The Ranch is an upcoming comedy television series scheduled to premiere on Netflix in 2016. The show will star Ashton Kutcher and Danny Masterson in the lead roles. It comes from the executive producers of the hugely popular sitcom, Two and a Half Men. The twenty episodes of the series will be released in two sets of ten episodes each and should be on everybody’s watch list, at least for sampling.
The story of the show is set in Colorado and is about two brothers. It starts with Ashton Kutcher’s character coming back home to run the family business with his brother, played by Danny Masterson. Their father, a rancher himself, however, does not have a good relationship with his footballer son. He is angry at his son, for going away and leaving behind the family business.
The Ranch got a direct order for the series without a pilot and it is understandable given the lineage it is coming from. The show brings together many old crew members from different shows together. First, the show is created by the executive producers of Two and a Half Men, Jim Patterson, and Don Reo. Ashton Kutcher was the lead in the show for the last four seasons of the series. The Ranch also took shape right around the twelfth season of Two and a Half Men. Reo and Patterson have written the screenplay and will also be the executive producers for the show. Initially, there was also a rumor that Chuck Lorre would be associated with the show, but that did not happen. The Ranch is also the second multi-camera on Netflix after Fuller House. It is anticipated that the series will appeal to the wide audience base of Two and a Half Men, as well as the cult show, The Big Bang Theory, because of the presence of Reo and Patterson.
Then there is the pair of old friends from That 70s Show, Ashton Kutcher and Danny Masterson, who are not only acting in the show, but producing it too. Laura Prepon too, another veteran of That 70s Show, is currently working on another Netflix project, Orange Is The New Black. This is kind of a mini-reunion for the That 70s Show team here. It will be interesting to watch how it pans out for Kutcher and Masterson. Both of them are seasoned performers, who are no strangers to the comedy.
Ashton Kutcher has garnered mass popularity over the years with roles in sitcoms like That 70s Show and Two and a Half Men, in which he replaced Charlie Sheen in the last four seasons. The actor is also known to be a successful producer and investor. He has been a part of many movies, including the hits such as Dude, Where’s My Car? (2000) and critically acclaimed projects like The Butterfly Effect (2004). His recent movies include No Strings Attached (2011) and Jobs (2013), among others. Ashton Kutcher is also responsible for the concept and production of the MTV hit show, Punk’d, which he also hosted. It is now in its ninth season.
Danny Patterson, who plays Ashton’s brother in The Ranch, also played Steven Hyde in That 70s Show. Over the years, he has been actively involved in both TV shows and movies. What many people do not know is that he is also a professional DJ. His most recent project was the TBS show, Men At Work, which he also produced for ten seasons.
Sam Elliot plays the role of the father to these two brothers. The actor is well known for his voice and typical cowboy appearance. No wonder, he will fit in The Ranch perfectly. The actor has a large body of work behind him, both in television and movie industry. Most people recognize him from the character of General Ross in Hulk (2003) and the old caretaker in The Ghost Rider (2007). He is also well known for his roles in shows like FX’s Justified and NBC’s Parks and Recreation. He has been a part of numerous documentaries and has also lent his voice to various commercials and other projects.
Debra Winger has also been signed up for the show, a first regular full time television series for her. The talented actress is a three time Academy Award nominee and brings a lot of weight to the show. Her Oscar nominations came from the movies An Officer and a Gentleman (1982), Terms of Endearment (1983), and Shadowlands (1993). She has numerous awards to her credit, including the Best Actress Award for Terms of Endearment by the National Society of Film Critics, another Best Actress title at the Tokyo International Film Festival, and so on. The actress had cut down significantly on her work to focus on her family life and kids. Now that her kids are in their youth, the actress is accepting more work.
There is also a difference in how Netflix is releasing this show. Instead of the 13-episode release of shows that it does for most of its shows, the streaming service has ordered 20 episodes for the first season of The Ranch. The first lot of ten episodes will be released initially, followed by the second set. The style is more like broadcast television, where a typical season consists of 22 episodes on an average. Netflix has been experimenting with its release methods with other shows as well. For instance, All Hail King Julien, the animated series, is doled out in a batch of five episodes each. However, for Between, the new drama series, Netflix only released one episode per week, just like the regular cable networks. These experiments may give Netflix the perfect blend that results in maximum viewership and appreciation of the content it is producing.
Netflix original series have a track record of receiving a warm reception from audiences. The presence of a big star like Ashton Kutcher, is surely going to add to the appeal of The Ranch. It is also interesting to watch how sitcom stars are making a headway towards the Netflix shows. This is an interesting phenomenon and the online streaming service will definitely be able to tap into the sitcom fan base with more shows like this. As far as The Ranch is concerned, although it debuts in 2016, the cast and crew of the show are highly likely to create a lot of buzz before the launch date itself.