Watch Comedians Navigate the Treacherous 1970s L.A. Scene in the First Trailer for Showtime’s ‘I’m Dying Up Here’


It’s not as if TV needs more series that pay homage to that American hero, the standup comedian — there’s a long, long tradition of comics creating shows based on their lives as hard-scrabbling and fairly miserable performers. But if you think comedians have it rough now, a new Showtime series — which has just released its first trailer — would like to remind you just how brutal L.A.’s comedy scene was in the 1970s.

Based on former journalist and TV executive William Knoedelseder’s 2010 book, I’m Dying Up Here: Heartbreak and High Times in Standup Comedy’s Golden Age, the show stars Melissa Leo as a brassy ‘n’ sassy club owner named Goldie (yes, please!); Clark Duke and Michael Angarano as buddies from Boston trying to break out in L.A. (uh-huh!); and R.J. Cyler and Ari Graynor as young up-and-comers testing their voices (sure!).

I’m Dying Up Here was created by veteran TV writer David Flebotte (at various times he’s served as executive or co-executive producer on Masters of Sex, Will & Grace, Desperate Housewives, and The Bernie Mac Show) and boasts Jim Carrey as an executive producer. Jonathan Levine wrote and directed the pilot episode, which will air on Showtime on June 4.

Watch the first full trailer below: