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#1

Nosleepforme

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 4:31 AM

I'm kinda surprised that there are already threads for potentially bad shows like Whitney or I Hate My Teenage Daughter, but that there is not a single one for this potentially good comedy with Jeremy Sisto, Alan Tudyk, Cheryl Hines, Allie Grant and Jane Levy.

Single father George only wants the best for his 16-year-old daughter, Tessa. So when he finds a box of condoms on her nightstand, he moves both of them out of their apartment in New York City to a house in the suburbs. But all Tessa sees is the horror of over-manicured lawns and plastic Franken-moms. Being in the 'burbs can be hell, but it also may just bring Tessa and George closer than they've ever been.

Tessa (Jane Levy) and George (Jeremy Sisto) have been on their own since Tessa's mom pulled a "Kramer vs Kramer" before Tessa was even potty trained. So far George has done a pretty good job of raising Tessa without a maternal figure in their lives, but suddenly he's feeling a little out of his league. So it's goodbye New York City and hello suburbs. At first Tessa is horrified by the big-haired, fake-boobed mothers and their sugar-free, Red Bull-chugging kids. But little by little she and her Dad begin finding a way to survive on the clean streets of the 'burbs. Sure, the neighbors might smother you with love while their kids stare daggers at your back, but underneath all that plastic and caffeine, they're really not half bad. And they do make a tasty pot roast.

Trailer 1
Trailer 2
Trailer 3
Trailer 4
Futon Critic: First Look
Hitfix: First Look
TCA Report


I must admit this show has mostly caught my eye because of its cast. I loved Jeremy Sisto on Six Feet Under, Allie Grant on Weeds and Alan Tudyk on Firefly and Dollhouse. Similiarly, I also enjoyed Jane Levy in her recurring role on Shameless earlier this year and additionally Ana Gasteyer appears in a recurring role. So far, it has gotten positive feedback and the trailers don't make the show look bad. I'm looking forwards to its premiere. I'm not sure though if the show can tell us something about living in the Suburbs that American Beauty, Weeds or Desperate Housewives have not already covered.

Edited by Nosleepforme, Sep 11, 2011 @ 4:33 AM.

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#2

Bruinsfan

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 7:42 AM

I'm afraid Sisto can never again be anyone but Earl from Waitress to me. I see the promos and my gut reaction is to be horrified that his character is raising a child, and the premise doesn't do anything to keep me from hearing a creepy whining "promise not to love anyone more than me" in my head.
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#3

Lois Sandborne

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 8:18 AM

He's still Elton from Clueless in my head.

I saw a promo for the show, and it looks right up my alley. The "clean streets" pun in the blurb is clever. But yeah the premise with the suburbs as the idyllic alternative to the city won't carry them very far. Hopefully they branch off from the routine stereotypes/subversions quickly, because it is an awesome cast. Make them awesome characters and I'm in.
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#4

Redtracer

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 8:30 AM

I'm looking forward to this show. I completely agree that the show is going to need to come up with more substance than just, "ZOMG, the suburbs are shallow." It's been done. But I love the cast, and the previews have some really clever stuff in them. I'm very optimistic.

The only thing that struck me as odd was in one of the clips I saw, where the father gets really excited about seeing an "I Heart New York" shirt. I thought "real" New Yorkers treated those shirts with complete disdain.
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#5

Merve

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 9:41 AM

This show looks just about as shallow and one-note as the people it makes fun of. And the snarky teenage female character has been done to death. Seriously, fuck Juno and its brood.

But the buzz for this one seems to be positive, so maybe there's some magic creative spark that the trailers don't show. I guess I'll have to tune in to see.
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#6

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 11:43 AM

I'm really tired of any premise that washes out to be Manhattan=center of intelligence, decency, and all that is good in the world/Suburbs(or anywhere not Manhattan)=hell-spawned cradle of idiocy and vapid sensibilities. The suburbs (shock!) can actually be nice places to live. They have museums, libraries, parties, clubs, social activities, and a culture unto themselves. And it's nice to cook your own meals, and to know your neighbors, and horror of horrors, have a lawn or a rec room where kids can play without leaving the house. Not everyone's cup of tea, and they have problems of their own, but I hate that everywhere on tv would have the audience believe that suburbanites are chronically miserable, and Manhattan is the place to be and the place to want to be.
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#7

mrhooks

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 12:07 PM

I'm really tired of any premise that washes out to be Manhattan=center of intelligence, decency, and all that is good in the world/Suburbs(or anywhere not Manhattan)=hell-spawned cradle of idiocy and vapid sensibilities.

I saw the pilot yesterday at the ABC Fall Preview Party. Part of the show is exploring just that: Tessa (Jane Levy's character) realizing that maybe the women of suburbia aren't all dumb, vapid, and shallow, and that maybe being there isn't all bad, no matter how much she may resist.

However, while that aspect of the writing is pretty good, and Jane Levy and Jeremy Sisto are very good, overall I thought the pilot depended too much on the "city good, suburbs bad" thing, and the women (moms and daughters) were all made to look and act as stereotypically horrifying as possible. There wasn't really any shred of intelligent writing until the very end. And I have an irrational dislike for Cheryl Hines. There were a few funny moments, but I'm gonna skip this one.
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#8

kiseki

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Posted Sep 11, 2011 @ 12:22 PM

I agree that the "haha the suburbs are shallow and dumb" isn't exactly an original idea but the writing seems sharp and I trust any Parks&Rec writer. Like Up All Night, I'm not expecting much from the pilot but hoping that it'll improve as it goes along.

Also I'll watching this for Jane Levy. I liked her on Shameless and she's reminding me of a tarter-mouthed Emma Stone, who I have a major girlcrush on.
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#9

Runningwild

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Posted Sep 13, 2011 @ 12:30 PM

He's still Elton to me, too. I certainly don't believe Manhattan=everything smart, wonderful, and cool in the world, but the promos have been pretty funny, so I will give it a try.

Edited by Runningwild, Sep 13, 2011 @ 12:31 PM.

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#10

Inquisitionist

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Posted Sep 13, 2011 @ 5:11 PM

I have an irrational dislike for Cheryl Hines.

I find this completely rational.

I'm not expecting much from the pilot but hoping that it'll improve as it goes along.

It's a rare sitcom that gets all things right in the pilot. Parks & Rec has taught me to be a bit patient.
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#11

Nerg

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Posted Sep 13, 2011 @ 6:06 PM

I'll definitely give this a shot. But from the previews, my only real thought is that Jane Levy's looks = 2/3 Emma Stone + 1/3 Missy Peregrym.
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#12

hardy har

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Posted Sep 26, 2011 @ 6:42 PM

I, too, am checking this out for Jane Levy because I thought she was so great in he small recurring gig on Shameless. I agree that the whole City vs. Suburbs setup is tried as hell, but that's never really bothered me because I knew moms like that from the suburbs I grew up in. Obviously, they exaggerated for effect, but they're still totally recognizable. At least to me.

Or maybe I just grew up in some weird suburbs.

Oh, and Jeremy Sisto is playing the father of a teen. I officially feel old.

Edited by hardy har, Sep 26, 2011 @ 6:43 PM.

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#13

kiseki

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Posted Sep 27, 2011 @ 3:26 AM

Yahoo has the entire pilot up already.

I really liked it. I thought the writing was sharp and it made me laugh quite a bit. The greatly exaggerated surburbia setting was used for great effect, loved the zombie-ish aspects. Also Jane Levy is really good in it. But for some reason, overwhelming public reaction seems to be negative so far.

Edited by kiseki, Sep 27, 2011 @ 3:26 AM.

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#14

Skittl1321

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Posted Sep 27, 2011 @ 1:14 PM

And I have an irrational dislike for Cheryl Hines.


Is she in this? Ugh. I can't stand her (acting? characters? It isn't her personally, I don't think) either.
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#15

samsnee

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:00 PM

So this is basically Mean Girls: The Series?
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#16

CrumbyButtons

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:03 PM

I actually liked it a lot. I like the characters. Yeah, it's probably a little too city/good suburbs/bad at this point, but they're setting up the premise - I think there's many ways they can go with this. I think I'll be watching!

I liked the Kramer vs. Kramer bit "don't you put that straw in that can..."
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#17

mochamajesty

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:07 PM

Although I consider Jeremy Sisto in the Top Five of my TV boyfriends, I hated this. I didn't laugh once. The daughter looks nothing like him - at all.

Who was the guy at the dinner table? New Gay Neighbor cliche?

And, I will tune in again to gaze upon the wonderous beauty that is Jeremy Sisto. *sigh* The power of the pretty.
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#18

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:14 PM

I love Jeremy Sisto, and I saw someone describe this show as a "live action Daria," which gave me hope, because I'm all for getting more jaded smart girls on tv, but this show just wasn't funny or especially credible. She lives in New York, bike messenger capital of the world, home of many hipster/bike lane controversies, and a bike is a foreign object to her? Her seemingly intelligent father really thinks there's less sex among high school students in the suburbs? They had enough money to pick up and move afford a house in a posh neighborhood in the suburbs, but she never before encountered a shallow person or tacky would be fashionista? Plus I kept expecting Detective Lupo to stumble upon a crime and solve it, and it made me sad that they killed off real Law and Order for that stupid LA knockoff. I won't watch this again unless there's absolutely nothing else on, and then I'm watching it on mute just to gaze into Jeremy Sisto's pretty pretty eyes.
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#19

Swedge

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:16 PM

The lead girl is a real discovery* and she and Sisto were pretty believable, more so than usual in a sitcom. Cheryl Hines was scary and the overall suburban horror show was hilarious. I enjoyed this more than any other new comedy this season so far.

*I'm aware she was on Shameless before.

Edited by Swedge, Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:18 PM.

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#20

Lois Sandborne

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:17 PM

I don't know, I kind of hated it too? In large part because I don't like the main girl (Tess? or Jess?). I know she's supposed to be the snarky urbanite, but she comes across as far too condescending, and not clever enough to make me forgive her for it. I viewed her as unsympathetic, which is not how I'd normally view a high-schooler whose father picked her up and dropped her off in a new town for no real reason.

The passive aggressive book selections and the tour with Dalia were funny though. And the new best friend might be promising.
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#21

CrumbyButtons

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:23 PM

Where do I know the overly blonde, overly tanned guy with the overly white teeth from? The one at the pool and later the dinner table?
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#22

kiseki

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:28 PM

Quick IMDB search of Alan Tudyk says 'Serenity', 'Dollhouse', 'V', and '3:10 to Yuma'.

Interesting to see that they changed the country club scene from the pilot but this was a lot funnier. I loved it when the lady kept on texting once she fell into the pool.

And judging from critics and twitter/tumblr reactions, this really does seem to be a love-it-or-hate-it type of thing.
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#23

Jilly Copper

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:28 PM

Was he Walsh from Firefly?
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#24

Betsyb

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:35 PM

Did this remind anyone else of the 10 Things I Hate About You sitcom? Although no one would believe it because of the name and because it was on ABC Family I actually think 10 Things was similar but better.

The cast here is awesome, though. So, I will try to tune in again.

Was he Walsh from Firefly?


Yes he was! I almost didn't recognize him orange.

Edited by Betsyb, Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:36 PM.

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#25

calidub

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:40 PM

For some reason, Alan Tudyk will always be Steve the Pirate from Dodgeball to me. Kinda like how Jeremy Sisto will always be Elton from Clueless.

I really really like this cast.
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#26

TiffanyNichelle

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 8:47 PM

I thought it was pretty funny and cute. I think I'll tune in again.
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#27

tomorrowgirl

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 9:00 PM

I really like Jeremy Sisto, but I do not like Cheryl Hines, so it's going to be kind of hard to keep watching this show, especially since it wasn't as funny as I hoped it would be.
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#28

Merve

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 9:44 PM

I'm trying to decide whether this was just the worst pilot I've ever seen or one of the worst things I've ever seen. Okay, I'm exaggerating slightly. But this was awful. Jeremy Sisto was terrible. He just smiled the entire time. Learn to emote, damn it! And Jane Levy wasn't great either; she could really take some lessons from someone like Ashley Rickards, who has the snarky, deadpan teenage girl thing down. Levy's character just came across as an unsympathetic, condescending ass.

As for the idea that the suburbs are fake and that the city is somehow a bastion of all that is pure and real, have the creators of this show ever been to Manhattan? Just go downtown and you can see hordes of plastic men and women.

I can't bring myself to watch any more of a show with such a dumb premise and such subpar acting. And on top of that, the smug, "we're so clever" vibe made me want to stab things. I wouldn't have made it past the first five minutes, but critics seemed to like this one, so I gave it a chance. And the only good thing I got out of it was the part about the dead goldfish and the black-and-white movie. Everything else about this show was just bad.

For some reason, Alan Tudyk will always be Steve the Pirate from Dodgeball to me.

OMG yes! And he was also Ann Veal's dad on Arrested Development, right? I was trying to remember why I liked Alan Tudyk so much.
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#29

DrScottie

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 10:33 PM

I'll definitely give this a shot. But from the previews, my only real thought is that Jane Levy's looks = 2/3 Emma Stone + 1/3 Missy Peregrym.


I definitely see that too, especially Emma Stone, both the looks and the snark from Easy A. Plus, she sounds little a bit like Gillian Jacobs (Britta Perry on Community). It was interesting, but I'll see where it goes from here.
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#30

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Posted Sep 28, 2011 @ 10:36 PM

So this is basically Mean Girls: The Series?


Yeah. But, Mean Girls is considered to be a good movie. I really liked this. I kind of feel like it won't make it though.
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