Fox Comedy Block

So last night was the much-hyped fall premiere of Fox’s new comedy block. We saw the return of New Girl, which led into new show Ben & Kate, and then more New Girl to lead into The Mindy Project. And in a television first, Raising Hope actually premiered over Twitter, so basically the future is now. So let’s talk about them, shall we?

New Girl

The first episode centered around two events: Jess losing her job as a teacher, and Schmidt getting his penis cast off after several months and throwing a party. Overall, I really liked this episode. I loved the reveal that Winston really loves fruity girly drinks, and gets weird after having them. Probably my biggest laughs of the night came from that. I enjoyed seeing a new status quo for Jess, which hopefully will last more than a couple episodes but not the whole season. And of course I enjoyed Schmidt being weird with fire. It was a solid episode, but not as strong as some of last season’s.

The second episode revolved around Jess deciding to be a new person and try to juggle two guys. This was pretty great. I enjoyed seeing a less-neurotic Jess, who was more comfortable with sex. In general I thought the whole prudish angle was pretty tired, so I’m glad they benched it. And this being a sitcom, her whole scheme fell apart about as perfectly as you could hope so that was nice. I also really loved Nick’s conversation with “Old Nick” from the future. Schmidt’s attempts to hit on Winston’s sister were less funny, and his mom was severely under-used. Overall it was a good night for New Girl, though not perhaps a stellar one.

Ben & Kate

I would have taken “good” for this show however. Or even passable. But it wasn’t. It was effing awful. I really tried to like it, but I couldn’t! There was no character to latch onto! Kate was just kind of pathetic, Ben was dumb AND pathetic (and pretty annoying), the British chick lacked any charm at all, the black guy was funny-ish but had only two lines, and the little girl was five. Who am I supposed to care about?!? Seriously, halfway into the show my brothers were begging to change the channel, declaring it “the worst premiere I have ever seen,” and then later “the worst thing I have seen,” though this was acknowledged as exaggeration. I will possibly give it another try, but it’s unlikely.

[EDIT: While awful, my brothers and I would like to make it abundantly clear that Ben & Kate was still VASTLY superior to The New Normal, which had absolutely no redeeming value and should never be watched by anyone ever.]

The Mindy Project

I went into The Mindy Project with pretty low hopes. I never loved Kelly on The Office, and haven’t liked that show in about five or six seasons. So when I heard she was going to be the star of a show, I was dubious. But I actually really liked it. Having gone to Baylor, I met more than my fair share of girls who grew up on romantic comedies, and continued to watch them weekly if not daily. I’ve seen girls agonize over why they’re single, search desperately for Prince Charming, and put WAY to much value on a meet-cute than they should. I found Mindy to be certainly a bit pathetic at first, but unlike Groan & Hate up there, the show actually acknowledged it and drew humor from it. PLUS, probably my favorite scene was her suiting up to deliver a baby, proving that she is actually intelligent, competent, and good at stuff. So even though I found the supporting cast pretty weak, I’m confident they’ll develop as the show goes on, much as New Girl has done.

Raising Hope

Spoiler Alert: Jimmy and Sabrina get engaged. Personally I think it’s pretty sudden, considering they didn’t start dating until half-way through last season, possibly even more recently than that (I’m too tired to check). But then again, Jimmy’s ALWAYS loved her, and she definitely loved him even when she was dating Wyatt. Plus the whole like raising a baby together thing probably bonds you a bit quicker than just dinner and a movie, so I’m down with it. The episode was pretty solid. We got flashbacks, creepy photos by Frank, a fake orgasm, some genuine “awww” as well as some genuine “ewww,” and a song by Kate Micucci, so overall it was highly indicative of this great show.

 

And that’s all folks! I’m off to save the day one sick teacher at a time, buy the crap out of some Aquaman comics (among others), blast my abs into oblivion, and then try to make it through the next couple days without having a seizure as I eagerly await the release of Looper!

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