At Last, A TV Show That Gives You Everything You Want...Characters Drinking From Obviously Full Cups of Coffee

You’re always worrying about it, you’re always complaining about it, and we’ve been listening, mostly, so here it is: The show you want, where everyone’s drinking from coffee cups that are obviously full, and visibly hot to the touch. Forty-three uninterrupted minutes of actors, and sometimes actresses, being handed a coffee cup, holding it in their hands, clearly reacting to holding something weighing anywhere between 12 and 24 ounces (which is more than a pound, by the way), maybe taking a sip and offering a slight wince, or even taking the lid off and getting a face full of steam or maybe some residual delivery sloshing that means they get a little coffee on their fingers — a guaranteed near-hour where you won’t feel the impulse to jab whoever’s sitting next to you and say, “Look at that. That coffee cup is obviously empty? See how she’s raising it to her lips like there’s nothing in it? Empty coffee cup.” You’re so tired of jabbing people — so tired of noticing the coffee cups — so tired of pointing out, as if for the first time, something you cannot seem to stop yourself from remarking upon, year after year.

It’ll be a relief not to have to say it. You hadn’t realized until now just how tired you were of saying it. What were you hoping for? What was the response you could possibly have received to “That’s not a full coffee cup” that would have allowed you to feel as if you had accomplished something, made a successful and necessary intervention in an artistic field? Simply hearing “Yes, that’s an empty coffee cup” never did the trick. Felt as empty as the cups themselves, if you’ll forgive me for being so on-the-nose. We don’t know what it was you were hoping for, but we do believe — most strenuously believe — that this show is going to be enough for you. Full coffee cups, squarely hefted in the non-gesturing hand, weighing the actors’ bodies down to earth and slightly reddening their fingertips. Most of the money we saved on scripts goes into wardrobe and insurance to cover burns, spills, etc. Pay someone to keep microwaving the coffee so it steams as realistically on the ninth take as it did on the first.

Oh, I don’t mean to martyr myself, or pretend that it’s a bigger burden than it is. It’s just cups of coffee, as you say — as you so regularly say. The actors know how to handle themselves, and they don’t spill that often. But they do spill it, of course. And it hurts. And it stains. That’s why we didn’t have the full cups of coffee to begin with. But this is what the people want, apparently.

So there’s coffee now. Big, brimming, full cups of it. Everyone’s holding one at least. And during flashback scenes or period dramas, when a woman pours tea delicately out of a tea service, you’d better believe there’s real tea in there, and she’s not just trying to hide the fact that nothing’s coming out into the little cups under a shroud of delicate movements.

So that’s — you wanted this, yes? You certainly have it now, so — So. Actors, actresses and so on, balancing full cups of coffee and saying things like, “Thanks for the coffee,” and “At last, coffee,” and blowing briskly across the surface before grimacing and taking that first sip. That’s what this now, and you can have it. I hope you — no, I’ve been going on too much about that. Here it is, no disclaimers.