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‘Kidding:’ Mr. Pickles, Puppets and Peak Michel Gondry

Things fall apart in Jim Carrey's new Showtime series

Showtime’s series Kidding follows Jeff—Mr. Pickles (Jim Carrey)—an icon of children’s television and a beacon of kindness and wisdom to America’s impressionable young minds and the parents who grew up with him. 

When this beloved personality’s family begins to implode, Jeff finds no fairytale, fable or puppet will guide him through this crisis, which advances faster than his means to cope. A kind man in a cruel world faces a slow leak of sanity.

Created and executive produced by Dave Holstein, and executive produced and directed by Michel Gondry, Kidding is airing now on Showtime. 

“The search for who we are and what’s an authentic person have always been attractive themes for me,” Carrey tells T.L. Stanley. “The idea of being hit by a freight train in life and trying to hold onto your identity calls to me.”

Gondry approached the series with “two images of Mr. Pickles,” he tells Matthew Jacobs. “One on the show: very positive and wise. And one out of the show: much more tortured, trying to remain the same way he is  initially, but falling apart. So that was my first image, to see this two aspects of Mr. Pickles.

“I think, especially in the beginning, there is nothing false about his message or his demeanor,” Gondry continues. “He’s really 100 percent what you see, and he tries to remain the same in the outside world. But that’s where it’s tough. 

“His cracks start to cross his character because he can’t see he’s a prisoner to the real world when his world starts to collapse. I mean, if his world was perfect or if everything was fine, he could be the same. But he’s not prepared for an accident or disaster or sudden bad luck, and that’s what interesting me: to see how somebody who is supposed to have a demeanor and a message that’s very positive confront the real world that’s being very negative to him.” To read the full interview, click here.

Watch the full first episode of Kidding: