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John Mulaney knows that most critics disliked his Fox sitcom, but he actually enjoyed the vitriol.
The star of the short-lived Mulaney told Vulture that it was initially tough to hear that Fox was pulling the plug on his show. The multi-cam comedy had been picked up straight-to-series, but the network trimmed its episode order less than two weeks after airing its pilot.
“There’s momentary relief in not having to run a network show seven days a week,” the stand-up comedian said. “Momentary. But not really. It was very frustrating and disappointing not being able to go back to work with everyone.”
Mulaney said that his more seasoned co-stars, including Elliott Gould and Martin Short, both offered upbeat words of wisdom after it became clear that the show was receiving unfavorable reviews and wasn’t connecting with viewers.
Gould told Mulaney, “You are a happy person, and you cannot let them change that,” while Short’s advice was: “This is 98 percent of it. This is the job. You’ll do many, many things. A lot of them won’t work, and a couple will work.”
Still, Mulaney said he “would have made the show I made” if given another chance, as he needed to “get it out of my system.” He also admitted that the negative reviews ultimately provided a valuable learning experience.
“I did not expect [to fail], and I did not wish for it, but it was a great experience,” he said. “That sounds like I am being diplomatic or I’m lying, but I’m not. It was a great experience. I would not trade that life experience of having a week of everyone trashing you. It’s a little exhilarating!”
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