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What happens when two people hate each other at first sight? They get married, of course, in \"Ned & Stacey,\" the fast and funny, shotgun marriage-of-convenience sitcom from the producers of \"The King of Queens\" starring Academy Award nominee Thomas Haden Church (Best Supporting Actor, \"Sideways,\" 2004) and Emmy Award winner Debra Messing (\"Will and Grace\"). Ned Dorsey (Church) is a pompous advertising executive who needs a wife to get promoted. Stacey Colbert (Messing) is a ditzy freelance writer desperate to move away from her parents. So what happens one week after these strangers meet? They become in-name-only newlyweds with a great new job and a terrific view of Central Park. This three-disc DVD set includes all 24 hilarious episodes.
Before Debra Messing (Will & Grace) won an Emmy and Thomas Haden Church (Sideways) was nominated for an Oscar, they starred in Ned and Stacey. Although the screwball sitcom only lasted for two seasons, it confirmed that Church (Flying Blind, Wings) deserved the promotion to lead and that Messing (NYPD Blue) was a talent to watch. In the pilot, mutual friends introduce the couple. Those friends are Stacey's sister, Amanda (Nadia Dajani, Flirting With Disaster), and Ned's co-worker, Eric (Greg Germann, Ally McBeal), who just happen to be married. It's dislike at first sight. Ned is a self-satisfied ad exec and Stacey is a free-spirited freelance writer. He needs a wife to advance his career and she can't afford her own apartment, so they embark on a marriage of convenience. Except for the (heterosexual) marriage part, Ned and Stacey provides the blueprint for Will & Grace as the roommates will continue to see other people, and Amanda and Eric will appear as frequently as Karen and Jack. During the first year, the newlyweds will learn a lot about matrimony. In "Portrait of a Marriage," for instance, they'll find that their relationship, unconventional as it is, is actually pretty healthy compared to Ned's colleagues' highly dysfunctional unions. As Ned puts it, theirs is "a marriage minus the love, sex, and intimacy, which...is more real than the real kind." Notable writers include Oscar winners Alan Ball (American Beauty) and Charlie Kaufman (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), while guest stars include Olivia Newton-John ("Reality Check"), Jason Batemen ("Pals"), and Curb Your Enthusiasm's Susie Essman ("Thanksgiving Day Massacre") as Stacey's aunt. Executive producer Michael J. Weithorn would go on to create The King of Queens. --Kathleen C. Fennessy