If you ever yearned for Synecdoche, New York to be turned into a prestige TV reality show hosted by an ex-Comedy Central star, luckily, there’s Nathan Fielder’s The Rehearsal. The new HBO show has a simple premise; what if you could painstakingly rehearse life experiences, exploring every possible eventuality so as to minimize anxiety and discomfort when they arise? 

In the first episode, Fielder constructs an elaborate duplicate of a real-life Brooklyn bar on a soundstage purely to rehearse some guy’s awkward conversation at an upcoming trivia night. This seems like a wildly unnecessary expenditure until you remember that this is the same company that bankrolled eight seasons of Entourage.

The Rehearsal isn’t just affecting its subjects’ lives; it’s having an impact on the real world, albeit in incredibly minute ways. For one thing, the bar featured on the show, the Alligator Lounge, has already seen a major boom in business during trivia night. And the fake “Thrifty Boy” blog Fielder created as part of his ruse still exists online – although now it contains a message claiming it’s shutting down due to a lack of funding.

thriftyboy.org

Similarly, it’s kind of amazing that so many leftover artifacts from Fielder’s past Nathan For You gags are still circulating the world. Like Summit Ice, his line of outdoor apparel created to raise awareness about the Holocaust –

– still exists and has a seemingly functional online store. And the phony autobiography The Movement, cobbled together purely to trick people into working as professional movers for free as a form of fitness, is still a book you can buy at retailers like Barnes & Noble. 

Barnes & Noble

Not to mention that the Banzai Predicament, the fake band created as part of a scheme to inexpensively import smoke detectors by classifying them as musical instruments, has their beep-filled song streaming on services like Spotify. And you can even pick up a copy of the Diarrhea TImes for a mere $700 on eBay.

eBay

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Thumbnail: HBO

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