Mark Duplass, Jay Duplass, and Steve Zissis are all responsible for creating and writing the comedy- drama Togetherness. Jay Duplass and Mark Duplass are the directors and the show is produced by Duplass Brothers Productions. The first season premiered on HBO on January 11th, 2015, and on January 27th the series was renewed for a second season. The first season featured 8 episodes.
The main cast of Togetherness is relatively small, with Mark Duplass starring as Brett Pierson, a sound composer, Melanie Lynskey as Bret's wife Michelle Pierson, Amanda Peet as Tina, Michelle's sister, and Steve Zissis as Alex Pappas, an aspiring actor in addition to being Brett's best friend. Other characters include Abby Ryder Fortson as Sophie, Brett and Melanie's daughter, Peter Gallagher as as Larry, Tina's boyfriend and a producer, John Ortiz as David, Mary Steenburgen as Linda, Joshua Leonard as Director, and Amy Adair as Peggy, the babysitter.
The story behind Togethernes is not so surprising given the name of the series. The show falls on a married couple named Brett and Michelle Pierson. The sparks and passion in their marriage have virtually died out, and in the midst of this Brett's best friend Alex and Michelle's sister Tina endeavor to move in with the married couple. Alex is an out-of-work, aspiring actor, and Tina is constantly is constantly struggling with her biological clock and relationships, and she has just gotten over a breakup. Brett is a sound designer and amidst his work he is also helping Michelle care for their two children. Brett and Michelle are not particularly happy in married life together and it becomes clear that they no longer have much of a sexual partnership together.
Both of them end up unsatisfied with their lives and wondering if there might be anything more out there. They are both pushing 40 and Brett is thinking about his spiritual journey and self-discovery, whereas Michelle has become interested in another man named David as she thinks about reigniting her passions. Michelle confides in Tina and Brett talks to Alex after the four have all moved in under one roof together. Together the four try their best to coexist in peace and harmony, maintaining good relationships as spouses, siblings, and friends, while also trying to achieve some of their own personal dreams and goals. Alex refuses to give up on his dream of becoming an actor and Tina endeavors in a business with bounce-castles. Meanwhile, Alex has a very obvious and transparent crush on Tina, but he seems only spurned on by her rejections.
The goal of Togethernes is not always to excite the most amount of humor or to be the most suspenseful drama, it is aimed to be something deeper and more realistic. The show is about the human condition and it is supposed to be relatable to its audience, and in a bigger sense more genuine. Even though Togetherness often succeeds at being humorous there is also an undercurrent of sadness and struggle that is easy to see in the characters. The series tries to find the medium between these two emotions without leaning too far in one direction or the other.
Rotten Tomatoes gives Togetherness an approval rating of 92% and IMDb gives it a 7.5/10 star rating. Many people who have watched the show thus far have found Togetherness to be quite entertaining and enjoyable. Those who liked the season found it touching and humorous and called it funny, original, unique, and amazing. While one person will state that the show redefines the genre, another will say that it is just another sitcom about marriage and relationships that isn't all that different from the rest. Many fans say that the show is a genuine and honest look not only at humans but growing older as well. They say that other TV shows do not have realistic or genuine characters anymore, but Togetherness does. Others have said that the characters are somewhat stereotypical.
Fans also say that it just puts them into a good mood with a better outlook on life. Those who did not like Togetherness called it mediocre and referred to it as an indie-film, and others thought the nudity it depicted was unnecessary. They call it annoying and uninteresting. Viewers call the show unpredictable, and some find that somewhat disorienting—but others found it refreshing and positive. Those who enjoyed Togetherness also admitted that sometimes it was a challenge to watch, but in a good way, saying that it is worth the difficulties that we must watch the characters endure. Overall it seems that whether or not you like Togetherness will hinge on your individual taste.