Do you want to hear a secret? Well, here it is: we're still not over ABC canceling their a-MAH-zing sitcom Happy Endings. USA only made things worse by briefly flirting with the possibility of picking up the series, only to dash all of our hopes like the horrible, horrible monsters they are. What hurts the most is that last May, when ABC announced their ludicrous decision, they told us it was to make room for two new comedies, Super Fun Night and Mixology — neither of which will survive to see a second season. And nothing sucks worse than losing to a loser.
This week marks the one-year anniversary of the comedic gem's premature series finale, and we're currently wearing black and sitting shiva. If you haven't been exposed to the brilliance that is Happy Endings, please quietly excuse yourself from the room and go marathon all 57 episodes (you can watch them for free on YouTube), while we continue mourning the loss of krumping, whore's baths, and Mary Tyler Moore Tyler Moore Moore Moore.
The truth is, what we miss most about this show is watching its stellar cast goof off together every week. They've all managed to move on to other projects, but seeing them separately just won't be the same as watching them all act like crazy people in Brad and Jane's gorgeous apartment. But because a little Happy Endings is better than no Happy Endings at all, let's find out what the gang is up to these days.
Eliza Coupe (aka Jane Kerkovich-Williams)
Coupe excelled as competitive control freak Jane, who was one half of TV's funniest — and healthiest — couples. That's not hyperbole. Her relationship with husband Brad was not only hilarious, it was loving, supportive, and not hung up on things like traditional gender roles. (They were also refreshingly unconcerned with the fact that they were in an interracial relationship, which sadly still deserves recognition in this day and age.) Plus they had epic fake fights. Who can compete with that?
Coupe was recently cast in the lead role of a new pilot called Benched, where she stars as Nina, "a dedicated, career-driven corporate attorney who has a public nervous breakdown after getting passed over for an expected promotion." In a twist you couldn't invent, the series has been picked up by none other than USA. Yes — the folks at USA are making room for one of the stars of the show they so heartlessly neglected to save, but this sort of makes up for it.
Elisha Cuthbert (aka Alex Kerkovich)
Happy Endings long struggled over what to do with Cuthbert's Alex. The series began with her ditching her fiancé Dave at the altar, and early episodes were centered around their awkward interactions. But once that plot had run its course, what to do with Alex? She finally found her niche in the group by being the pretty — but surprisingly dumb — blonde. And we mean dumb . And also constantly hungry.
Next up, Cuthbert continues her funny streak by appearing in the film Just Before I Go , Courteney Cox's feature directorial debut, which just premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival last week. Cuthbert joins a stellar ensemble cast including Seann William Scott ("Role Models"), Kate Walsh ("Private Practice"), Garret Dillahunt ("Raising Hope"), Olivia Thirlby ("Juno"), and Missi Pyle ("Big Fish"). Also, as we all know, 24 is returning to FOX, and while everyone involved has insisted that Cuthbert won't be reprising her role as Kim Bauer in Live Another Day, don't put it past them to be hiding a secret eleventh-hour twist.
Zachary Knighton (aka Dave Rose)
Ever since Happy Endings began with Dave being left at the altar, he was always the nominal protagonist of the series... but really it's an ensemble show, and every ensemble needs its straight man. It should tell you something about the show that the "straight man" of the group was a v-neck addicted food truck owner obsessed with his 1/16 Navajo heritage.
Knighton has been a recurring guest star this season on NBC's Parenthood , where he plays Evan Knight, a schoolteacher who's simultaneously flirting with Julia and helping Adam and Kristina start a new charter school. He's also set to star in the new FOX comedy Weird Loners , where he'll play Stosh Lewandowski, a womanizing sales rep who moves in with his cousin after getting fired for sleeping with his boss's fiancée.
Adam Pally (aka Max Blum)
Pally's Max was a refreshing addition to the TV sitcom landscape: a gay man who wasn't defined by his homosexuality, and who loved sports, hung out with dudes, and was kinda chubby. He was just another guy... who happened to be gay. (Much to the disappointment of Penny: Max had to find her a gay husband to fill the need he didn't satisfy.)
Much like his former co-star Knighton, Pally has also sashayed over to FOX to join a sitcom: he signed on to Season 2 of The Mindy Project as a series regular. He plays Mindy's coworker and fellow gynecologist Peter Prentice.
Damon Wayans, Jr. (aka Brad Williams)
The other half of the Brad/Jane power couple was played by Wayans, Jr. as an unapologetically effeminate — yet still strangely masculine — lover of the finer things in life, including fine dining, murses and sexy times with his sexy wife.
Fans of FOX's New Girl recognize Wayans, Jr. as that guy from the pilot who disappeared after one episode. That's because he signed on to play Coach in that show when it didn't look like Happy Endings would receive a second season renewal. But then, hallelujah, it did — which meant he had to quit New Girl. But after Happy Endings was, in fact, canceled (*sob*) he went back to FOX to rejoin Zooey Deschanel & Co. Which means that between him, Pally, and Knighton, FOX is now the official home of Happy Endings' entire male lineup.
Casey Wilson (aka Penny Hartz)
Perennially single Penny was the sassy, free-spirited center of the group — and also singlehandedly responsible for coining the show's trademark a-MAH-zing exclamation. No matter how many disastrous dates she went on, no matter how many men broke up with her, nothing could dampen Penny's indefatigable optimism. She was their rock. She was their cheerleader. She was their stereotypically offensive gay guy.
Post-Happy Endings, Wilson has been focused on writing. She penned a pilot with friend and co-writer June Diane Raphael called DINKS (which stands for "double income, no kids"). The pilot was picked up for production by ABC, in what we have to assume was a mea culpa to the Happy Endings star. (DINKS is executive produced by Wilson, Raphael and Endings producer Jonathan Groff — no relation to the Glee and Looking actor.) No word on if Wilson will actually be starring in the pilot herself, or whether ABC is going to give it a full series order, but we can't wait to see what kind of zany comedy Wilson is cooking up for us. (She also has a small part in David Fincher's upcoming adaptation of the bestselling mystery novel Gone Girl .)
In other Happy Endings news, creator David Caspe is currently developing another comedy for ABC called Marry Me . Let's hope that A) it's as crazy good as his last effort, and B) the network doesn't axe it before its time. And while we wait to see what Caspe has in store for us next, we can dream about reuniting the Happy Endings cast for a feature film. Or at least a fun game of charades.
Images: ABC (2); Giphy (6)