Barry (2023) Series: Dark Comedy Sees Light & Gets Wow Ending

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Barry is a bleak dark comedy series from America. Notably, it narrates the tale of depressed hitman Barry Berkman (Bill Hader), who wishes to give up his old career as a top-class assassin and start a fresh new life as an aspiring actor.

Along the way, in the acting class, he meets an acting teacher Gene Cousineau (Henry Winkler) and another acting student Sally Reed (Sarah Goldberg) – his love interest. Then he starts dreaming about leading a normal and mundane life like an average Joe – a married couple with a kid. But perhaps his handler Fuches (Stephen Root) and frenemy NoHo Hank (Anthony Carrigan) have different plans for Berkman.

Our FM team listed this show as one of the top comedy shows in recent times, in one of our articles.

Synopsis (summary) of this dark comedy series from the USA

Barry (S1/2018)

A cold-blooded hitman Berkman has a career epiphany when he’s thrust into the world of LA theatre in this dark comedy series starring Bill Hader. As his handler (Fuches) hires him out to the deeply violent Chechen mob in Los Angeles. However, his target is an aspiring actor whom he follows into an acting class–where he falls in love with the craft and one of its students (Sally Reed).

Barry (S2/2019)

Berkman just wants to focus on his acting and his girlfriend…but he can’t seem to escape his former life. So, Berkman (Bill Hader) and Gene (Henry Winkler) reprise their Emmy-winning roles in this series that finds the depressed war vet-turned-hitman Berkman (Hader, in the title role) incapable of extricating himself from a violent criminal triangle–and some deeply suspicious LA detectives.

Barry (S3/2022)

This third season ended on a satisfying note, as Berkman is finally being brought to justice. Or, perhaps, this is what we all thought so.

Please note, that it is not the end of Berkman, as he fights for another season.

Barry (S4/2023)

Berkman is in jail…and Gene Cousineau is a hero for putting him there. Nevertheless, the shocking consequences will be revealed in the explosive and hilarious final chapter of the dark comedy series.

Spoilers free review of the Barry (S4/2023-Finale) series

The anti-hero protagonist & other key characters

In this gloomy satire, Barkman (with a gun in the picture shared above), the anti-hero protagonist tries to mend his criminal ways and seek redemption. But is it the truth?

Therefore, throughout 4 seasons and 32 episodes, we realize the fakeness of all – the way certain criminal-minded humans act and behave.

Even the so-called good guy and a good gal (at least in public and in the initial seasons), like Gene Cousineau (with white hair in the picture) and Sally Reed (the only female in the picture), respectively disappoint. Both of them make questionable decisions by making bad choices instead of good ones in their lives.

Besides in this series, the stereotypical bad guys like Fuches (the old guy in the vest in the picture) and Noho Hank ( the bald guy in the picture) sometimes make good choices.

The actors & about the end of the show

This serial is a dramedy based on problems of a personal or social nature, almost all the important characters live in a grey area. Moreover, it is like a slice of reality. Besides, it is backed by dark humour sprinkled in this serial script of high quality. Above all, its amazing cast is led by senior actor Henry Winkler and the lead actor Bill Hader. In fact, all the main and supporting actors have done excellent acting jobs.

Notably, the fate of most characters, in the end, is perfect and gratifying. Equally important, we have to agree that the ending of this entertaining and thoughtful.

In case you have not seen this show yet, then in that case, it is the perfect time to catch up with this nonconforming, bizarre, eccentric and oddball action-comedy show. This dramatic serial has ended on a somewhat gratifying note. We also loved its potshots aimed at the gun culture in America and the white-washing to control the narrative.

The conclusion

So, no clear lines are differentiating the Good Person(s) versus the Bad Person(s) in this tragicomedy series. In general, lots of grey areas exist in these people’s lives. Perhaps, only the big Hollywood Studios with deep pockets can whitewash the stories of notorious people. Thereby, money, means and power can turn villains into heroes and vice-versa.

Such is the harsh reality of controlling the narrative by the powerful in a post-truth world. And that is a scary fact of the world.

All in all, we can state that it is a good comedy series to watch. This tragicomedy series finally sees light, as it gets a wow and satisfying ending for the viewers in the final season.

Spoilers Alert – the fate of Sally, Fuches, Gene & Barry Berkman in the end

Focus on Sally and Fuches – their conduct and fate in this show

Sally and Fuches repented of their past sins. Significantly, they owned the preceding mistakes in their respective lives. Perhaps, both of them were redeemed in the end. They stay alive. And in a way, in the given context, both get almost close to their (possible) wow endings.

Focus on Berkman, Hank and Gene – their conduct and fate in this show

On the other hand, Berkman and Hank did not mend their violent criminal ways. They used and misused people to get whatever they wanted in their respective lives. Also, both of them tried to justify their immoral and illegal actions. They neither learnt their life lessons nor ever repented for their bad and selfish behaviour So, in the end, both got punished by karma. So, they are killed at the end of this show.

On the other hand, Gene is a more complex character. To clarify, maybe, as an acting teacher/actor, Gene’s acute need for spotlight, publicity, fame and recognition is unfathomable. Driven by selfish ways and self-interests, Gene often transgresses, and not surprisingly, he ends up in jail. Under those circumstances, he too tries to take advantage of the given situations to get a name and fame for himself, by blaming others.

Key details of this dark comedy series from the USA

GenreAction, Comedy, Crime, Drama
Age-CertificationUA (15+)
CreatorsAlec Berg, Bill Hader
Seasons & EpisodesSeason 1 (2018) – Eight (8) episodes
Season 2 (2019) – Eight (8) episodes
Season 3 (2022) – Eight (8) episodes
Season 4 (2023) – Eight (8) episodes
4 Seasons = Total = 32 episodes
CastBill Hader, Stephen Root, Sarah Goldberg, Anthony Carrigan, Henry Winkler, etc.
TaglinesA hitman searching for some direction. (S1)
A killer second act. (S2)
You can’t bury your past. (S3)
The arresting final act. (S4)
AwardsPrimetime Emmy Awards – 2018 Winner Primetime Emmy – Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series – Henry Winkler
Primetime Emmy Awards – 2018 Winner Primetime Emmy – Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series – Bill Hader
Primetime Emmy Awards – 2019 Winner Primetime Emmy – Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series – Bill Hader
Directors Guild of America, USA – 2019 Winner DGA Award – Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series
Directors Guild of America, USA – 2020 Winner DGA Award – Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series
Directors Guild of America, USA – 2023 Winner DGA Award – Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy Series – Bill Hader {This series is Bill Hader’s directorial debut}
Writers Guild of America, USA – 2019 Winner WGA Award (TV) – Episodic Comedy
Writers Guild of America, USA – 2020 Winner WGA Award (TV) – Comedy Series
About – the Barry show.

Posters of this dark comedy series from the USA

Ratings of this dark comedy series from the USA

FM’s ratingIMDb rating as of the date
FM & IMDb ratings – Barry. show.

Trailers of this dark comedy series from the USA

Barry (S1/2018)
Barry (S1) – trailer | YouTube.
Barry (S2/2019)
Barry (S2) – trailer | YouTube.
Barry (S3/2022)
Barry (S3) – trailer | YouTube.
Barry (S4/2023)
Barry (S4) – trailer | YouTube.

Ratings of this dark comedy series from the USA

Rotten Tomatoes ratings as of the dateCritics’ Consensus / Rotten Tomatoes
S198% Tomatometer
90% Audience Score
PTSD and comedy make strangely endearing bedfellows in this series, which proves more poignant than its sketch show premise.
S2100% Tomatometer
93% Audience Score
This series follows up a pitch-perfect debut with a second season that balances darkness with comedy while steering clear of antihero overindulgence.
S399% Tomatometer
89% Audience Score
Bill Hader and company can take a well-deserved bow — this series makes its belated return to the screen without missing a step, retaining its edge as one of television’s funniest and most unsettling offerings.
S497% Tomatometer
84% Audience Score
What began as a macabre comedy is now close to completely shorn of genuine mirth, but Bill Hader’s masterful indictment of stardom closes the curtain with one hell of an encore.
Rotten Tomatoes ratings – the Barry show

Focus on the actor & the director – Bill Hader

Bill Hader is an American comedian and actor who is known for playing in Saturday Night Live from 2005 to 2019. Furthermore, he has been in six films that have grossed over 100 million dollars (Knocked Up (2007), Superbad (2007), Tropic Thunder (2008), and Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (2009). In addition, some of his other well-known movies are Men in Black 3 (2012), Clear History (2013), The Skeleton Twins (2014), It Chapter Two (2019), etc.

Besides Bill Hader has been performing as the voice artist in a bunch of popular movies, including the two hit movies – Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (2009) and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs (2009). His other animated movies are The Angry Birds Movie (2016), Finding Dory (2016), The Angry Birds Movie 2 (2019), Toy Story 4 (2019), etc.

Featured & Other Images: Barry Series | HBO & HBO Max.

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