On Thursday's episode of "Louie," Louis C.K. blurred the line between reality and entertainment when comedian Dane Cook showed up to play himself. But this was not just any cameo appearance: Cook and C.K. very aggressively explored the real-life friction between the comics, rooted in widely circulated accusations that Cook stole a few of C.K.'s jokes.
In the show, Louie wants to get tickets to a Lady Gaga concert, but Dane Cook is the only comedian who shares a promoter with Gaga that could help Louie score tickets. He's forced to have an interaction with Dane, and for the first time on television, they have a face-to-face confrontation where they explore the implications of these sort of public feuds, and the way they can tarnish both professional reputations and credibility, as well as personal integrity.
"The year 2006 was the greatest year in my life," says Dane to Louie on the show, before listing his record-smashing accomplishments of that year. "2006 should have been my triumph. And I enjoyed it for maybe two months. Two months before it started to suck. Because everything I started to read about myself was about how I stole from you."
Although Cook is playing himself, it's clear that this issue was close to his heart. He also addressed (and denied) the rumors last year on "WTF with Marc Maron."
C.K., who writes every episode of "Louie," very well may have squashed this beef with Cook prior to filming the episode. But the dialogue of this scene is very keenly and fairly constructed with regard to both parties. Louie doesn't let Dane off the hook, and Dane says his peace by denying joke thievery and admitting how hurt he was by Louie's silence on the matter. Like the episode of "Louie" this season where Louis C.K. discusses comedy with Joan Rivers, the story of how this episode came together could surely be worth the cost of the "Louie" season 2 DVD.