The basic premise certainly doesn’t break any new ground, but landing Carrey for this vehicle — with whom Showtime had already forged ties as the producer of its standup-comedy drama “I’m Dying Up Here” — still feels like a coup. (Carrey appeared on Fox’s “In Living Color,” but hasn’t been a series regular in more than 20 years.)
Even during the height of his movie career, Carrey was always a better actor than his comedic wild-man routine would suggest, as demonstrated by films like “The Truman Show” and “Eternal Sunshine.” To the extent that “Kidding” creates an opportunity to indulge both of those halves — to wear both the comedy and tragedy masks — it’s a nifty wedding of talent and material
As with any new series, there are a few caution flags in the early episodes, but enough of the key building blocks work that it’s clear “Kidding” isn’t just kidding around. In the process, Mr. Pickles and his puppet pals — or rather, Mr. Carrey and his collaborators — have moved Showtime into what feels like a very classy neighborhood.
“Kidding” premieres Sept. 9 at 10 p.m. on Showtime.