First television came for the film actors, then it came for the directors, and now the Coen Brothers will follow the likes of Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, and David Fincher into developing for the small screen, working with Fox to create the hour-long comedy HarveKarbo with Cedar Rapids writer Phil Johnston. But while everyone will refer to this as “a Coen Brothers project,” because obviously, the caveat is that the Coens aren’t actually writing or directing anyway—at least not yet. Which is too bad, as that’s what they’re good at. Instead, they’re simply on board as executive producers through Imagine TV, the same production company behind Arrested Development (and the Coens’ Intolerable Cruelty, but let’s not think about that right now).
Nevertheless, the premise definitely fits with the Coens’ sensibilities: HarveKarbo concerns an “ill-tempered” private detective whose cases typically involve Hollywood bigwigs and his own deadbeat friends in El Segundo—a setup that brings to mind a West Coast, shaggier-dog Bored To Death, with moron movie stars replacing the McSweeney’s literati. And of course, there’s always the possibility that the Coens themselves might take a crack at writing or directing an episode, which would really be worth getting excited about. (Though given the last time someone tried translating the Coens to TV—that failed pilot for Fargo with Edie Falco—you can’t blame them for not exactly rushing to get more involved.)