Seth Rogen's 'Friends From College' Cameo Is A Catalyst For Chaos
I don't know about you guys, but Friends From College on Netflix is making me increasingly relieved that I never even applied to Harvard. All schools have their quirks, and the Ivy is rarely mentioned by name, but none of its alumni on the show seem quite able to move on from those hallowed halls. Even Seth Rogen's cameo on Friends From College becomes a catalyst for this dysfunctional friend group. (Spoilers for Episode 6 of Friends From College ahead!)
Rogen plays Paul Dopkin, a financially successful divorcee who the friend group encounters at the wedding of a mutual Harvard pal. However, you don't hear that name too much, because at nostalgic events he is known strictly by his old college nickname — Party Dog. The grown man is still expected to perform tricks at weddings, barking and all.
He also, surprise surprise, used to go out with Sam (Annie Parisse). I'd be lying if I said there wasn't residual romantic drama in my own groups of friends from college, but this tangled web is intense, considering the audience knows that the married Sam has been having an affair with Ethan (Keegan-Michael Key) for years.
The guest appearance makes sense, since Rogen has worked with Friends From College executive producer and director Nicholas Stoller before — on the short-lived college comedy Undeclared and the two Neighbors films. The actor and writer's presence is not only an amusing cameo, it also sends Ethan closer to the edge. The center of the show's love triangle is feeling particularly ineffective and stressed out at this point in the story — unable to impress either Lisa, his wife (Cobie Smulders) or Sam, his lover/friend.
As much as he tries to be "Fun Ethan" at the wedding, Paul's antics kind of ruins Ethan's game, and then everything literally and figuratively falls apart. After jockeying back and forth for the class clown position, both party one-uppers are upstaged by Max's incredible toast.
His few scenes in Season 1 are more about Ethan and Sam's relationship than anything else, so I hope Rogen returns if Friends From College ends up getting renewed for Season 2. The further adventures of Party Dog would certainly be welcome — and his stunted personality may make the show's ensemble look sophisticated in comparison.