Friday, January 11, 2013

1600 Puke-sylvania Avenue ...

Ah, "Midseason" ... Television's dumping ground. Programming that couldn't make it onto the Fall Prime schedule, or simply placeholders for the actual GOOD stuff on hiatus between premiere eps. Still, I decided to give NBC's new Thursday night comedy a shot, and as you can guess by the title of this post ... It ... ain't ... good ...

1600 Penn is a sitcom starring Bill Pullman (or is it Bill Paxton?) as the President of the United States with his goofy, out of control family, creating hijinks in the Oval Office. The premise has potential and it reminds me of The Simpsons episode where Lisa was President and had to manage the antics of HER crazy family. I wouldn't be surprised if this is where 1600 Penn got its inspiration, however the result is MUCH much less enjoyable...

Every character is "one-note", teetering between "bland" and "unlikable", and the jokes are as empty and predictable as the plot points. Nobody exists believably in their world, so then is the humor coming from the situation? The crazy family member? The "straight-man"? (essentially, everybody ELSE on the show including other 'crazy family members' quickly normalized, as a joke necessitates, in order to carry)  Nobody knows!

The overgrown man-child - the John Belushi-esque, trouble-making, halfwit, loser son of the President, Skip Gilchrist, played by Josh Gad, is supposed to be the standout. But he's actually the worst. "A bumbling, fat oaf that doesn't know how to act, EVER". Very original NBC. Way to raise the bar there. His scenes are as excruciatingly tiresome as much as everyone else is completely forgettable.

The Peacock Net has BIG shoes to fill and needs DESPERATELY to reinvigorate it's Thursday nights, what with it's floundering commitment to Community, The Office seemingly on its last leg, and 30 Rock finishing up this year ... But 1600 Penn is NOT a step in the right direction. The show? In a word? - "Unwatchable"

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