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post #1 of 73 Old 11-18-2019, 02:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Avenue 5 on HBO (Space Comedy)

Hugh Laurie To Star In Armando Iannucci’s HBO Comedy Pilot ‘Avenue 5’

After lengthy negotiations, Hugh Laurie has formally closed a deal to star in HBO’s comedy pilot Avenue 5 (tentative title), from Veep creator Armando Iannucci.

Created, written and executive produced by Iannucci, Avenue 5 is set in the future, mostly in space. Laurie will play the lead Ryan Clark, the charming and in-control American captain of Avenue 5.
HBO greenlighted the pilot last year, along with ordering backup scripts.

Like with Iannucci’s Veep and star Julia Louis-Dreyfus, the top role in Avenue 5 had been earmarked for Laurie; the two worked together on Veep, which Laurie joined for a major recurring role in Season 4, Iannucci’s last before leaving the show. (Laurie’s arc continued through Season 5.) Additionally, Laurie stars in Iannucci’s upcoming movie The Personal History of David Copperfield.

Laurie is known for his roles as Dr. Gregory House on Fox’s hit drama series House, which garnered him two Golden Globe awards, six Emmy nominations and two SAG awards, and as Richard Rope in AMC’s The Night Manager, which earned him his seventh Emmy nomination. He recently starred in the title role of Hulu’s Chance, which ran for two seasons, and just wrapped shooting Hulu’s limited series Catch-22, based on Joseph Heller’s seminal war novel, set for release in 2019.

https://deadline.com/2018/08/hugh-la...or-1202450599/
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post #2 of 73 Old 11-18-2019, 02:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Teaser trailer:

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post #3 of 73 Old 11-18-2019, 02:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Looks pretty good. Will definitely be checking this one out.

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post #4 of 73 Old 11-18-2019, 02:22 PM - Thread Starter
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‘Avenue 5’ Teaser: Armando Iannucci’s HBO Space Comedy Series Is Ready For Takeoff

“Ok boys and girls, let’s keep our eyes on the prize. Fly safe, fly true,” says Hugh Laurie’s Captain Ryan Clark in the opening minutes of a first-look teaser for HBO’s Avenue 5, Armando Iannucci’s space tourism comedy series.

Created, written and executive produced by Iannucci, who directed the pilot, Avenue 5 is set 40 years in the future when the solar system is everyone’s oyster. With Laurie as the Captain, nothing can go wrong. Josh Gad, Zach Woods, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Rebecca Front, Lenora Crichlow, Suzy Nakamura and Ethan Phillips co-star.

Laurie is Ryan Clark, Captain of space cruise ship Avenue 5. Gad plays Herman Judd, the billionaire face and name behind Avenue 5 and the whole Judd brand, including hotels, fitness clubs and space tourism. Woods is Matt Spencer, Head of Customer Relations. Amuka-Bird portrays Rav Mulcair, Head of Judd Mission Control on Earth. Front is Karen Kelly, a born leader who illicitly boarded Avenue 5 using her sister’s non-transferable ticket. Crichlow plays Billie McEvoy, the second engineer. Nakamura is Iris Kimura, Judd’s right-hand-woman. Phillips portrays Spike Martin, an elderly space enthusiast and former astronaut who is a grizzled womanizer and heavy drinker.

https://deadline.com/video/avenue-5-...s-hugh-laurie/

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post #5 of 73 Old 01-09-2020, 11:28 AM - Thread Starter
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HBO's amusing Avenue 5 sends Hugh Laurie into orbit: Review

Hugh Laurie stars in HBO's silly-smart space comedy from Veep creator Armando Iannucci.

After spending years performing comedic vivisection on the American political system with Veep, creator Armando Iannucci is back on HBO with Avenue 5. The well-cast space farce — starring Hugh Laurie as the captain of an interplanetary cruise ship — is not in the same satirical league as its earthbound predecessor, but it delivers above-average laughs by taking the “hell is other people” conceit and boomeranging it across the universe.

Set 40 years in the future, Avenue 5 follows Ryan Clark (Laurie), the charming and avuncular captain of the titular space vessel, which is several weeks into its two-month cruise around Saturn. Much like an ocean liner, the Avenue 5 offers customers a surfeit of food options and endless organized fun, and Ryan’s job mostly involves strolling through the corridors and making small talk with the passengers. After a sudden, gravity-related mishap knocks the ship years off course, Ryan and his colleagues — including head of customer relations Matt Spencer (Zach Woods), the cruise line’s billionaire owner Herman Judd (Josh Gad), and engineer Billie McEvoy (Lenora Crichlow) — are tasked with keeping hundreds of space tourists calm while coming to terms with their own hermetically-sealed nightmare.

Suffering through this getaway-turned-hostage situation are miserable marrieds Doug and Mia (the always-entertaining Kyle Bornheimer and Jessica St. Clair), as well as the demanding Karen Kelly (Rebecca Front), who relentlessly hectors the Avenue 5 crew on behalf of her fellow passengers. (The Office’s Andy Buckley is delightful as Karen’s diffident husband Frank, a guy whose idea of living on the edge involves taking out a bridge loan.)

Based on the four episodes made available for review, Avenue 5 isn’t so much a space comedy as it is a droll exploration of a character-revealing crisis. Though the intergalactic setting allows for zero-gravity gags and a running joke about the two-minute lag time that plagues every satellite call to Earth, Iannucci seems more interested in putting those aboard Avenue 5 through their existential paces. Woods, a master of both affable and devastating deadpan, is once again brilliant as the ship’s chipper customer service liaison. A self-described nihilist, Matt is actually giddy over the emergency — it’s both a sinister cosmic joke and an excuse to stop pretending that he cares about all those petty passenger grievances. (“I am trained to make sure your body wash gets replenished, not to rectify the catastrophe of human existence,” he tells them.)

It isn’t long before Ryan’s bonafides as a capable leader are called into question, and it’s fun to see Laurie play a man whose bravado actually masks an inner swarm of insecurities. As the petulant, self-indulgent billionaire Herman Judd, Gad works harder than his bleach-blonde comedy wig for every laugh, though he does calm down a bit as the episodes progress. Suzy Nakamura balances out Gad’s surplus energy as Iris, the Judd corporation’s brusque and efficient fixer.


Coming right on the heels of Veep, one of the best shows of the past decade, Avenue 5 is almost inevitably a bit of a disappointment. The show feels like a funnier spiritual sibling of Other Space, Paul Feig’s cult sci-fi comedy; it even stars Space’s Neil Casey as Spencer, a cocky, cargo shorts-wearing engineer who helps Billie keep the ship running. But putting aside any expectations for another serving of Iannucci’s savage satire, Avenue 5 is still a sharply-written comedy with a strong cast and an enjoyable mix of highbrow punchlines, broad physical comedy, and silly sight gags, one involving a radiation shield of human excrement. And if there’s anyone who can navigate viewers through a s—storm, it’s Hugh Laurie. Grade: B

https://ew.com/tv-reviews/2020/01/09...laurie-review/

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post #6 of 73 Old 01-09-2020, 11:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Welcome to Avenue 5: Explore the Ship




Avenue 5: Invitation to Set - Cast Shares What To Expect from Season 1



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post #7 of 73 Old 01-09-2020, 11:42 AM - Thread Starter
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One more.


Welcome to Avenue 5: A Luxury Space Experience



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post #8 of 73 Old 01-09-2020, 03:27 PM
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Since I will no longer be able to watch The Orville, this will have to suffice.
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post #9 of 73 Old 01-14-2020, 08:44 AM - Thread Starter
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From HOTP thread:


HBO’s ‘Avenue 5’ Starring Hugh Laurie
By Caroline Framke, Variety.com - Jan. 13, 2020

“Avenue 5” is technically science-fiction, but as many genres shows have proved, drawing a straight line from our reality to a hyperbolic future like the one of HBO’s new comedy is all too easy. Set 40 years in the future, it takes place on Avenue 5, a spaceship that is essentially a high stakes luxury cruise. It’s set to orbit around Saturn while offering typical amenities like spas, high-end restaurants and group yoga, all backgrounded by the starry cosmos. This being a comedy, though, things go quickly, ridiculously, horribly awry, shifting the cruise’s promised length of 8 weeks to an ominous “IDK, TBD!”

The series comes from the creative team behind the U.K. political comedy “The Thick of It” — including “Veep” creator Armando Iaunucci, Simon Blackwell, and Tony Roche — and accordingly finds material and objects of righteous ridicule in banal interactions and bureaucratic nonsense, even in space. The ship’s captain (Hugh Laurie) is bewildered and untested; its customer service representative (Zach Woods, perfectly cast) is enthusiastic but useless; billionaire manchild Judd (Josh Gad), who’s bankrolling the entire endeavor, requires constant babysitting lest one of his harebrained ideas quite literally sink the ship. They’re notably countered by a couple women who are blessed with the gift of basic competence: Judd’s fearsome righthand woman Iris (Suzy Nakamura) and exasperated mechanic Billie (Lenora Crichlow). Occasionally, we even get to see the technicians back on Earth trying to suss out the damage from afar, including a welcome turn from Nikki Amuka-Bird as the slowly panicking Rav.

It’s a sprawling ensemble even without the actual customers the largely hapless “Avenue 5” team are supposed to be serving, including a furious married couple hurtling towards divorce (Kyle Bornheimer and Jessica St. Clair) and the personification of “I would like to speak to your manager” named, of course, Karen (Rebecca Front). Some of them, most notably Gad’s petulant Judd, are best in small doses. Others, like Laurie’s shapeshifting captain and his unexpected foil of Billie, get better and better the more we get to know them. (There’s also something brilliantly, purposefully pointed about the fact that the men in charge keep fumbling it, and the women getting things done are women of color while the white women make complaining their full-time jobs.)

The “Thick of It” team specializes in the kind of bratty banter that emerges between feckless people in power and/or the oblivious people they’re in charge of, so it’s no surprise that “Avenue 5” is at its best when its circumstances are at their worst. This works, for the most part. It doesn’t particularly matter that this show’s version of those characters are in space. The dynamics between them are deliberately the same as they might be if they were interacting at a “Veep” campaign rally, grounded in the recognizably petty reality of human beings just trying to grit their teeth through another dumb day of being alive. There aren’t as many memorable lines (or gleefully profane insults) as this creative team has been known for in the past, a disappointing development that will hopefully change as the show settles more into itself.

Soon enough, everyone on the ship is suffering from intense cabin fever — and as a show, “Avenue 5” could soon follow suit. After watching the four episodes provided to critics, it’s hard to know where the show might be going, and how much longer the ship could be stuck in space. (2 years? 6 months? Forever? All seem equally likely!) By the end of the fourth episode, I was itching to get outside the ship’s walls almost as much as its restless inhabitants. If “Avenue 5” wants to get more mileage out of its premise, it’ll have to find some newer gears within it for its excellent cast and intriguing characters to play with beyond pure frustration.

“Avenue 5” premieres Sunday, January 19 at 10 pm on HBO.

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I'm there. It looks to fill the sci-fi humor void since 'The Orville' has moved behind a pay-wall.

Yeah, I know HBO has a pay-wall too, but I've been a subscriber for 30+ years and will probably remain so for the foreseeable future. It's hard-wired into my entertainment budget now. Hulu is not, nor will it be.
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post #11 of 73 Old 01-14-2020, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm there. It looks to fill the sci-fi humor void since 'The Orville' has moved behind a pay-wall.

Yeah, I know HBO has a pay-wall too, but I've been a subscriber for 30+ years and will probably remain so for the foreseeable future. It's hard-wired into my entertainment budget now. Hulu is not, nor will it be.
I'm looking forward to this one. It definitely has potential. Fingers crossed!
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post #12 of 73 Old 01-15-2020, 12:41 PM - Thread Starter
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‘Avenue 5’: Armando Iannucci On Tapping Into The ‘Madness Of Crowds’ In Space – TCA

Veep creator Armando Iannucci wanted to tap into the “madness of crowds” and populism for his latest project. But instead of setting up another political comedy, he decided to set it in space.

Iannucci, who also created BBC comedy The Thick of It, was at the Winter TCA press tour alongside the cast of the HBO show including Hugh Laurie, Josh Gad, Zach Woods, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Rebecca Front, Lenora Crichlow, Suzy Nakamura and Ethan Phillips.

“I knew after doing ten years of Veep and The Thick of It, I knew I didn’t want to do another political show,” he said. “There’s an air of uncertainty [in the world]… and a sense of foreboding doom and no one is doing anything about it. The madness of crowds and populism, I wanted to tap into that. But I also love sci-fi, so I thought ‘wouldn’t it be good to put this pressure cooker into space’.”

Created and co-written by Iannucci, Avenue 5 is a space tourism comedy set 40 years in the future when the solar system is everyone’s oyster. With Hugh Laurie as the Captain, nothing can go wrong.

Laurie is Ryan Clark, the confident and suave captain of Avenue 5, a space cruise ship with luxury amenities including gourmet buffets, a spa, an observation deck and yoga classes. As the series begins, Avenue 5’s eight-week journey around Saturn is underway, and its systems are optimal. But when the ship suddenly encounters technical difficulties, it’s up to Ryan and his crew to calm the disgruntled passengers and find a way to deal with unexpected events onboard – though they might or might not be equipped for the task.

“In shows like The Thick of It and Veep, it was people just trying to get through the day. With this it’s people trying to get through the next three days and possibly the rest of their lives,” added Iannucci.

When asked about the large bodycount in the comedy, Josh Gad, who stars as Herman Judd, joked that he likes to think of Avenue 5 as the “Game of Thrones of comedy”. Gad’s Judd is inspired by the likes of Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes and Fyre Festival founder Billy McFarland with the hair of Richard Branson. “He admires people like Elon Musk and Branson,” he said. “I fear this is where we might be headed.”

Despite being set in space, Iannucci added that he deliberately didn’t want it to be “mega futuristic”. “Other shows do that well, I wanted to focus on the human element,” he said.

Avenue 5, which is co-written with Simon Blackwell and Tony Roche, exec produced by Iannucci, Blackwell, Roche, Kevin Loader and Will Smith with Peter Fellow as co-exec producer and Steve Clark-Hall as producer, premieres on January 19, 2020.

https://deadline.com/2020/01/avenue-...ce-1202831416/

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post #13 of 73 Old 01-15-2020, 03:25 PM
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Veep-style putdowns in space?

Well the reviews don't indicate that.
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post #14 of 73 Old 01-15-2020, 06:29 PM
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I'm definitely there too...can't wait to see this series! Iannucci also did the wickedly satirical feature The Death of Stalin a few years ago, a film that I highly recommend to anyone who loved Veep:


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post #15 of 73 Old 01-20-2020, 05:06 PM
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First episode was ok. Not great. Not terrible. Had some funny parts. A nice 30 minute show. Don't need a full hour of this. I'm in for at least a few more episodes. See where it leads. Engage.

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post #16 of 73 Old 01-20-2020, 05:22 PM
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First episode was ok. Not great. Not terrible. Had some funny parts. A nice 30 minute show. Don't need a full hour of this. I'm in for at least a few more episodes. See where it leads. Engage.
I wasn't at all impressed. I will give it two more viewings to improve before I move on.
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post #17 of 73 Old 01-20-2020, 11:58 PM
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Not impressed either. I can't say it was horrible, but it wasn't particularly funny either. I'll give it a couple of episodes though.
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post #18 of 73 Old 01-21-2020, 06:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Wow, totally different feelings regarding this. I laughed hard throughout. The one liners were awesome, the clueless owner is so funny. Everything about it was just really really good. Some really hard belly laughs, I had to pause and rewind to hear what I missed from the laughing. Wife was laughing pretty hard to. Looking forward to many more episodes. With my luck this will get cancelled since I like it so much.
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post #19 of 73 Old 01-21-2020, 08:03 AM
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I wasn't at all impressed. I will give it two more viewings to improve before I move on.
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Not impressed either. I can't say it was horrible, but it wasn't particularly funny either. I'll give it a couple of episodes though.
I'm in this camp. My wife & I both looked at each other about halfway through and shrugged. Not one legitimate laugh, and way too many cringe-worthy groans. With all the money they clearly threw at this and Hugh Laurie to boot, I expected a lot more. Even the premise was ridiculous. Are you telling me a ship that size doesn't have attitude thrusters and an ability to quickly course-correct?

I'll watch another ep or two but if it doesn't improve, and there's no reason to think it will, I'm out. Mrs. Archi has already written it off. Too bad; I had high hopes for this one given the HBO pedigree. I've been waiting for decades for them to produce an actual space opera. Plenty of potential with a space comedy too, and this is the best they could come up with?
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Enjoyable, but not “great”. It’s a half hour comedy so the commitment is low. I’ll continue to watch as if lime to see where they go with it.
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post #21 of 73 Old 01-21-2020, 01:32 PM
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I'm in this camp. My wife & I both looked at each other about halfway through and shrugged. Not one legitimate laugh, and way too many cringe-worthy groans. With all the money they clearly threw at this and Hugh Laurie to boot, I expected a lot more. Even the premise was ridiculous. Are you telling me a ship that size doesn't have attitude thrusters and an ability to quickly course-correct?

I'll watch another ep or two but if it doesn't improve, and there's no reason to think it will, I'm out. Mrs. Archi has already written it off. Too bad; I had high hopes for this one given the HBO pedigree. I've been waiting for decades for them to produce an actual space opera. Plenty of potential with a space comedy too, and this is the best they could come up with?

Yeah, pretty similar thoughts. I realize comedy is very subjective, probably more so than other genres and I can be really picky in regard to comedy. What others may find hilarious, I find moronic.

I found too much of this episode just stupid. And not stupid funny, just the regular kind of stupid. The show will need to smarten up a bit. But already too many of the characters seem like complete goofballs.
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post #22 of 73 Old 01-21-2020, 01:37 PM
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Yeah, pretty similar thoughts. I realize comedy is very subjective, probably more so than other genres and I can be really picky in regard to comedy. What others may find hilarious, I find moronic.

I found too much of this episode just stupid. And not stupid funny, just regular kind of unfunny stupid. The show will need to smarten up a bit. But already too many of the characters seem like complete goofballs.
Yes, this. Just stupid. Stupid can be funny, but in this case the characters are just poorly drawn and written. The dialog makes the juvenile goofiness of 'The Orville' seem like high-level comedy. Needless to say, I don't like that one either. To each his own.
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post #23 of 73 Old 01-21-2020, 01:44 PM
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Yes, this. Just stupid. Stupid can be funny, but in this case the characters are just poorly drawn and written. The dialog makes the juvenile goofiness of 'The Orville' seem like high-level comedy. Needless to say, I don't like that one either. To each his own.

I didn't even get through one episode of Orville.

In comparison to Iannucci's other work (just as a reference to what I consider funny) .. I liked The Thick of It, thought Death of Stalin was okay, but not great. And Veep was, eh... some decent episodes, but a lot of bad ones too.

So I'll give the show more time, just that I don't have high expectations, too many cartoonish characters, not enough smart humor.
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post #24 of 73 Old 01-21-2020, 06:42 PM
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I didn't even get through one episode of Orville.

In comparison to Iannucci's other work (just as a reference to what I consider funny) .. I liked The Thick of It, thought Death of Stalin was okay, but not great. And Veep was, eh... some decent episodes, but a lot of bad ones too.

So I'll give the show more time, just that I don't have high expectations, too many cartoonish characters, not enough smart humor.


Veep? A lot of bad ones?! Yikes...can’t think of something I might disagree with more.

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post #25 of 73 Old 01-21-2020, 06:48 PM
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i gave it 15 minutes, then abandoned ship.
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post #26 of 73 Old 01-22-2020, 04:20 AM - Thread Starter
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I didn't even get through one episode of Orville.

In comparison to Iannucci's other work (just as a reference to what I consider funny) .. I liked The Thick of It, thought Death of Stalin was okay, but not great. And Veep was, eh... some decent episodes, but a lot of bad ones too.

So I'll give the show more time, just that I don't have high expectations, too many cartoonish characters, not enough smart humor.
You didn't like Orville?? I doubt then you will like this show. This humor is very similar.

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post #27 of 73 Old 01-22-2020, 09:10 AM
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I thought it was kind of funny. I’m gonna keep watching. While dramas are polarizing sometimes, I find comedies seem to be more polarizing, because what folks find funny varies wildly.
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post #28 of 73 Old 01-22-2020, 09:38 AM
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The funniest comedy I've seen in the last couple of years was 'LA to Vegas'. The Missus & I laughed long and hard at every episode. But evidently few people agreed with us as it got cancelled after one season.
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post #29 of 73 Old 01-22-2020, 09:40 AM
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Is there much cursing?



My wife will not abide that. I also do not find it the least funny while others hoot at the F-word.
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post #30 of 73 Old 01-22-2020, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmatch View Post
Is there much cursing?



My wife will not abide that. I also do not find it the least funny while others hoot at the F-word.


It’s TV-MA so expect there to be some, I don’t remember an excessive amount, but I rarely do unless it’s out of place. Since it’s rated TV-MA and cursing can and will be used it’s probably not the show for you and your wife. Better safe than sorry I guess.
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