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Maron, Season 2: TV review

The second season of the podcaster's sitcom doesn't inspire as much laughter
Marc Maron in Maron
Marc Maron and Chris Hardwick in Maron
Sarah Silverman in Maron
David Cross, Sally Kellerman and Judd Hirsch in Maron
Marc Maron in Maron
 (Photograph: Chris Ragazzo)
Photograph: Chris RagazzoMichael Ian Black and Marc Maron in Maron
Sally Kellerman and Richard Riehle in Maron
Dave Anthony and Marc Maron in Maron
David Cross in Maron
Marc Maron and Jamie McShane in Maron
By Jessica Johnson |

Premieres Thursday, May 8 at 9pm on IFC.

While most people know Marc Maron from his WTF podcast, where he interviews musicians, filmmakers and, most often, comics, he's quite the skilled comedian himself. At first glance, Maron's IFC show appeared to be little more than an attempt to capitalize on the popularity FX's Louie, but its first season was an amusing re-creation of anecdotes pulled from his stand-up. Sadly, in its second season, Maron repeats a lot of the same emotional beats from its first year, without delivering nearly as many laughs.

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Like the real-life Marc Maron, his TV analogue is frequently stressed by personal relationship and his growing career. As the new season begins, Marc is still dating his younger girlfriend Jen (Nora Zehetner) and faces the daunting prospect of meeting her father for the first time. As the popularity of his podcast grows, he gets the opportunity to guest on Talking Dead, though his rocky history with host Chris Hardwick and the fact that he doesn't watch The Walking Dead could turn it into a disaster. His mother (Sally Kellerman) and father (Judd Hirsch) return to open up old wounds from his childhood. It's a lot of familiar territory that was visited in the show's first year.

Outside of his podcast interview subjects, Maron hasn't generally delved too deeply into Marc's affiliation with the showbiz world, but his Talking Dead appearance offers the freshest humor in the sophomore season, especially when he's trading barbs with fellow guest Michael Ian Black. When it comes to storylines about his family and troubled romances, though, Maron just seems to be retreading old ground.

While the show can still entertain and Maron's brand of curmudgeon is oddly endearing, everything feels a bit more worn and tired this time around.

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