ENTERTAINMENT

Now That 'The Comeback' Is Back, Laura Dern 'Can Never Say Never' To 'Enlightened' Returning

In this publicity photo released by HBO, actress, Laura Dern, is shown in a scene from HBO's 'Enlightened."  Dern failed to l
In this publicity photo released by HBO, actress, Laura Dern, is shown in a scene from HBO's 'Enlightened." Dern failed to land an Emmy nomination on Thursday, July 19, 2012, for her role on the HBO series. The 64th annual Primetime Emmy Awards will be presented Sept. 23 at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel and airing live on ABC. (AP Photo/HBO, Prashant Gupta)

"The Comeback" returned in all its uncomfortable, meta glory on Sunday, marking another departed show's resurrection. Nine years after the HBO comedy got the ax, Lisa Kudrow and Michael Patrick King's cult favorite joins a list of reanimated series that already includes "Arrested Development," "Veronica Mars," "Firefly" and "Community."

That raises questions about another beloved HBO show that went off the air before its time: "Enlightened," which ended in 2013 after two acclaimed seasons and one "very difficult decision." Last week, HuffPost Entertainment caught up with Laura Dern, who starred in and co-created the show with Mike White, and of course we had to ask whether seeing "The Comeback" return gives her impetus to resuscitate "Enlightened."

"Well, I’ve gotta say, now that 'The Comeback' has returned, we can never say never, even if it’s nine and a half years later," Dern said. "So that’s exciting. I know that the story closed now, but I guess you never know. Oh my God. I would play Amy any day of the week. I just love her so much, so it would be impossible to say no to getting to be in her skin more, as excruciating as it is."

Therein lies another way "Enlightened" is akin to "The Comeback." Dern's Amy Jellicoe and Kudrow's Valerie Cherish, for all their good intentions, both operate with a cluelessness that borders on narcissism. They've oblivious to social cues, and we're left cringing at their haplessness -- and rooting for them along the entire journey.

"I love it," Dern said when asked about the characters' wince-inducing awkwardness. "Lucy was my hero. I was raised on 'I Love Lucy,' so that’s my favorite kind of audience experience. So I love playing those kinds of characters and hope that, if not with 'Enlightened,' with other things, I get to explore that uncomfortableness in drama and comedy."

Fans have called for a Kickstarter campaign to keep the show alive. Last year, we urged Netflix to seize a perfect moment to revive it. But now that HBO is resurrecting shows, too (the short-lived "Hello Ladies" will return for a televised movie in November), we don't even need to outsource it. Dern can just phone up Lisa Kudrow, with whom she starred in the 2005 movie "Happy Endings," for some advice.

If not, we'll be over here channeling old-school Amy Jellicoe:
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Read the rest of our interview with Laura Dern when "Wild" opens next month.

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