The Louis C.K./Dane Cook Scene

While watching last night’s “Louie,” I tweeted that the opening scene — in which Louie’s comedic integrity leads to him quitting a sitcom — might have been my favorite in the show’s history. That sentiment lasted all of about 20 minutes, when Louie meets with Dane Cook because Cook is Louie’s only hope to get his daughter Lady Gaga tickets.

What ensues is nothing short of brilliant television. Cook, widely accused of stealing some of C.K.’s jokes, gets a chance to defend himself here, and C.K. presents the other side without being accusatory. And while it’s easy to dismiss this with “What’s the big deal? It’s two famous comedians arguing over jokes,” there’s a lot more to it than that. It’s about looking our enemies in the eye and seeing them as humans; it’s about letting go of anger; it’s about doing things you don’t want to do to make your kid happy; it’s about doing things you don’t want to do to make some kid you don’t even know happy. It’s well-written, it’s well-acted, and both comedians come out the other side as more sympathetic people — both as characters on the show and as real people in the viewer’s eyes. Just terrific. A+ for everyone involved. Even Dane Cook.

(thanks to Videogum for uploading this — Gabe’s got a nice little screed about this, too.)