Vote of Confidence in Veep and Silicon Valley

HBO has renewed Veep and Silicon Valley only one week into their latest seasons.

The cable channel’s funniest comedies return 8.30 tonight on SoHo just a few days after their HBO premieres.

The bad news is Veep creator Armando Iannucci won’t be involved with season five.

“We have had conversations with Armando for some time about the challenges of maintaining his family life in London and producing a show in the states,” HBO said in a statement.

“Armando is not replaceable, but we are confident that Veep will continue to be produced at the highest levels with new showrunner David Mandel.”

Mandel’s credentials are as sharp as you’d expect for his new role: the ex-Seinfeld scribe executive produced another HBO signature hit, Curb Your Enthusiasm.

US critics were even more enthusiastic about Veep S4 than its predecessors, with The Hollywood Reporter’s rave being typical.

“Iannucci and his writers and cast are in peak form, crafting some of the best and most delightful scenes and character interactions you’ll likely see from a comedy ensemble.

“It begins to look seamless and easy — that’s the tell on greatness — as the walking-and-talking scenes roll onward through the White House that President Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) occupies for the next eight months, collecting and then tossing aside various characters as the searing banter whips viciously and hilariously back and forth.”

Trade paper rival Variety says Veep’s running mate, Silicon Valley, uses the death of Christopher Evan Welch, who played hi-tech mogul Peter Gregory, to reboot the S2 storyline about a bay area start-up seeking funding for the next great social media phenomenon.

Silicon Valley could have gone a variety of routes with its second season, but this one feels about as good as could be expected under the circumstances — finding the most organic and even honest way, ultimately, to hit the reset button.”

THR says the reset provides “an opportunity for the show to address one of its glaring omissions from the first season, which was the inclusion of more women in the show to illustrate their plight in the tech world.”

Despite this criticism, Entertainment Weekly argues “this boys’ club comedy accurately reflects the woeful lack of female representation in the real-life Silicon Valley” while The Washington Post points out “the show invests more energy and time in adding yet another brash boy-billionaire narcissist (Chris Diamantopoulos), whose money might be the filthiest of all.”

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