The first year or two, when Earl was crossing items off his list, were fabulous and clever. There were no long, complicated stories stretching over more than two episodes.
And that's the problem with the show now. The writers aren't up to longer story arcs. Seeing Earl in a coma, with his fantasy life is REALLY, really boring.
The two-parter at the beginning of the series: My family all hated it, and we didn't even finish it. Then came "Stole a Motorcycle". We tried really hard to watch it, but we just couldn't stomach it. Way to stupid, un-funny and dull.
Not to mention, very poorly directed.
Don't watch this (or last) Season if you love Earl. They will ruin it for you.