In Jonathan's apartment, the books are all stacked on the floor, since Suzanne took the book shelves with her. The same thing happened to series writer Ames, who after five years had shelves again when the show's crew built some for him.

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    Trivia (13)

    • Some of the New York film locations mentioned in the episode are the Gowanus Canal, Brighton Beach, Red Hook, DUMBO, Coney Island, Park Slope, and Bay Ridge.

    • The speech bubbles between Ray's depiction of himself as a superhero therapy patient and of Jonathan as a therapist reads: Superhero Ray: I don't feel like anybody really knows me. Therapist Jonathan: I understand.

    • The text found inside the book in the opening credits reads: Private Detective For Hire Reply to: Date: 2007-04-13, 8:31AM EST Specializing: Missing Persons, Domestic issues. I'm not licensed, but I'm someone who can help you. My fee is reasonable. Call 347-555-1042

    • Big Nose Reference: George mentions to Jonathan that he saw a woman who looked exactly like "that actress in the Almodóvar film," the one with the big nose.

    • In the pilot episode, Jonathan trips on a baby's stroller as he is about to meet Ray at Smooch Cafe. In this episode, it's Ray who stumbles on a stroller as he enters the cafe to see Jonathan.

    • The Page Six article headline on George Christopher in the New York Post reads: "A Herpes-Ridden George Christopher horrifies Dem Party".

    • Nose Reference: Jim Jarmusch and Jonathan talk about New York poet Frank O'Hara and his beautiful nose.

    • Big Nose Reference: As Jonathan tries to retrieve the stolen skateboard from Francisco, the punk kid teases him on having a big nose.

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    Allusions (29)

    • As Jonathan talks about New York's DUMBO (Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass), he mentions wishing "there was a building elephant." Ames is referring to the fictional character from the classic Disney animated film Dumbo about an elephant who uses his huge ears to fly.

    • John Hodgman: (on Ted Danson) I think I maybe shouldn't have opened our relationship by trying to stump him on Cheers trivia. Cheers is the popular US sitcom which aired for 11 seasons on NBC. Ted Danson (George Christopher) portrayed bar owner Sam Malone on that show.

    • Hotel Velma: The fictional hotel is named after Velma Valento, the one-time girlfriend of Moose Malloy in Raymond Chandler's novel Farewell, My Lovely.

    • The words and phrases displayed in the book during the animated opening credits (i.e. dark, shadows, style, a show tonight, a button and resigned, alcoholic, deep-end, etc.) are actual words from show creator Jonathan Ames' original short story, "Bored to Death".

    • The scene wherein Jonathan runs his hand through Suzanne's empty closet is a recreation of an actual event in show creator Jonathan Ames' life as chronicled in his essay, "Our Selves Between Us": "When I came back to the apartment, the first thing I saw was her empty closet. It had been filled with her pretty clothes for two years. That empty closet was like a grave. A death. An end..."

    • Jonathan compared his girlfriend's moving out to the "Raid on Entebbe". In July 1976, the Israeli Defense Forces rescued most of the people taken hostage by Palestinian hijackers aboard Air France Flight 139. The rescue mission took place at Entebbe Airport in Uganda.

    • George: Almost everybody has bad wine breath tonight. It's like Chernobyl out there. In April 1986, an accidental explosion at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine caused radioactive fallout to drift over Western Soviet Union and parts of Europe and forced the evacuation of over 300,000 people.

    • The name Jonathan uses to sign at the motel is Philip Marlowe, who is the private eye protagonist in the detective novel series of Raymond Chandler.

    Show More Allusions
  • Fan Reviews (5)
  • funny and amazing show

    By mohammedalanze9, Oct 11, 2014


    By EBD111, Feb 28, 2013

  • I think this show king of the noir shows . The best noir television show ever made . I cannot wait every week for new episode . Jonathan , George , Ray all of the awesome ,awkward , funny characters . I love them . I hope so i can watch the 4th season .

    By netroute16, Nov 16, 2011

  • Only 6.5,OUTRAGEOUS!!!

    By retroman77, Nov 16, 2009

  • The most original, fun, and funny show on TV

    By weisserj, Dec 19, 2009

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